Current Newsletter

november 2014

Message from the President

Sam Oches
Editor, QSR magazine

Hello IFECers, and Happy Thanksgiving weekend!

We're nearly a month removed from the annual conference in Dallas, and I feel like I still haven't quite come down from the adrenaline rush. What a week we had! I've heard so many great things from all of you about how much you enjoyed the activity and learning stations, how useful you found your one-on-one meetings, how great a host both the city and hotel were (and, of course, how delicious all the food was). And I wholeheartedly agree with all of you. I think I speak for everyone when I say this was one of the best conferences we've had in years.  

Planning an event like the IFEC annual conference, of course, is no simple feat, and requires a ton of planning, strategizing, conference calling, brainstorming, and legwork throughout the year. Certainly none of it would be possible without Carol and Jen in the IFEC office-remember to thank them again for all the hard work they put in! But so many of the changes we implemented this year were actually born out of feedback we received from members after last year's conference. To this point, I want to encourage you once again to send us your thoughts on this year's conference by clicking on the appropriate links  and being as open and honest as possible about what you thought of this year's event. Trust me, we take the input very seriously. The link to the attendee survey is
The sponsor survey link is

I was honored to have been re-elected president this year, and want to say thanks to the board and to all of you who entrust me with the position. I'm really excited for the coming year, mostly because there's so much we dreamed up in the last 12 months that we hadn't yet gotten a chance to push through. Some of that is built into our five-year strategic plan, which the board will be voting on in the next month and which we'll be implementing in 2015. You should've received a Dropbox link from Carol with the details of our plan; if you have any thoughts about that, please let us know so we can incorporate it into the final draft. 

Once again, the link is  )

I'll be in touch next month with some more information on our five-year plan and its roll-out strategy. For now, though, enjoy the holiday weekend with your family and friends, and keep safe from all the nasty weather. Wherever you are, be sure to take a break-you deserve one.

-- Sam

Kay Orde Wins The Betty

No one in the audience at The Betty award lunch in Dallas seemed surprised when the much-anticipated announcement came  - except the awardee herself. Kay Orde was so focused on getting her camera ready to shoot the winner that it took her a moment to realize it was her name that was called. A member since 2003, Kay has served IFEC in many capacities, including secretary of the board of directors, Chef Showcase co-chair (two years in a row), and member of the Professional Development Awards and Mentoring/New Member Orientation committees.

In nominating Kay, Katie Ayoub (Flavor & The Menu) said, "I have worked with her as both a writer, pitching article ideas and as a publicist, pitching magazine placement. She has always been receptive, attentive and professional in those exchanges. Kay gives her heart and mind to IFEC, and I can think of no one more deserving of the Betty." Katie was one of four IFECers who proposed Kay.

Before becoming editor-in-chief of The National Culinary Review, Kay worked in communications for the American Culinary Federation (ACF), St. Augustine, FL, producing the membership newsletter Center of the Plate. Her background includes: staff writer, The Chapel Hill News, Chapel Hill, N.C.; technical writer, Research and Evaluation Associates, Chapel Hill; staff writer/editor, Research Triangle Institute, Research Triangle Park, N.C.; freelance writer, Durham Morning Herald, Durham, N.C., and several area magazines. Prior to joining ACF, she taught English at Flagler College, St. Augustine.

A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a bachelor's degree in journalism and honors in creative writing, Kay earned a master's degree in English and environmental studies at North Carolina State University, Raleigh, N.C. She lives in St. Augustine with her husband, author Lewis Orde. The couple has two married daughters and three grandchildren.

The Betty Bastion Outstanding Service Award, aka The Betty, is presented annually to celebrate a member who has provided extraordinary service to IFEC and the foodservice communications field and stands out as a knowledgeable and generous professional.  Named for Betty Bastion Varese, who retired as IFEC's first executive director in 1991, the award was inaugurated that year. Thanks to a little help from our friends, this year's presentation was especially exciting, opening with a video celebrating past recipients (there have been 24 in all) leading up to John Scroggins anouncing Kay.  John (NOBLE) was last year's honoree. The original Betty (Bastion Varese) and 15 previous Betty winners were on hand to help congratulate Kay. A big thanks to John Lawn for producing the video. (John is a consultant and a former editor of Food Management.)

And The TerrIFECer goes to Liz Grossman
Introduced in 2012 to recognize rising stars, this year's TerrIFECer was awarded to Liz Grossman, managing editor of Plate magazine.  A member since 2007, Liz has served on the board of directors and dived into committee work, including co-chairing the NRA three years running and Chef Showcase for two, and participating on a conference agenda taskforce,  and the Website Development and Wines & Spirits committees.

A  Chicago-based writer and editor for 15 years, Liz is also the co-founder of food-themed live literary series, Between Bites, and has taught food-writing workshops for kids at 826Chi. Throughout her career, her freelance work has appeared in Newsweek, Southwest Spirit, Robb Report, CNN Traveller,, Veranda, Chicago magazine, CS, Indianapolis Monthly and others. Her September 2013 Between Bites story was recently published in the issue six of food literary magazine Graze. Follow her foodie adventures on instagram @elizabites_chi.

According to Peggy McCormick (MMM Marketing), who nominated her, "Liz is another fantastic IFEC volunteer! She has very handily set up the IFEC Reception in Chicago and it's always in a great location. She is a delight to work with on any project and is always very professional as well as fun."

New Leadership

Congratulations to the new officers and members of the board of directors . They are Sam Oches, QSR, who was re-elected president, Cathy Holley, Flavor & The Menu, vice president; Bill Schreiber, Bissell Street Public Relations, secretary;  Rachel Tracey, Olson Communications, treasurer, and new directors Katie Ayoub, Flavor & The Menu; Patty Fitzgerald, School Nutrition; Megan Bykowski, Stephan & Brady, and Amy Rosendahl, DEEP.

About People                   
Congratulations to Scott Allmendinger, who has been appointed co-director of CIA Consulting for The Culinary Institute of America.  Scott will be responsible for driving sales and directing the college's relationship with the food industry, including consulting arrangements and custom programs. He will also work closely with the CIA's industry clients on menu development projects and research & development programs.  Scott most recently served as executive vice president of CSP Business Media and is a past president of IFEC.

From the Where Are They Now? Department comes news of Lee Chaharyn, a former editor of  Campus Dining Today and former IFEC board member. Lee left NACUFS and the magazine to attend culinary school in Denver and stayed on in the mile-high city, baking for Whole Foods Market and later running their cooking school.  There followed a move to Richmond, VA, where she headed up Sur la Table's cooking school.  Now she's special project manager for Campus Services at the University of Richmond working on dining, retail, catering, events, bookstore, post office, and printing assignments.  She is also doing freelance writing and recipe editing, frequently for Richmond magazine and Campus Dining Today and is just about to visit Antarctica with a National Geographic expedition. You can find Lee on Linked In.

Tell your favorite chefs, culinary educators  and foodservice buyers about Southwind Farms' Fingerlicious recipe contest. Here's the news from Sherise Jones, Sherise Jones Public Relations:  The contest is open to culinary educators and chefs or foodservice professionals in restaurants (independent or chain), colleges/universities, contract operations, hotels/resorts, casinos, cruise lines and supermarket prepared foods sections. The grand prize, valued at $6,000, includes a three-day Idah7o culinary experience (with travel and lodging), a professionally produced video and $1,000 cash. Buyers who refer one of the three top winning entries are eligible to win a cash prize of up to $500. Entry deadline is March 15th. See for details.

Here's one for your culinary instructor friends -- Mary Petersen, Café/The Gold Medal Classroom, let us in on a new contest sponsored by Unilever Foodsolutions challenging culinary instructors to remake familiar dishes to be more calorie/health conscious and produce a lesson plan for teaching these principles. Grand prize is $1,000 and a complimentary registration to the Café Leadership conference. Deadline is April 15th. Details at

Wanted: Baby Faces for our Website Gallery
The most recent addition to our website's photo gallery of IFEC Junior Members is Amy Rosendahl's handsome little toddler.  If you haven't sent us your baby's photo, do it now. You'll find the gallery at


NRA Reception, Chicago - May 18, 2015

Annual Conference, Portland, Maine, November 2-4, 2015

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New clients/new services/new editorial features? Share it with your colleagues in the IFEC newsletter - it's a useful and very easy way to network, which is what IFEC is all about!

Send news and comments to:

Carol Lally
Executive Director
845-229-6973 / /