Employee Spotlight: Gabe Ornelas

June 16th, 2014 § 0 comments

gabe-staff-spotlightIt’s not unusual to find a foodie working at the Food Bank.  In this employee spotlight Gabe shares the importance of team spirit, whether you’re feeding judges at a BBQ competition or a neighbor in need.

Position: Volunteer Project Lead

What does your job entail?

I make sure the projects are set up for each volunteer shift, that the volunteers are having a great experience during their shift, and make sure we’re putting out the highest quality of food to our Partner Agencies.

What kind of projects do the volunteers do?

We do all sorts. Today we’re doing beverages, so we’re guaranteed to have some spillage. We have a frozen project, where we inspect meat to make sure it’s the right color and nothing has been opened. We also make boxes for Habitat for Humanity to welcome families into their new homes, and we just sent boxes out to six families this morning. And, of course, we have our dry goods which includes sorting all of our canned items.

How do you spend time outside of the Food Bank?

I like going to car shows, I’m into custom cars and trucks. Also, I was on a BBQ competition team called S & S Pit Crew. And I have a nine year old daughter, so she takes up most of my time.

I’d love to hear more about these BBQ competitions! What did you make, did you ever win?

Your main goal at a BBQ competition is to win Grand Champion by getting the most points in the three categories, usually ribs, brisket and chicken. We won some of those and some Reserve Grand Champion prizes (that’s like second place). What’s interesting is that you’re being judged on one bite. It’s not like a regular BBQ place where you eat the whole rib, you get just one bite of the rib, or brisket, or chicken so you’re trying to pack as much flavor as possible into that one bite and really get the judges taste buds going.

We’ve been all over for the competitions, New Mexico, Missouri, places here locally in Texas, we’ve been invited to the American Royal in Kansas City, and also plan on going to South Carolina and Memphis.

What is something surprising about your job?

How different the people you see day to day are. We have a lot of interesting characters come in to volunteer.

What’s your favorite part about working at the Food Bank?

Knowing that in the end you’re doing something good for the community. Everyone is working as a team to meet our goal, which is to feed hungry people. ­


Interested in a career at the Food Bank? Check out our open positions here.


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