Our core staff members work closely with many volunteers to ensure the Friendship Center is meeting the needs of the community with kindness and empathy.

Photo of Ross Outten holding microgreens at a farmers market

Ross Outten, Director of Development

Contact Ross about:
Donations | Events | Food & Cooking | Fundraising

Ross joined the Friendship Center team in 2017 and led the effort to move operations into a new location and launch a hot meal program. After a 20-year career in hospitality – including five years as owner/operator of Dolce Casa Cafe on Damen Avenue – he pivoted to put his cooking skills and people skills to work for neighbors in need. Ross previously led the Greater Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce and continues to collaborate with area businesses that support the food pantry in numerous ways. He is grateful for the community partners, churches, volunteers and board members who generously contribute their time, treasure and talent to make our work possible.

Photo of Alex in front of the Friendship Center's welcome wall

Alex, Manager of Operations & Logistics

Contact Alex about:
Daily Operations | Delivery Maintenance | Volunteering

Alex was born and raised in our fair city, and is the rare Chicagoan who roots for both the Cubs and White Sox. He enjoys managing an interesting and diverse group of volunteers and helping people who are struggling to get the food they need. He has earned the nickname “Tetris Grand Master” for his skill in squeezing as much food as possible into every square inch of storage space.

Photo of Greta Bailey

Greta Bailey, Finance & Communications Coordinator

Contact Greta about:
Event Publicity | Monetary Donations | Social Media

Greta first joined the Friendship Center in 2015 and took on a larger role in 2020. She previously held accounting positions with small nonprofits and was the investment coordinator at National Covenant Properties. Greta graduated from North Park University and grew up attending Winnetka Covenant Church. She and her husband live in the western suburbs with their four children, one dog, one cat and two guinea pigs. In her free time, Greta enjoys gardening and spending time with her family and friends. She considers it an honor to work for the Friendship Center because she knows she’s making a real difference.