Jim Collins left his position as the Hancock County Food Pantry’s Executive Director earlier this year.

The Hancock County Food Pantry's Board of Directors is on the hunt for the pantry's next executive director.

Jim Collins, who served as executive director for the past three years, resigned in April due to health concerns, food pantry treasurer John Wittliff said.

"He's led a life of service to a lot of folks in South Mississippi," Wittliff said.

The Hancock County Food Pantry is an all-volunteer run organization and the executive position is also a non-compensated volunteer position, Wittliff said.

The job description includes managing the daily operations of the pantry, which is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to noon, he said.

In addition, the executive director is also responsible for:

• Managing the daily operation of the food pantry.

• Purchasing supplies and equipment as needed.

• Attending meetings, events, food drives, etc. –– sometimes outside of food pantry operating hours.

• Coordinate food drives as needed.

• Insure annual purchased and donated food inventory is performed at the end of each year.

• Prepare monthly reports as required.

• Coordinate with Twelve Baskets and Bay Area Food Banks as required.

• Schedule maintenance of building and equipment with Hancock County maintenance or outside vendors as required.

"We are looking for someone that likes to help the community," Wittliff said.

The Hancock County Food Pantry, which was founded in 1986, is the only food pantry in the county and serves an average of 650 families per month, Wittliff said.

There are more than 100 volunteers and more than 91 percent of funds are used to purchase food for those in need, he said.

In March, the food pantry's board chair Lisa Cowand presented the annual report to the Hancock County Board of Supervisors.

The pantry operates out of a county-owned facility at 9972 Hwy. 603, she said. The county also pays for the electricity, dumpster services, pest control, water and sewer insurance, and telephone.

In 2018, the pantry provided free food and personal hygiene items to 13,389 individuals during 7,618 family visits, Wittliff said. Since 1986, the pantry has provided free food to 283,666 individuals.

Anyone who is interested in the executive director position can contact Cowand at 228-216-0506 or Wittliff at 225-329-9446.

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