Confessions of Janet Paul Rice

Concordia College's Janet Paul Rice values frankness and loves great cheese.
Janet Paul Rice, associate director of dining services at Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn., and current NACUFS president, wants to stop worrying, doesn’t understand the big deal about cupcakes and admits indecisive customers can be annoying.

Q. What is the best part of your job?

I work with great people and food is really fun.

Q. What is the worst part of your job?

To me, “worst” implies “terrible,” and there aren’t any parts of my job that I’d consider terrible. Indecisive customers are rather annoying though.

Q. What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?

Getting my master’s degree while working full time and serving as NACUFS at-large director.

Q. What is the most unusual foodservice/catering request you have ever received?

Garrison Keillor’s request for a church basement supper—funeral hotdish, dead spread sandwiches, Jell-O—during a taping of “A Prairie Home Companion” on campus.

Q. Which talent would you most like to have?

I would like to be artistic.

Q. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I wish I could worry less.

Q. Which living person do you most admire?

Lately, I really admire Fargo’s mayor, Dennis Walaker. He has kept the city safe through three epic floods in the last three years.

Q. What is your favorite meal?

Some great cheese, a loaf of good bread, some olives and bottle of port.

Q. What is your "guilty pleasure?"

A splash of good wine while watching shows like “48 Hours Mystery.”

Q. What is the weirdest food you have ever eaten?

It doesn’t seem weird to me, but as kids, my sisters and I loved Ritz crackers dipped in Roka blue cheese dressing. I still eat it as a snack.

Q. What do you consider to be the most overrated foodservice trend?

I don’t understand the whole cupcake craze.

Q. What are your words to live by?

Be polite, be kind and don’t burn bridges if you can possibly help it.

More From FoodService Director

People in Foodservice
lucretia chancler

Lucretia Chancler’s roots lie in Louisiana’s St. Landry Parish. She grew up in the parish, and her mother taught in the school district for 33 years—even occasionally teaching young Lucretia. Advanced degrees and a post-grad job took her to Colorado, Georgia and other places, but St. Landry soon called Chancler back home.

In October 2009, Chancler returned to Louisiana to become St. Landry’s supervisor of child nutrition. The parish’s economic makeup is a big driver behind Chancler’s local mission: More than 85% of the 14,000 students at the parish’s 32 schools are eligible for...

Menu Development
chefs council spread

Last October, we published the results of FoodService Director’s first annual Chefs’ Council Menu Trends survey, revealing predictions for menu shake-ups in 2016 . Many of the predictions panned out, including an increase in snacking, ever-spicier flavor profiles, veg-centric plates, fresh-pressed juices and build-your-own options. Now we’re back with next year’s forecast, culled from our panel of 50 Chefs’ Council members—culinarians representing the core segments of noncommercial foodservice. Some of the flavors, ingredients and cuisines expand on current trends, while others go off in...

Ideas and Innovation
sushi plate

We wanted to add sushi, but that’s not really my expertise. So we found a great local company that offered to put three sushi chefs on-site every day. They supply the ingredients, and if we meet the minimum revenue each week, than we receive a percentage of sales. We have been exceeding the weekly minimum sales, which we track in our POS, in two days.

Managing Your Business
coffee barista

Whether it’s a morning routine, an afternoon pick-me-up or an evening social ritual, few things are as universally appealing as coffee. Sixty-five percent of respondents in Technomic’s 2016 Beverage Consumer Trend Report say they ordered a cup of hot joe from a foodservice location in the past month, and 59% say the same about cold coffee. Everyone has an opinion about what makes it good, whether it’s a low price, a unique blend or a friendly barista.

“Coffee is so personal. There are a lot of people that are Dunkin’ fans. There’s a lot of Starbucks people,” says James Dravenack,...

FSD Resources