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Josh Protas Joins Meals on Wheels America as Chief Advocacy and Policy Officer

Apr 04, 2024

Arlington, VA – April 4, 2024 — Josh Protas has joined Meals on Wheels America – the leadership organization supporting the more than 5,000 community-based Meals on Wheels programs across the country – as the organization’s new Chief Advocacy and Policy Officer. Protas started his work at Meals on Wheels America on April 1 and will leverage his extensive government affairs experience as he oversees advocacy campaigns and initiatives designed to support nutrition and social connection for the nationwide network of senior nutrition programs and the older adults they serve.

Protas will continue his predecessor Erika Debrick Kelly’s 13 years of crucial work building bipartisan partnerships and coalitions while representing Meals on Wheels America and community-based nutrition programs before Congress, the Administration, and anti-hunger and aging advocates.

“Already well versed in our issues, Josh is a wonderful asset to our team,” said Ellie Hollander, President and Chief Executive Officer at Meals on Wheels America. “He has worked closely with many of the same anti-hunger and aging organizations with which Meals on Wheels America regularly collaborates and has extensive experience working at both the local and national levels. We’re looking forward to seeing Josh build upon the incredible legacy Erika Debrick Kelly leaves behind.” 

Prior to joining Meals on Wheels America, Protas most recently was the Vice President of Public Policy for MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger. His years of experience coordinating and implementing comprehensive advocacy agendas to protect and improve federal nutrition assistance programs – emphasizing the food security needs of overlooked populations such as veterans, military families, older adults, college students, indigenous communities and the people of Puerto Rico – will be invaluable to the Meals on Wheels America team.

“In my new role at Meals on Wheels America, I’m excited to help bring the organization’s vision of an America in which all seniors live nourished lives with independence and dignity to life,” said Protas. “For over 11 years at MAZON, it was my honor to help advance the anti-hunger movement’s goals to protect, strengthen and expand our federal food assistance safety net, and I’m looking forward to bringing this experience to Meals on Wheels America. At a time when 2.5 million seniors in need are not being reached and one in three local Meals on Wheels programs has a waitlist, my first priority for the months ahead is urging Congress to increase funding for senior nutrition programs and support the reauthorization of the Older Americans Act to help seniors age successfully in their homes.”

To learn more about how Meals on Wheels opens the door to addressing nutrition, social connection, safety and so much more, visit   

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About Meals on Wheels America
Meals on Wheels America is the leadership organization supporting the more than 5,000 community-based programs across the country that are dedicated to addressing senior hunger and isolation. Powered by a trusted volunteer workforce, this network delivers a comprehensive solution that begins with a meal and is proven to enable independence and well-being through the additional benefits of tailored nutrition, social connection, safety and much more. By providing funding, programming, education, research and advocacy, Meals on Wheels America empowers its local member programs to strengthen their communities, one senior at a time. For more information, or to find a Meals on Wheels provider near you, visit