Association for Healthcare Foodservice to honor two directors of nutrition, chef at annual conference

The Association for Healthcare Foodservice (AHF) will honor Deedra Hoffart, director of nutrition at Avista Adventist Hospital; Tony Almeida, director of food and nutrition at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital; and Timothy Gee, executive chef at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, at the AHF’s 2015 conference in Salt Lake City on June 5.

Hoffart is the recipient of the “Partnership in Leadership” award, presented to an AHF operator member who’s demonstrated a strong commitment to eliminating the outsourcing of food preparation.

“Our Nutrition team, along with senior leaders, other AHF members and business partners, has been able to orchestrate a remarkable turnaround at Avista Adventist Hospital by decreasing employee turnover by 39% and significantly increasing patient and employee satisfaction scores," said Hoffart.

Almeida, who also sits on FoodService Director’s advisory board, will take home the “Exemplary Leadership” award, given to the AHF member who best reflects the commitment to operational excellence brought to healthcare foodservice by Don Marsh, a past AHF board member who had a long career in the industry.

As the director of food and nutrition at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital for the past 24 years, Almeida spends much of his time teaching, and encouraging and supporting future healthcare leaders to keep foodservice departments self-operating for years to come.

Finally, Gee will be honored with the “Future Horizons” award, given to an AHF member who’s practiced in the healthcare foodservice industry for less than five years, is new to management and demonstrates a desire for future growth through contributions to their hospitals.

With three years’ experience with RWJUH’s management team as executive chef, Gee was heavily involved in creating a new culinary training program and patient menu, as well as starting RWJ Live in the dining room.

“(Gee) is a very ambitious young man who has accomplished many great things personally and professionally,” said Almeida. 

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