GW and José Andrés Name Stacy Dean as Inaugural Carbonell Family Executive Director of the Global Food Institute

Dean, a food and nutrition security expert, most recently has served as the Deputy Under Secretary for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services.

June 18, 2024

Stacy Dean

Stacy Dean is the inaugural Carbonell Family Executive Director of the Global Food Institute.

The George Washington University and chef, author and humanitarian José Andrés, HON ’14, have announced that Stacy Dean, an expert in food policy and nutrition with more than 30 years of experience in the government and non-profit sectors, will serve as the inaugural Carbonell Family Executive Director of the Global Food Institute. She will join GW in the latter half of July.

Dean most recently has served as the Deputy Under Secretary for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services, where she has led the department’s food and nutrition policy and programs. She has worked to increase nutrition assistance for families and individuals, invest in local and regional food systems to build greater resilience, collaborate with other federal agencies on advancing nutrition policy and strategy, and integrate diversity, equity and inclusion into the agency’s operations and mission.

“When we launched the search for an executive director, we wanted to identify a visionary leader and food expert who would be able to lead the Global Food Institute into its next phase,” said Provost Christopher Alan Bracey. “Stacy has been on the forefront of food policy issues for decades and is an excellent choice to provide leadership in tackling the world’s most challenging food issues.” 

As executive director, Dean will champion the institute’s mission to change the world through the power of food, amplifying strategic initiatives and fostering new opportunities, programs, and partnerships.

“I am honored to join the Global Food Institute at this critical moment,” said Dean. “Together, we will pave the way for innovative solutions to food insecurity, malnutrition, climate change, and the myriad global challenges we face. Our collective efforts will turn our aspirations for a more equitable and sustainable food system into reality.”

United States Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack praised Dean’s accomplishments with USDA.

“Under the leadership of Stacy Dean, USDA's Food and Nutrition Service has been innovative and forward-looking in their efforts to enhance nutrition security and put healthy food on dinner tables and in school lunchrooms across the country, resulting in some of the most significant milestones in the food and nutrition space in decades," said Vilsack. "American families are better off thanks to Stacy’s work, and will continue to be in her new role.”

Prior to joining USDA, Dean was vice president for food assistance policy at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a non-profit, non-partisan research and analysis organization. Dean led the Food Assistance Division in advancing policy and strategy on issues impacting low-income families, forged partnerships with policymakers, academics, and non-profit organizations at all levels to inform federal policy and provide guidance on implementing federal programs, and served as an expert resource in publications and national media outlets.

“Stacy brings deep knowledge and experience that will help the Global Food Institute reshape the future of our global food system,” said President Ellen M. Granberg. “Her strategic vision, proven leadership, and commitment to serving others will be invaluable in launching initiatives that address the most pressing food and agricultural issues of our time.”  

Dean has provided thought leadership and expertise across many other avenues, including congressional testimony and as a member of numerous budget, policy and human services boards and committees.

“The enormity of challenges before our global food system demands a passionate leader of Stacy’s caliber, with a profound understanding of the issues and the drive to effect change,” said Andrés, founder of the Global Food Institute. “I’m thrilled to work with her as we usher in a new era of impact for the institute.”

GW Board of Trustees Chair Emeritus Nelson Carbonell Jr., B.S. ’85, HON ’21, and his wife, Michele, funded the Carbonell Family Executive Directorship with a generous $5 million endowment gift.

"Michele and I are so pleased that someone as accomplished and inspiring as Stacy Dean is joining the Global Food Institute in this critical leadership position," Carbonell said. "We look forward to continuing to support her and the important work of the institute."

Additional information about the Global Food Institute’s progress since its launch will be shared this summer.