Our Story

Operation BBQ Relief was founded in May 2011 in response to a need for relief efforts in tornado-stricken Joplin, Missouri, a community of about 50,000 residents. Competition barbecue teams from eight states answered the call to help feed displaced families and emergency personnel. The group was able to serve over 120,000 meals over 11 days. Food was delivered to shelters, hospitals, senior living communities and the Humane Society. Volunteers loaded food into vehicles and delivered directly to families in the impacted areas. The operation was made possible by all who contributed food and supplies and funding from across the country.

Stan Hays

Stan Hays

Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer (President)

Why did you get involved?
Because the feeling you get providing warm BBQ meals to those in need and the hardworking first responders is amazing, I can’t think of another way to say it.

shays@operationbbqrelief.org

Will Cleaver

Will Cleaver

Co-Founder, COO / CFO (Vice-President)

Why did you get involved?
I have looked for different ways I could possible make a difference in this world, with OBR I feel like my talents and convictions can best be used to help others in times of need.

wcleaver@operationbbqrelief.org

Paul Peterson

Paul Peterson

Director - Corporate Relations

Why did you get involved?
I got involved with OBR to help others. I stay involved because of the amazing volunteers and partners that come together during a disasters and just make things happen! The look on someone’s face when you hand them a hot meal says it all. This is the best the human spirit has to offer. Partners and volunteers, selfless giving during another’s time of need is just an amazing thing to experience.

ppeterson@operationbbqrelief.org

Jeremy Bruce

Jeremy Bruce

Chief Technology Officer

Why did you get involved?
Knowing that I am making a difference in a person’s life during a time of need is so gratifying. OBR makes a difference in the world one meal at a time and I am so honored to be a part of this great organization!

jbruce@operationbbqrelief.org

David Marks

David Marks

Chief Marketing Officer

Why did you get involved?
October 29, Hurricane Sandy came barreling up the East Coast. I saw all the devastation around me and on the news. I knew that I was the lucky one, and I needed to do something. I assembled some food supplies, packed my bags, hooked up and was on the move.

dmarks@operationbbqrelief.org

Dana Reed

Dana Reed

Chief Volunteer Officer

Why did you get involved?
Being involved with OBR is to be part of something bigger than any one person. To witness how a group of people completely unknown to each other can converge on a disaster scene and start to provide hope and compassion one meal at a time is indescribable. This has been my experience since 2012 and looking forward to serving alongside the countless volunteers that share in OBR’s mission.

dreed@operationbbqrelief.org

Bryan Roppolo

Bryan Roppolo

Director Field Operations

Why did you get involved?
I enjoy cooking for others, and I also enjoy giving back to those in need. So when this Organization asked me to be apart of it it brought my 2 passions together.

broppolo@operationbbqrelief.org

Scott Guy

Scott Guy

Operations, Memphis Warehouse

Why did you get involved? I volunteer for Operation BBQ Relief because I love to help people in need. I have a strong drive to make things work no matter how hard they are.

John Orr

John Orr

Secretary / Swag Shop Manager

Why did you get involved? It allows me to do something I love, BBQ, and help those in need.

jorr@operationbbqrelief.org

Shane Petzold

Shane Petzold

Director of Facilities and Equipment

Why did you get involved? I volunteer for Operation BBQ Relief because I love to help people in need. I have a strong drive to make things work no matter how hard they are.

spetzold@operationbbqrelief.org

Patrick Banks

Patrick Banks

Operations

Why did you get involved? Patrick and Kathy became involved with Operation BBQ Relief in the spring of 2012.

pbanks@operationbbqrelief.org

Dewayne Daniel

Dewayne Daniel

Director of State & Territory Leads

Why did you get involved?
I volunteer for OBR because I love to help people in need. I have a strong drive to make things work no matter how hard they are.

Stuart Cohen

Stuart Cohen

Operations
Joey Rusek

Joey Rusek

Inventory Control / Territory 1 Director
John Wheeler

John Wheeler

Disaster Operations
Brian Polak

Brian Polak

Director of Volunteer Management
Mike Richter

Mike Richter

Territory 2 Director
Chris Kelly

Chris Kelly

Territory 4 Director
Mike Davis

Mike Davis

Ambassador Program Manager
Mike Moore

Mike Moore

OBR Ambassador
Elaine Moore

Elaine Moore

OBR Ambassador

Karen Espey

Karen Espey

National Volunteer Coordinator
Patrick Paquette

Patrick Paquette

Territory I Director
Bill Jones

Bill Jones

State Lead
Amy Hays

Amy Hays

Missouri State Lead

State Leads Map

Hover over the map to view State Leads for each state. We are in need of more volunteers to become State Leads in the states lighter in color and labeled “Open.”

If you are interested in becoming a State Lead in your area, please email us here.

State Leads Map Placeholder
State Leads Map