New director plans to bring the Community Table's funds "back into the black"

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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU)-- Just weeks after sending out a desperate call for donations, the Community Table is announcing a new leader. Michelle Koehn is just settling into her new position, but she says she aims to put the non-profit back into the black.

Koehn has ties to the Community Table, back in high school she served as a volunteer at the non-profit.

The Community has struggled to raise enough money to fund its efforts in recent years. Koehn says she's ready to take on the budget challenge.

“I am very excited to get the organization out back into the black. I’m excited to rally everyone in the community. I know this is such an important mission to help give food into the community,” Koehn said.

Community Table Board president Ben Franko says the annual operating budget is $300,000 a year which equates to $15,000 a month. He says an increasing number of guests and fewer donations have the Community Table struggling to keep up. Franko says he is hopeful that under the new leadership, the Community Table will help the board formulate a plan for the future.

“Having someone there to focus on the organization will really be instrumental to our success going forward,” he added.

Moving forward, Koehn aims to build on community support as the Community Table continues to serve $40,000 guests a year.

“We need to harness the enthusiasm in a pragmatic way and as a community we can mitigate food insecurity in Eau Claire and the surrounding areas,” Koehn said.

Franko told WEAU 13 News the organization is hoping to raise between $25,000 and $30,000 to stay in the black this year. At an event hosted at Bug Eyed Betty’s Tuesday, nearly $1,500 was raised to help fund the Community Table’s operating budget.
To make a tax-deductible donation to the Community Table click here.

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