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Sen. Jeff Merkley

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Mr. President, today I wish to thank Rachel Bristol for 29 years of service to Oregon's hungry and congratulate her on her very deserving retirement. Before joining the Oregon Food Bank, Rachel graduated with honors from the University of Oregon with a degree in community development and public administration and served as a VISTA volunteer at the Oregon Food Share in 1983. Her devotion to feeding the hungry soon led her to the job of Acting Executive Director at the OFS. In 1988, she was a key player in the merger with Interagency Food Bank to form the Oregon Food Bank. Just 2 years later, Bristol was named the executive director & CEO of the OFB.

Rachel's legacy at the Oregon Food Bank is well-known and widespread. Under her leadership, the food bank expanded from a 10,000 square foot site to 4 facilities totaling more than 155,000 square feet. Rachel's devotion to improving the lives of hundreds of thousands of hungry children has garnered recognition from the University of Portland, the Paul G. Allen Foundation, Feeding America, and the Portland Business Journal, and thanks from the families whose lives have changed because of her hard work and dedication.

I will be sad to see Rachel Bristol go, but thank her for her 29 years of service.