The Berkshire Food Project was founded in 1987 by students from Williams College, in conjunction with local supporters and the Rev. Elizabeth Wheeler of the First Congregational Church in North Adams. They responded to a pronounced rise in unemployment and poverty in northern Berkshire County after the closing of several large industrial employers. Since then, the Project has gained volunteer and donor support from across the region, yet our Board of Directors still includes several students, faculty, and staff from Williams and the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts. Our Executive Director since 1993, Valerie Schwarz, leads a pool of some 25 volunteers along with kitchen assistant Linda Palmer.