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FAME Awards Presented at SNA Event

FAME Awards Presented at SNA Event

(clockwise from top) FAME Golden Award winner Pavel Matustik; Friend of Child Nutrition winner Jeanne Sneed; winners and sponsors group photo: (front row, l. to r.) Mary Lou Henry (Silver Spirit), Sneed, Lora Gilbert (Silver Rising Star), David Brown (Silver Leadership), Julia Johnson (Silver Special Achievement), Cindy Freeman of Basic American Foods, Nadine Doetterl of Campbell's Foodservice. (back, l. to r.) Heidi Spencer of Basic American, Angela Chan and Doug Werts of Edibowls, Barbara Jirka of Tyson Foods, Lynn Burke of Campbell's, Randy Collins of Tyson, Matustik, and Sonjia Kinsey (Silver Management).

Some of the brightest stars of the school foodservice world were honored recently at the annual Child Nutrition Industry Conference of the School Nutrition Association (SNA) held at the Disney Contemporary Hotel in Orlando. The event included the presentation of the 17th Annual Foodservice Achievement Management Excellence (FAME) Awards to leaders in school foodservice and nutrition.

The FAME Awards recognize school foodservice professionals who go above and beyond in foodservice achievement and management excellence.

Pavel N. Matustik, SFNS, MA, chief administrative officer of the Joint Powers Agreement (JPA) Santa Clarita Valley School Food Services Agency in Valencia, Calif., received the top honor, the FAME Golden School Foodservice Director of the Year Award for demonstrating outstanding achievement in leadership, dedication, innovation, management, career awards, community involvement and bettering the lives of students. Matustik's agency manages USDA commodity distribution and processing for 200 California school districts that together represent more than a million daily meals.

JPA is the largest commodity-purchasing co-op in the country. Matustik's outstanding fiscal management abilities allowed him to take it from three districts with 14 schools and 2,000 ADP to 5 districts with 41 schools and more than 12,000 ADP.

When he was first hired in 1993, the agency was losing approximately $200,000 annually, but Matustik was able to turn a profit in 18 months. Since 1997, the agency has regularly exceeding its financial goals and was able to pay back the initial investment to its original three members of more than $2,580,000 while still increasing its reserves to 20 percent of expenditures.

Jeannie Sneed, PhD, RD, SFNS, professor and director of graduate education at Iowa State University (ISU) in Ames, Iowa, received the FAME Silver Friend of Child Nutrition Award for supporting child nutrition beyond the scope of normal professional duties. She is responsible for establishing the ISU Child Nutrition Leadership Academy, a PhD program for those in foodservice management focusing on child nutrition. She also helped launch an online Master's Degree program for foodservice directors that is offered through her university.

Basic American Foods, Campbell's Foodservice, Edibowls, and Tyson Foods, Inc. sponsor the National FAME Awards. For more information, visit the FAME Web site at

Other winners included: David Brown, executive director of foodservice, Dallas Independent School District Food & Child Nutrition Services (Silver Leadership Award); Mary Lou Henry, foodservice director, Knox County (Knoxville, TN) School District, (Silver Spirit Award); Lora Gilbert, MS, RD, FADA, director of food and nutrition services, Orange County (Orlando, FL) Public Schools, (Silver Rising Star Award); Julia Johnson, SFNS, school nutrition director, Ware County (Waycross, GA) School District (Silver Special Achievement Award); Sonjia Kinsey, M.S., human resources & training and director of operations/training, Dallas ISD Food & Child Nutrition Services (Silver Management Award).

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