Executive Director Resignation

With regret, Citrus County Harvest has accepted the resignation of Grace Hengesbach, Executive Director of Citrus County Harvest and the Blessings program, effective June 30, 2019, but wishes her well in her new endeavors. Hengesbach has served as Executive Director for four years. Under her leadership, the Blessings program has grown from serving nine Citrus County public schools to serving all 21 public schools, and four private schools. Under Hengesbach’s leadership, the financial status of the Blessings program has continued to flourish through her efforts to establish and grow relationships with our donors.

The founder of Harvest and Citrus County Blessings, Debbie Lattin, hired Hengesbach. Lattin said, “As a result of Grace’s influence and strength, she brought this organization to new heights. These achievements and goals could only have been accomplished by someone steering the ship with a passion for kids and the ability to guide and manage people.”

To better serve food insecure students, Hengesbach fostered partnerships with the Citrus County School Board and the Citrus County Education Foundation. Sam Himmel, Superintendent of Citrus County Schools reports that, “Under Grace’s leadership, more students were cared for, and as a result of her servant leadership and hard work, the Blessings programs grew to provide additional food to students during holidays and summers.” Shaunda Burdette, Executive Director of the Citrus County Education Foundation is deeply appreciative of Hengesbach’s efforts. “CCEF will continue to work with Citrus County Blessings, and continue the passion that Grace has instilled in all of us.”

The Harvest Board of Directors acknowledges Hengesbach’s decision to step away as a major loss. Joan Luebbe, Board Chairperson stated, “We are devastated by this news. Grace epitomizes a non-profit professional and she will be hard to replace. However, the Board and I are happy that she is starting a new chapter in her life.”

During her employment with Harvest, Hengesbach has also served on the board of the Citrus County Chamber of Commerce, and as president of the Young Professionals branch of the Chamber. She also served in leadership positions with the Crystal River Rotary Club.  Hengesbach describes the last four years as, “A fulfilling and wonderful experience. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to serve our community as an employee of this incredible organization.”

Plans to thank and honor Grace Hengesbach for her community efforts will be announced soon. The Harvest board will start a statewide search for a new Executive Director immediately. Interested parties should go to www.citruscountyblessings.org/careers to view a job description, minimum requirements, and guidelines for applying.