Second Harvest Food Bank Leadership Team

Natalie Jayroe
President & CEO

Natalie Jayroe became the president and CEO of the Second Harvest Food Bank in January 2006, having worked with food banks in Founder, Board and Executive capacities for 23 years. In 2007, she was named one of City Business’ Women of the Year. In 2008 she received Mazon’s Irving Cramer Award and was a graduate of the New Orleans Regional Leadership Institute. She was named a Young Leadership Council Role Model and City Business Money Maker in 2011, and participated in the Leadership Louisiana class of 2012. Natalie currently serves on the Policy Engagement and Advocacy Committee for Feeding America and on the Board of Directors of the New Orleans Regional Leadership Institute.

Brandy Spencer-Byrd
Director of Human Resources

A member of our Executive Leadership, Brandy joined Second Harvest in 2014, where she is responsible for the overall management, administration, and delivery of all human resource functions, including recruiting, training, compensation, benefits administration, and legal compliance. Previously, she worked as a business teacher at John McDonogh High School. Originally from Orange, Texas, Brandy holds a Bachelor’s in Mass Communication from McNeese State University and a Master’s in Organizational Management from the University of Phoenix.

Elisha Darcey
Chief Administrative Officer

A member of our Executive Leadership, Elisha manages and directs the finance, procurement, and IT departments. She is responsible for budgeting, risk mitigation, and performance metrics and she is also involved in the strategic planning and sustainability of the food bank. Elisha has extensive management experience and has served in leadership roles at several companies including The Times-Picayune and Advance Publications. She has a passion for serving the community including being the church administrator and treasurer for Christ Baptist Church for the last 30 years. Elisha is a graduate of Loyola University of New Orleans.

Kristen Riegel
Chief Philanthropy Officer

A member of our Executive Leadership, Kristen Riegel joined Second Harvest after more than fifteen years of development experience. After several years in event fundraising and major gifts for University of Houston, The University of Texas Health Science Center and Rice University, Kristen spent eight years raising funds for social service organizations. A native of New Orleans, she brings her years of major-market experience in fundraising to the mission of Second Harvest. She is a graduate of the Academy of the Sacred Heart and attended LSU for both undergraduate and graduate school.

Paul Scelfo
Regional Director, Acadiana & SW Louisiana

Paul joined our team as Acadiana & SW Louisiana Regional Director area after more than twenty-five years serving Acadiana in the food and beverage industry. A life-long resident of Southwest Louisiana, Paul received his bachelor’s degree from the ULL and has worked throughout his career in fundraising and event planning for charitable organizations across the area. As a member of Executive Leadership, Paul oversees a major expansion of our work in the Lafayette & Lake Charles areas, including operations, emergency response, partnership development and fundraising. Most recently, Paul oversaw the recent production and delivery of thousands of hot meals from Second Harvest to residents impacted by the pandemic. Paul sees the opportunity to work in his hometown community as a true privilege.

Jay Vise
Director of Communications and Marketing

A member of our Executive Leadership, Jay oversees all aspects of public relations and communications for Second Harvest. He also manages production of photo and video projects, as well as producing printed and electronic newsletters. Prior to joining Second Harvest in 2013, Jay spent six years as a reporter, anchor and digital content manager for WWL Radio in New Orleans. He received his BA in Marketing from LSU and his JD from the Loyola College of Law in New Orleans.

Mary Netzhammer
Executive Assistant

Mary joined Second Harvest in 2018 following a successful career in managing daily operations through annual planning, project development and program implementation. Mary became acquainted with Second Harvest 15 years ago when she began volunteering in our repack room. Having spent 27 plus years working for a leader in the beverage industry, she went on to work for the Archdiocese of New Orleans. Mary attended both Loyola University and UNO.

Shannon L. Alexander
Business Process Manager

Shannon has been with Second Harvest for more than seven years. She facilitates the advancement of the organization through evaluation of best practices of efficient business processes, utilization of technology solutions and continual staff training. Previously, Shannon worked in the field of HIV prevention. She is a Native New Orleanian and alumni of Dillard University where she received a Bachelor of Science in Community Health Education in May 2000.

Brittany Bowie
Impact Operations Officer (West)

Brittany assists our Regional Director with overseeing all partner relationships and programs in the Lafayette and Lake Charles region of Second Harvest Food Bank’s service area. She also assists in leading a collaborative team with the goal of maximizing the effectiveness and efficiency of our partner programs and relationship, including the Mobile Market, Lafayette Kitchen, Partner Relations, Nutrition Education, SNAP Outreach, and any other initiatives entered into to serve the people of the Lafayette and Lake Charles regions. Additionally, she works with our Children’s Program Manager to ensure coordinators are meeting the needs of Summer Feeding, Kids Cafe, and nutrition education.

Kathryn Gsell
Community Relations Manager

As the Community Relations Manager for Second Harvest, Kathryn manages several major annual events and fundraising initiatives, such as Harvest at Home and Duck Derby. Kathryn earned her Bachelor of Arts in Communication from the University of New Orleans.

Mamie Jackson
Director of Operations

Mamie Jackson joined the Second Harvest Team in September of 2006 after serving as a Supply Sergeant in the United States Army. Her lifetime of expertise in logistics and inventory management is essential to managing the tens of millions of pounds of food that passes through our facilities every year. In her 30-year Army career, she oversaw the logistics of supplying everything from nuts and bolts to trucks, and helicopters to installation furniture. Following her retirement from military service, she has found a true passion for supplying food and nutrition, as she works determinedly to do her part in ending hunger in Louisiana.

Tanya O'Reilly
Program and Innovation Manager

Tanya joined Second Harvest Food Bank in 2003 as the Children’s Programs Manager, overseeing programs targeted to children in need. As a native New Orleanian, Tanya is committed to improving the well-being of children across our 23 parish service territory. In her spare time, Tanya volunteers for local animal rescue organizations as serves on the Board of Directors for the Humane Society of Louisiana.

Emily Slazer
Food Sourcing Manager

Emily has been a key member of the Second Harvest Food Sourcing team since 2016. As the Food Sourcing Manager, she works to foster relationships with food donors including manufacturers, distributors, retailers, food drive organizers, and farmers throughout Second Harvest’s 23 parish service area. Her team also oversees the challenge of managing millions of pounds of donated food product that flows our way following disasters and emergencies. Emily is an alumna of Centenary College of Louisiana and a graduate of Leadership St. Bernard.

Heather Sweeney
Director of Development

Heather joined Second Harvest Food Bank in 2008. As Director of Development, she is responsible for growing and sustaining community support from individual, corporate and foundation donors that is crucial to fulfilling Second Harvest’s mission. She has more than 10 years of experience working in development and philanthropy. In her spare time, Heather serves on the Advisory Board of the Emerging Philanthropists of New Orleans.

Paige Vance
Impact Operations Manager (East)

Paige Vance returns to Second Harvest to serve as the Impact Operations Manager. In this capacity she is the Disaster Officer who coordinates response efforts, and it is her team who work directly with our partner agencies on the North Shore, down the Bayou, and in the Greater New Orleans area. Paige has a Bachelor’s Degree earned at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and an employment history that includes many years in the Maryland State government where she climbed to a Division Chief in Medicaid. She came to New Orleans and fell in live with the people here, and her heart remained with the culture, the people, and the joie de vivre of Southern Louisiana. She has made this her home and serving those who live here her mission.

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