New Staff Spotlight – Phillisha Wathen
Indy Hunger Network continued to expand its staff in April by hiring Phillisha Wathen as the organization’s new Office Administrator.
Wathen comes to IHN as a recent graduate of Indiana University Bloomington where she earned a master’s degree in arts administration and public affairs with a concentration in nonprofit management from the O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs. Coming out of her graduate program, she was interested in starting a career in nonprofit work, which led her to Indy Hunger Network.
“Right now I’m at a phase of my life where I’m exploring nonprofit and I feel like I’ve found a home with a nonprofit that I think is doing really impactful work and has a broad connection to the greater community,” Wathen said. “A lot of nonprofits I’ve worked with in the past are more centralized in terms of their outreach and I really appreciate that IHN is really connected with a lot of other organizations and does a lot of coordination between a lot of programs and services. That is what attracted me to it, because I love to do outreach and connect with people.”
As part of her new role with Indy Hunger Network, Wathen will be responsible for coordinating operations within the IHN office. Her work will cross over into every project and program area in the organization, and will ensure that those projects are organized and run as efficiently as possible. She is excited to be joining Indy Hunger Network during such an exciting growth period within the organization as strategic planning is getting underway.
“It’s almost like coming in on the ground floor,” Wathen said. “Strategic planning is when an organization takes time to reflect on itself and then rebuild and redirect. I really do like coming in during that time because you get to be a part of [that growth]. You get to see how the larger team is thinking and where they want to go, which gets you excited for the years down the road because you create that map of where you’ll be going.”
Wathen was also drawn to IHN because of its mission to forge connections among food leaders in the community, and wants to help increase access to food in Greater Indianapolis.
“No one person or institution can serve everyone or know everything as far as what resources are out there,” Wathen said. “Having an institution that works to push information out there about resources and services that are available and also make sure that other organizations can work together to receive information and feedback is important. Where I can fill a niche and serve those organizations in this area is where I’ll thrive.”