Community Profile: Ivan Jackson strives to keep LIFT-UP in the mix to tackle local food insecurity

Lift-Up’s new director, Ivan Jackson, fills a cooler with perishable food at the Rifle Lift-Up store before it’s distributed.
Chelsea Self / Post Independent

Ivan Jackson joined LIFT-UP as the new Executive Director in August.

Originally from London, Jackson worked in the Boulder area before coming to Garfield County and brings a long history of working in communities in the non-profit sector. So far, he has mainly focused on sports programs for young people.

Jackson has resided in the United States for over 25 years, most recently outside of Boulder.



He and his wife Kate have a blended family of six children.

LIFT-UP, which stands for Life Interfaith Team on Unemployment and Poverty, has served Garfield County and the greater Roaring Fork Valley area for 40 years.



What brought you to USA / Colorado?

I had the opportunity to work for a nonprofit youth track and field program in the United States about 25 years ago.

Schooling ?

Diploma in Business Administration

Family?

My wife Kate and I have a blended family of six children.

Hobby?

Family hike.

What prompted you to work in the non-profit sector?

Giving back to communities, especially after what we have been through for the past 18 months. The pandemic made me realize how lucky I am and how family we are. The idea of ​​helping people survive on a daily basis seemed very important to me and a task that I wanted to undertake.

What experiences have prepared you for your current role at LIFT-UP?

I have a long history of working in communities in the non-profit sector, primarily focused on youth athletic and mentoring programs. I have been managing director for 10 years.

What are your goals for the organization?

Build on the great work and reputation that LIFT-UP staff and board of directors have developed over nearly 40 years to reduce food insecurity in the “valley”.

Are there any parallels / contrasts between poverty in the UK and here in the US that you can talk about?

Unfortunately, food insecurity exists in the UK as well as the US, but when I lived in the UK I was not involved in solving the problem.

Any observations during the pandemic from which we can draw lessons in terms of covering basic needs?

During the pandemic, food insecurity increased dramatically and the community response to meet these needs was remarkable. Continuing to work with the community and continuing to raise awareness about food insecurity is essential if we are to help address the ongoing problem.

Senior Journalist / Editor John Stroud can be reached at 970-384-9160 or jstroud@postindependent.com.

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