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Manny Hidalgo - Executive Director

Manny Hidalgo • Executive Director

Manny joined Shepherd’s Table as our new Executive Director in July 2019. Prior to joining us, Manny has also served in the leadership role for different organizations. He was also the President of Hidalgo Community-Based Consulting LLC, which provided services to nonprofit organizations and local governments seeking to build wealth in low-income communities. In 2009, Manny received the Center for Nonprofit Advancement’s EXCEL Leadership Award and the Meyer Foundation’s Exponent Award in 2011. 
Haile Gebregziabher - Director of Operations​

Haile Gebregziabher • Deputy Executive Director

[email protected]X206301-792-5229 (Cell)

Haile has been a key member of Shepherd’s Table’s staff since May 2009. He first started out as a regular volunteer at Shepherd’s Table while working as the Manager of Dining Services for The Army Navy Club in Washington, D.C. When the opportunity came, Haile joined us as our full-time team member. Before Shepherd’s Table, Haile worked for the International Committee of Red Cross in Sudan as their Administrator for five years. He went to the University of Cincinnati for his Bachelor’s degree in Business Management. At Shepherd’s Table, Haile oversees our daily operations and builds partnerships with local businesses and organizations. In addition to bringing over 10 years of experience in restaurant operations and management, he also shares a strong commitment and passion to serving our clientele in our day to day operations.

Daniella Burgos • Director of Development and Communications

Daniella joined Shepherd’s Table leadership team in January of 2022. With a background in development and communications, Daniella has experience developing communications and fundraising strategies for non-profits and community organizations. Previously Daniella created and supported public relations campaigns, as well as media outreach and logistics projects for Scott Circle Communications. Daniella first started out in her career as the development and communications associate for Suited for Change, where she supported the non-profit’s programs and execution of strategic communications campaigns, including social media, e-newsletters and traditional media outreach. Daniella holds a bachelor’s degree in global studies from The College of William and Mary and a master’s degree in strategic communications from American University. 

Jerome Chambers • Director of Social Services

Jerome joined the team in May of 2021. He leads our Social Service Department, handling all aspects of case management, the Resource Center, the Eye Clinic and our Weekend Day Program. Prior to his time at Shepherd’s Table, Jerome worked as the Director of Social Services for various long-term care facilities for the elderly throughout Maryland and South Florida. He holds both a Master of Divinity degree from Morehouse Scool of Religion and a Master of Social Work degree from Howard University. Jerome grew up in Silver Spring and excited to serve his community.

Christina Moore - Chef

Christina Moore • Director of Meal Services

Christina joined the Army Reserves at 17, spending 9.5 years as a Human Resources specialist, including a one-year tour in Baghdad, Iraq. From there, she enrolled in culinary school, graduating from Le Cordon Bleu in New England in the Advanced Honors Program and earning an AA in Culinary Arts, as well as a Diplome de Art Culinaire, the French equivalent of a Culinary Certificate. After completing an externship in Massachusetts, she relocated to Virginia. A series of unfortunate circumstances led to a fall into, and subsequent climb out of, a period of homelessness. After overcoming this difficult time, she became the Sous Chef of a busy restaurant in Virginia, and came to Shepherd’s Table out of a deep yearning to do something more important for the world, and a sense of wanting to “give back.” In November 2020, Christina became our Director of Special Programs and in late 2022 was promoted to Director of Meal Services.

Tinsae Adugna • Social Services Program Manager

Tinsae has worked in case management since earning her Bachelor of Science in Social Work from Frostburg State University. She most recently served as a housing case manager for Cornerstones in Northern Virginia, honing her expertise on the intersection of mental health and homelessness. A local to the area, she grew up volunteering at Shepherd’s Table and has always appreciated its significance to the community. She’s committed to helping Shepherd’s Table continue to grow and expand services.

Sharon Flynn - Donor Relations Associate

Sharon Flynn • Philanthropic Gifts Advisor

Sharon has over 25 years of senior nonprofit management experience including executive director positions with an emphasis on fundraising. In addition to her nonprofit work, Sharon spent 14 years as co-owner of an award-winning film and video production company that provided programs as well as collateral materials, media strategy and marketing. She is also a published writer in national magazines. Prior to her time at Shepherd’s Table, she served as the Executive Director of Suited for Change, the area’s leading nonprofit for women in need of professional attire, mentoring, and job-readiness education and then a fundraising consultant to several Washington, DC nonprofit organizations.
Headshot of Kara von der Stitt

Kara von der Stitt • Development Associate

Kara joined the Shepherd’s Table team in June 2022 to serve the Development & Communications team, working in grant writing and fundraising. She graduated with a degree in Communication from the University of Maryland, College Park and has worked with unhoused communities in Prince George’s County, Montgomery County and Baltimore City throughout the past 10 years. Before joining Shepherd’s Table, Kara was a local Event Coordinator primarily executing weddings and birthdays. She’s passionate about helping people and serving her local community, and she’s excited to begin her career at Shepherd’s Table.

Brenna Olson • Advocacy Coordinator

Brenna began her work with Shepherd’s Table in the fall of 2022 after graduating from American University with a degree in Communications, Legal Institutions, Economics, and Government. Previously interning with the National Low Income Housing Coalition, she’s focused her academic and vocational pursuits on housing justice. Personal experience with housing insecurity instilled a passion for working in this subject matter. Now, she’s eager to apply her experience and policy expertise as Shepherd’s Table develops a robust advocacy program. Additionally, she’s a big fan of coffee and cooking– making ST just the right fit.

Victoria Benesch • Communications Associate

Victoria joined the team in March of 2023 as the Communications Associate. She graduated from St Mary’s College of Maryland with a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature. Victoria’s previous experience includes administrative, teaching, hospitality and event planning. Growing up in a Foreign Service family, she uses her overseas experiences to adapt to and understand new environments and different cultures while serving her local community. Victoria hopes to create engaging content on all platforms that helps tell the Shepherd’s Table story and drives community action. With her passion for connecting with people from diverse backgrounds and her experience living overseas, she bring a unique perspective to her work.    

Mindy Hofmann Headshot

Mindy Hofmann • Volunteer Coordinator

Mindy joined as our Volunteer Coordinator in April 2022. She’s spent the bulk of her career in the nonprofit world, working in areas such as mental health, developmental disability and abuse prevention. She brings vast experience working with volunteers, most notably managing and training volunteers to advocate on behalf of children experiencing abuse and neglect. A D.C. native, she earned her M.A. in Human Resource Development from Marymount University. Her work has always been tangental to Shepherd’s Table, and she’s eager to support our volunteers in any way possible as they serve our community. In her spare time, Mindy enjoys exploring the outdoors, yoga, curling up with a good book, and spending time with her two children.   

Debbie Boger • Urban Garden Coordinator

Debbie serves Shepherd’s Table as the organization’s first Urban Food Garden Coordinator, with a passion for teaching people about caring for the earth and for transforming outdoor spaces into productive, sustainable gardens.  She has experience teaching students how to grow and harvest their own food with the Audubon Naturalist Society and has led the development of an outdoor classroom for two local public schools. Previously, she worked in environmental advocacy in both the government and nonprofit sectors, most recently directing a U.S. Climate Policy program at a think tank in Washington, DC.  Debbie holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Pomona College and a master’s degree in public policy from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Paola Ortiz - Staff Picture

Paola Ortiz • Lead Chef

Paola has 12 years of experience in the culinary field, having graduated from the Scottsdale Culinary Institute of Arizona in 2009. She’s lived in Maryland for the past eight years, working as the Head Chef and Facility Manager at The Cottage at Curry Manor in Bethesda before joining the Shepherd’s Table staff. She initially joined to assist the then-newly established Beyond the Table program, but was promoted to the kitchen’s Lead Chef in late 2021. She leads the team with passion and excellence as we serve our clients the very best curated meals.   

Gary Bullock - Chef

Gary Bullock • Chef

Gary has been cooking and working in the hospitality industry since he was a teenager. He has a wealth of experience having worked in many different restaurants and food related capacities. Gary has a passion for our mission and understands how critical it is for disadvantaged individuals to receive nourishing meals, as well as basic services. Prior to joining Shepherd’s Table in 2018, Gary has worked among some of the most notable restaurants within the DC area. He was the Assistant Kitchen Director at DC Central Kitchen, which aims to fight hunger and poverty.

Dao Huynh • Chef

Dao joined the team in 2021, bringing nine years of international culinary experience with him. He has a particular specialty in French cuisine. A desire to serve the community and drew him to Shepherd’s Table, where he’s able to steward his expertise to create delicious meals for our guests. In his free time, Chef Dao enjoys backpacking and collecting chopper motorcycles.  

Russell Smoot • Chef

Russell, known as Ruggz, has extensive experience working as an Executive Chef across a variety of restaurants. Constantly driven to learn new things, he’s mastered an array of cuisines and techniques. For the past several years, he’s focused his practice on healthy, plant-based foods and loves to show clients how delicious healthy-eating can be. He began volunteering at Shepherd’s Table during the pandemic and was asked to join the team six months later. He’s passionate about serving the public and enjoys utilizing his gifts to do so.  

Willie Thompson • Chef

Originally from Massachusetts, Willie joined our staff at the beginning of 2023. He comes to Shepherd’s Table with decades of knowledge and experience in the culinary and hospitality world. Before attending culinary school, Willie applied his Bachelors in Hotel Management in a hospitality role. His work experience also includes being a Chef Manager at a Catholic charity, a retirement home as well as dabbling in the world of catering. Willie enjoys expressing himself through cooking and experimenting with different cuisines.

Sonji Owens - Bookkeeper​

Sonji Owens • Business Manager

Mohammad Banya - Senior Program Assistant​

Mohamed Banya • Senior Operations Assistant

Mohamed started as a part-time program assistant at Shepherd’s Table, and when an opportunity presented itself, he became our full-time staff in 2016. Mohamed has extensive experience in managing security, both domestically and internationally. He started his career as a police officer, and worked his way up to working as Secret Service for the Vice President of Sierra Leone for many years. He moved to the US and worked at Discovery Communications headquarters as a Security Officer.
Robert Savoy - Program Assistant​

Robert Savoy • Operations Assistant

Robert has worked in the security industry for over 15 years, ranging from sport bars, the Redskins stadium, to the federal government, which then brought him here to Shepherd’s Table. He is skilled at building relationships with clientele, de-escalating issues, and working in partnership with police officers.
Roberto Maravilla - Program Assistant, Security and Facilities Maintenance​

Roberto Maravilla • Operations Assistant

Roberto joined Shepherd’s Table in April of 2018 and serves as one of our Program Assistants. Roberto wanted to work at Shepherd’s Table’s because it provides critical services to people who would otherwise not have access to them. Originally from El Salvador, before joining Shepherd’s Table Roberto has also been a maintenance and warehouse supervisor.
Nancy Martinez - Receptionist​

Nancy Martinez • Operations Assistant & Receptionist

Nancy joined the Shepherd’s Table team with years of experience as a GNA. Poised at the front of our building, Nancy is the first staff member many of our clients ever meet. Her experience caring for patients has equipped her to empathetically engage our guests and meet them wherever they are. She plays a crucial role in building relationships with clients, and works to ensure all of our on-site programs run smoothly and safely.