CAMDEN COUNTY, GEORGIA – Dawn Eggleston, CEO of nonprofit Our Daily Bread, Inc., has plead guilty to one count of Criminal Attempt to Commit a Felony for her role in a scheme to claim over $800,000 in fraudulent reimbursements involving meals for low-income children.
The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) is a federally-funded and state-administered program that feeds nutritious meals to children in low-income areas when schools are closed for summer vacation. In Georgia, the program feeds children free of charge through sponsors that utilize sites approved by the Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning (DECAL). SFSP provides an estimated 5-6 million meals a summer for approximately 82,000 children each day in the State.
In 2017, Our Daily Bread, Inc., provided SFSP meals at 177 different locations from Brunswick to Albany encompassing most of Southern Georgia. After routine evaluations at multiple sites, DECAL administrators suspected that CEO Dawn Eggleston had misrepresented the total number of meals actually served. Subsequent surveillance by the Office of the State Inspector General and other investigating agencies confirmed that Eggleston regularly inflated the meal counts, and that Eggleston submitted a fraudulent reimbursement in the amount of $831,354 for July 2017. As a result of this investigation, DECAL rejected the reimbursement request.
On May 22, 2023, Eggleston plead guilty and was sentenced to five years of probation under the supervision of the Department of Community Supervision and a $3,600 fine. Eggleston was also ordered to complete 300 hours of community service.