Confessions of Roger Knysh

Roger Knysh, director of nutrition and food services department at Fairview Hospital in Great Barrington, Mass., would work with animals if he weren’t in foodservice but says snakes are his greatest fear.

Q. What is the best part of your job?

My staff.

Q. What is the worst part of your job?

Paperwork.

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

Increased customer satisfaction.

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

To cook alligator.

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

Working with animals.

Q. Which talent would you most like to have?

Play a musical instrument.

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

Save more, spend less.

Q. What is your greatest fear?

Snakes.

Q. Which living person do you most admire?

My mother because she always says and does the right thing without effort.

Q. What is your "guilty pleasure?"

Ice cream.

Q. What will people always find in your refrigerator?

Yogurt, salad and fruit.

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

TV dinners.

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

Fiddleheads, a fernlike plant in the Northeast.

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

Prepared convenience foods.

Q. Are you a morning or evening person?

Morning; my family all work the early shift and we have two dogs that make sure we’re up early.

Q. What are your words to live by?

There is no “I” in team.

More From FoodService Director

Menu Development
craft beer flight
A draw for happy hour...

Phan plans to serve beer and wine, and depending on liquor licensing, perhaps cocktails as well. “For faculty and staff on campus, it will be a really wonderful place to come to and have a glass of wine,” Wolch says. “Right now, we have The Faculty Club bar, which is a very historic spot, but this is going to be much more contemporary.”

And for morning coffee...

Phan’s plan for made-to-order coffee is bound to be a boon for both faculty and students. “We’ll have a brand-new espresso machine,” Phan says. Wolch adds, “Most of us in the Bay Area are, if not...

Ideas and Innovation
chicken herbs

We make and broadcast short YouTube videos on TV monitors to educate our customers about cooking techniques, like how to cut up a chicken or what herbs and spices go well together. The monitors also are used to display daily menus, nutritional and allergen information, upcoming foodservice events and local weather forecasts.

Managing Your Business
wurster west may 2016

At a nearly 150-year-old university, every stone column and classroom has treasured stories to tell. But with that history come the logistical challenges of operating in outdated spaces—especially for foodservice. Such is the case at University of California at Berkeley, where longtime cafe Ramona’s in Wurster Hall closed in March to make way for an updated, as-yet unnamed concept.

With little more than a steam table and coolers, Ramona’s was limited by its lack of ventilation. And, as a former classroom space, it never was intended to function for foodservice, says Jennifer Wolch...

Ideas and Innovation
leftovers containers

We use our Menu Forward idea to empower staff to develop menu items and keep leftovers in check. Product left at the end of service may be claimed by any station to become part of a new item within six weeks. I’m happy to see my star team fighting for their ideas and products; the benefit to food cost is spot-on, and my freezer has no mystery items lurking in the corner.

FSD Resources