The Foodbank of Santa Barbara County on Tuesday announced Erik Talkin as its new executive director.

Talkin brings extensive experience to the position, including expertise in the areas of fundraising, public relations, financial and business management, and innovative program development.

Talkin also brings to the Foodbank hands-on experience, having served as the executive director of the Community Kitchen of Santa Barbara, where he worked closely with the Foodbank on a number of programs.

In his new position, Talkin is excited to tackle the many issues associated with hunger and address the problem of the increasing number of children facing physical and emotional complications related to their lack of nutritious food.

“What you put in your stomach is as important as what you put in your brain.  I believe that nutrition is as important as education – you have a chance to educate the body to be healthy.  That is why I am so excited about the Foodbank’s programs to tackle problems with childhood nutrition,” Talkin said.

Before entering the nonprofit arena, Talkin, who was brought up in London, England, worked to establish his own media production company. This produced major events and videos for some of the world’s largest corporations.  This endeavor allowed Talkin the opportunity to utilize his knowledge of marketing and corporate development, as well as fine-tune his business and management acumen.

“Nonprofits need to remember that they are businesses, and need to be run accordingly,” Talkin said. “Our shareholders are the clients that we serve, so everything the business does needs to be geared toward helping them.  I look forward to sustaining the range of new programs and bringing greater awareness of, and support for, the Foodbank’s important work in the community.”

Talkin is involved in the Lompoc Theatre restoration project.

With warehouses in Santa Barbara and Santa Maria, the Foodbank serves more than 200 social service organizations and churches. In 2007, the Foodbank distributed more than 6.5 million pounds of food to the 100,000 people in need throughout Santa Barbara County.

Kerry Aller is the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County‘s community relations manager.