Allison O'Toole

Meet Second Harvest Heartland’s New CEO, Allison O’Toole

After a comprehensive, national search process, our board of directors chose nonprofit leader and veteran changemaker Allison O’Toole as Second Harvest Heartland’s new leader. O’Toole will succeed Rob Zeaske, CEO of Second Harvest Heartland since 2008.

“Allison’s nonprofit leadership experience, her ability to guide teams, oversee and improve complex operations and hone strategy—all in the service of positive change for Minnesotans—made her the clear standout,” said board member and retired Bremer Bank executive Greg Hilding, who will act as interim CEO until O’Toole assumes her new role.

O’Toole successfully led MNsure, a large, complex organization within a rapidly changing industry and brings deep health policy expertise and food-as-health knowledge to the organization.

“Second Harvest Heartland is poised to scale up our operations and partnerships to more fully address the problem of hunger. We’re ready to gather more healthy food where there is plenty and deliver it where there is need,” said Marsha Shotley, chief philanthropy officer. “Allison is the strong leader to get us there.” 

O’Toole will join us in February after serving as the senior director of state affairs at United States of Care and, previously, as the CEO of MNsure. She plans to follow in the footsteps of her predecessor and spend the first few months of her new charge getting to know Second Harvest Heartland staff members and familiarizing herself with the vast network of agencies we partner with. 

We are confident that our deep bench of leaders and the strength of the hunger-relief network position us well for this time of growth and change.