USDA’s Kumar Chandran Joins FoodCorps as Policy Director

FoodCorps invests in D.C. presence for school nutrition policy work on Capitol Hill

FoodCorps announced today that Kumar Chandran has joined the organization to lead the policy team for the rapidly growing nonprofit. Chandran comes to FoodCorps with more than ten years of experience working in food and nutrition policy. He will join FoodCorps’ Innovation and Strategic Partnerships team, and will lead the organization’s newly opened Washington D.C. office.

In just six years, FoodCorps has grown from a startup to an established organization with a $12 million dollar annual budget, with 215 AmeriCorps service members in 17 states and Washington D.C. The expansion of its policy team marks FoodCorps’ establishment of a daily presence on Capitol Hill, leveraging the organization’s data and experience from over five years of work in schools to make the case for reforming school food and nutrition education nationwide. Chandran will also lead efforts to help reshape the state and local level policies that impact school food environments.

Most recently, Chandran worked as Chief of Staff for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services, under the leadership of Undersecretary Kevin Concannon. Prior to his tenure at USDA, Chandran served at the national nonprofit Share Our Strength, working with federal, state, and local government agencies and organizations on strategies to end childhood hunger through leveraging federal nutrition programs, and with California Food Policy Advocates on state-level nutrition policy.

“Kumar is a vital addition to our team,” said FoodCorps co-founder and CEO Curt Ellis. “We value his deep knowledge of the nutrition policies that can benefit our country’s most vulnerable populations, and we are excited to benefit from his record of relationship- and partnership-building in D.C. We couldn’t be more thrilled to have him on board.”

“FoodCorps’ work is transforming school food environments around the country,” said Chandran. “I am excited to help tell that story to policymakers and to partner with them as we work together to build a healthy future for our kids.”

About FoodCorps

FoodCorps connects kids to healthy food in school. Its team of AmeriCorps leaders serves in high-need schools to make sure students learn what healthy food is, fall in love with it, and eat it every day. Its corps members team up with educators to deliver lead hands-on lessons in growing, cooking and tasting healthy food; partner with farmers and food service workers to create nutritious and delicious school meals; and collaborate with communities to build a schoolwide culture of health. Building on this foundation of direct impact, FoodCorps pursues systemic strategies that will benefit all of our nation’s 100,000 schools.