Joseph Charette named executive director at Rutgers

Sept. 8—After a national search that began last October, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, in New Brunswick, has announced that Joseph Charette is its new executive director of dining services.

Charette has been part of the dining services team at Rutgers for the past 22 years, most recently serving as associate director of dining services. Charette will assume his new position when Charles Sams, current executive director of dining services, retires at the end of the month.

Speaking to The Daily Targum, the campus newspaper, Vice President of Student Affairs Gregory Blimling said: "Joe's experience, his great depth of knowledge about dining service, his very successful record as the associate director of Dining Services, his knowledge of Rutgers University and how we work with him in the institution made my decision very easy to hire him. I am amazed at the depth of his knowledge about various kinds of food service operations and about what is necessary to make those operations successful."

Charette has been with the department since 1989. As the associate director, Charette managed operations in the dining halls, working with food buyers, concessions, catering and cash operations. Prior to Rutgers, he worked in restaurants, including Bennigan's franchises in the Southwest. Charette attended Rutgers’ Cook College, where he double majored in environmental science and agricultural science.

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
phone bed call sick

We make people call and directly talk to their boss or supervisor if they are reporting an absence for a shift. While it is more cumbersome, it is a conscious decision. We have adapted and implemented electronic methods to obtain efficiencies in just about every other functional area, except for electronic absence reporting systems. The direct supervisor can put more pressure on an employee to show up—especially those with some form of the “Super Bowl plague”—than any electronic system can.

Menu Development
ranch dressing chicken fingers

While salad bars are often the first place K-12 operators look to incorporate more fresh produce, few go as far as making their own salad dressings. But last fall, in a continuing effort to transition from prepackaged meals to an all-scratch menu, Mark Augustine, executive chef of culinary and nutrition services for Minneapolis Public Schools, switched to concocting four varieties in-house—ranch, Caesar, Italian and Asian vinaigrette. The move, designed to eliminate artificial ingredients and lower fat and sodium, presented the biggest challenge when it came to ranch dressing, the school-...

Ideas and Innovation
business card

We get the new folks abridged business cards saying, “Hi, my name is so-and-so and I work in nutrition department.” We thought it would give them more ownership of the program and elevate their status and position in the organization. It also gives our team more self-confidence and self-worth as an employee, which can be a challenge with foodservice workers.

Ideas and Innovation
tug hospital robot

Automation has opened up in recent years as foodservice operators across the country grapple with labor shortages. Robots deliver food trays to patients in hospitals, and they make sushi on college campuses. For some operators, they’re worthwhile to reduce strain on human employees and increase productivity.

Robots roamed the hallways when the University of California San Francisco Medical Center’s new Mission Bay campus opened last year. Though these robots have nicknames like Wall-E and Tuggie McFresh, they’re not a novelty. They’re a solution to a problem that administrators...

FSD Resources