Confessions of Robin Rush

Kingman Regional Medical Center's Robin Rush doesn't understand hospital room service.
Robin Rush, director of nutrition services at 234-bed Kingman Regional Medical Center in Arizona, questions molecular cuisine and the need for room service. Robin Rush, director of nutrition services at 234-bed Kingman Regional Medical Center in Arizona, questions molecular cuisine and the need for room service.

Q. What is the best part of your job?

The executive leadership staff is overwhelmingly wonderful.

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

We have patient satisfaction scores in the top 1% in the country for Press Ganey, and that’s using an old-fashioned trayline.

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

We had a terminally ill patient whose last wish was to marry his longtime fiancé. The hospital staff wanted to provide a “wedding” for the couple. Our bakery chef, Victoria, was able to produce a beautiful tiered wedding cake within a couple of hours.

Q. If you weren't in foodservice what would you be doing?

Probably something with computers, like designing software.

Q. Which talent would you most like to have?

I’d like to cook with “magic.” Some people can add a pinch of this and that, and it comes out great.

Q. What is your greatest fear?

Something that would physically prevent me from being able to work.

Q. Which living person do you most admire?

It’s a tie between Margaret Thatcher and Clarence Thomas as they are both remarkable people.

Q. What is your "guilty pleasure?"

Dark chocolate.

Q. What food fad do you wish had never started?

Molecular cuisine. Foam, in particular, does not look at all appetizing to me.

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

Camel.

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

Room service in hospitals. It’s a lot of money and you can get good patient satisfaction without it. For us, it’s the personal attention that we pay to each patient that makes the difference.

Q. What are your words to live by?

When faced with a challenge look for a way, not a way out.

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
coffee shop trailor graphic

A familiar face is coming to the roads of Rutgers University this fall: the Starbucks mermaid. The New Brunswick, N.J.-based school is testing a Starbucks truck throughout the upcoming semester, NJ.com reports . The company began testing trucks on college campuses in 2014, and now has mobile locations at Arizona State University, James Madison University in Virginia, East Carolina University in North Carolina and Sacramento State in California.

The trucks will serve the full lineup of Starbucks beverages that’s available at the outlet’s brick-and-mortar location at Rutgers,...

Industry News & Opinion

A study from Virginia Tech has found a connection between school meal participation and obesity in students. From data that predates the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act , the findings raise questions over whether nutrition standards go far enough.

The research evaluated data from 1998 to 2007, comparing first through eighth grade students who partook in free and reduced-price lunch and those who qualified but opted out. Wen You, associate professor in the Department of Agriculture and Applied Economics at Virginia Tech, says she expected to validate theories that increased breakfast...

Industry News & Opinion

Buffalo Public Schools is turning to local chefs and a little competition to help create new menu items, the Buffalo News reports .

In October, local chefs will compete against each other and a team of seven to 10 students led by chef Bobby Anderson, a former contestant on “Hell’s Kitchen,” to create lunch recipes that comply with USDA nutritional requirements and use seasonal produce sourced locally.

“This Chef Challenge is another way to engage our youth in a fun, friendly competition with local area chefs who can help create appealing recipes that will be incorporated...

Industry News & Opinion

After being sued by the Services Employees International Union over its decision to change vendors from Sodexo to Morrison, the foodservice arm at Mayo Clinic continues to face backlash from staff.

Foodservice employees at the Rochester, Minn., hospital last week handed over a petition 1,200 signatures deep asking that they remain with their current employer, Fox 9 reports .

While a Mayo Clinic spokesperson said that staff will be given similar positions and pay rates under Morrison, SEIU Healthcare Minnesota—the union representing much of the hospital’s foodservice staff—...

FSD Resources