Meet 2015 Silver Plate winner Nona Golledge

nona golledge

Asked to name her greatest achievement, Nona Golledge singles out guiding Kansas University Dining through a university-mandated merger of the residential dining and retail-catering departments. It was no easy feat. In just two months, Golledge—who was FoodService Director magazine’s 2010 FSD of the Year—was able to successfully boost employee morale, address challenges and ultimately grow department sales. After the merger completed in 2005, retail sales at KU Dining increased by 36 percent and catering sales rose 31 percent.

Despite being a self-described worrier (as she once admitted in a FSD magazine interview), Golledge finds an opportunity in every challenge. Throughout her career, which spans 34 years in the foodservice business—most of it in the college and university segment, including nine years as director of KU Dining—she has delivered on a vision that prioritizes sustainability, wellness and the mentorship of rising foodservice professionals.

1. Sustainability at the center

During her tenure at KU Dining, Golledge has launched multiple sustainability initiatives, including eliminating trays in the dining halls, making the switch to biodegradable disposables and planting a rooftop herb garden. Dining services also partnered with a composting facility that picks up the university’s food waste. Each year, the campus diverts 1,000 pounds of waste from landfills with its sustainability practices. In 2008, the department received the Campus Leader Award from the university’s Center for Sustainability.

2. Rapid renovations

Since leading her department through the merger a decade ago, Golledge has overseen numerous renovations as part of the school’s 10-year strategic plan. In that time, KU Dining has expanded from 10 locations to 22. One of the most notable projects was a 2013 renovation of the residential dining commons that was completed in a mere 78 days.

3. Health away from home

Helping students to make smart choices is a top priority. Under Golledge’s direction, KU Dining adopted a new mission, branding itself in the eyes of students as “Your Campus Kitchen Table,” a tagline it touts on its social media channels. And each summer, her department hosts two NACUFS interns. “My advice to new foodservice professionals is to learn as much about the industry as possible, stay abreast of trends and lead from the heart,” Golledge told the International Foodservice Managers Association. 

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

In a bid to beef up its presence in sports arenas and a variety of other large venues, Sodexo will acquire foodservice vendor Centerplate for $675 million.

Sodexo says the deal, which is expected to be finalized by the end of this year, will more than double its global footprint.

Centerplate, which serves as the foodservice operator for a number for stadiums, convention halls and other event spaces, brought in revenues of $998 million for the year ending June 2017, according to Sodexo. Centerplate was purchased five years ago by Olympus Partners, a private-equity company...

Menu Development

Loyola University Maryland took a new approach to all-day breakfast with an egg-focused concept.

Breakfast options were top of mind for students when asked what they would like to see on the menu at the university’s revamped Boulder Garden Cafe. Instead of creating an all-day breakfast station, however, the Baltimore-based dining team went beyond traditional options and created a concept that services all mealparts with eggs.

“It can be somewhat mundane,” says Executive Chef Don Crowther on why the team strayed away from the trendy all-day breakfast. At the eatery’s Sunny...

Industry News & Opinion

The University of Kansas has added a retail pass that allows students to purchase one to-go combo meal per day at cafes and markets on campus, the University Daily Kansan reports.

The pass is available on two different meal plans and is geared toward on-the-go students who don’t have the time to sit down and eat at a residence hall.

“It has increased the participation rate,” Jamie Reed, a service assistant for the school’s dining services, told the University Daily Kansan.

Over 1,800 students have used the pass since its debut at the beginning of the semester....

Industry News & Opinion

The University of Minnesota dining team has created a vegan student group in an effort to improve the school’s vegan offerings, Minnesota Daily reports.

The group was created by the school’s foodservice vendor, Aramark, and its campus sustainability coordinator, who is vegan, after receiving numerous complaints from students about the lack of vegan options on campus.

The group will this week host its first meeting, during which members will be able to share feedback and provide solutions to help enhance the school’s vegan offerings. Members will also keep a photo journal...

FSD Resources