Almost 7 years ago, Alameda County Supervisor Wilma Chan stood in our warehouse and announced her commitment to end poverty and hunger in Alameda County through her “All In” initiative. That bold statement was a hallmark of Supervisor Chan’s commitment to our mission and, yet, just one example of how sincerely passionate she was for improving the lives of community. Over the course of her 30+ year career, Supervisor Chan fought tirelessly for her belief that everyone deserves healthcare, housing, nourishment, and enrichment. She believed not only that people should have basic needs met, but a higher standard of comfort, dignity and humanity. By launching initiatives like the Human Impact Budget and All In, she put people first, and in this way she was not only a partner in our work, but an inspiration and a leader.

ACCFB is shocked and deeply saddened by her passing. Our hearts go out to her family, friends, colleagues and the many, many people she personally touched.

We at ACCFB are grieving. Some of us remember working with Supervisor Chan during her days in the State Assembly, when she was new to the office and toured St. Mary’s Center, one of our longstanding senior-serving partners, to see their new garden.

We remember fighting alongside her to ensure that every eligible household can access CalFresh. She brought us to the table, and we stood with her at press conferences to put a human face on budget cuts during the great recession.

On the 50th anniversary of the War on Poverty, Supervisor Chan launched a new war on poverty and announced her commitment to ending hunger in Alameda County.

The list goes on and on – and we speak just to the initiatives that impacted Alameda County Community Food Bank. Her reach beyond our work was practically endless.

ACCFB will strive to honor the legacy of Supervisor Wilma Chan by continuing to fight against the injustice and indignity of poverty and hunger, putting people first, every step of the way. We humbly embrace the bold community of advocates that she created and inspired through her years of service. We are here for you, at the ready to continue the pursuit of her bold and beautiful vision.

Wilma:  Your passion and dedication to making peoples’ lives better is needed now more than ever. You will be sorely missed.