Kelly Ornberg, R.D.

Kelly Ornberg's ability to balance time between two hospitals has made her a success at St. Charles Health System.

Why Selected?

According to Executive Chef Thom Pastor, Kelly has made an impact on foodservice by:

•Balancing the needs of culinary operations at two hospitals 30 minutes away from each other
•Communicating well with her on-site managers and supporting their authority to manage in her absence
•Continuing to do patient diet consults even though she must commute between two hospitals
 

Details

Nutrition Services Manager, St. Charles Health System, Redmond, OR
Age: 29
Education: B.S. in nutrition and food management from Oregon State University
Years at organization: 2

Get to know

Q. What has been your proudest accomplishment?

The floor at one of my hospitals was old and slick, and it was bound to be a safety issue. It was decided that the best plan would be to redo the entire floor at one time, meaning we would not have a kitchen. After many attempts I found a mobile kitchen that was used for forest fires. We had to set up a modified patient menu to accommodate the truck, educate all the hospital staff, move everything out of the kitchen, set up new food storage rooms and still deliver room service meals. It was an incredibly challenging couple of weeks, but my crew really pulled together and the impact on patients was minimal.
 

Q. What would you say you excel at over more seasoned colleagues?

I embrace change as a chance to make improvements to the current process. 

Q. What's the best career advice you've been given?

Give yourself and others the permission to make mistakes.
 

Q. What's been the biggest challenge you've had to overcome?

Managing my time between two hospitals and making sure that I am able to provide enough support to my employees at both locations.
 

Q. What's been your most rewarding moment?

When my team and I were able to switch to room service with very few glitches. We put a lot of thought and training into our room service program, so it felt good to see it succeed. But the biggest reward came when patient satisfaction scores increased.
 

Q. What would you like to accomplish in your career in the next two years?

I would like to create nutrition labels for all of the food we serve. I would also like to partner with our wellness program to make it easy to identify healthy choices. 

Q. What's been your funniest on-the-job disaster?

I teach healthy cooking classes in the community and often try to prepare too many recipes for the participants. In the beginning I would completely forget to bring an essential ingredient to the off-site kitchen or would have it but leave it out of the dish. One group was very polite and said that they thought the recipe was pretty good. It didn’t occur to me until afterward that it was missing a key ingredient and lacked flavor.
 

Q. What can you look back at now and laugh at?

When the septic tank company came during the middle of lunch rush to empty our gray water tank in the mobile kitchen. People were not too pleased with the smell.
 

Under 30

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

Noncommercial foodservice operations and other employers would be spared from costly new overtime pay regulations if 21 states succeed in the legal challenge they jointly filed yesterday.

The lawsuit asks the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas to set aside the rules, which are scheduled to take effect on Dec. 1.

If the court rejects the request, restaurants and other businesses will be required after that date to pay overtime to any salaried employee who works more than 40 hours in a week and earns less than $47,476 on an annual basis.

The...

Industry News & Opinion

The new unpaid-balance policy at Canon-McMillan School District in Pittsburgh is making waves after a former cafeteria worker sounded off about the practice on social media.

Stacy Koltiska said she quit her job with the district after being forced to take hot meals away from students who owed lunch money, CBS News reports .

Under a new policy that was implemented at Canon-McMillan this year, students whose lunch debt exceeds $25 are not allowed to receive a hot lunch. Children in grades K-6 are given a sandwich in its place, and older students receive no lunch. A recent...

Industry News & Opinion

Due to low participation in its lunch program, Talawanda School District in Oxford, Ohio, is raising the price of school meals this year, Patch.com reports .

The cost of school lunches will see a 30-cent increase, half of which is being enacted to cover the district’s budget. The other half is being required by the government to cover the cost of free and reduced-price lunches provided to low-income families. Prior to this year, the district had not raised prices since 2009.

The district’s cafeterias have experienced a decline in student participation since implementing the...

Industry News & Opinion

Six Philadelphia hospitals were honored by the city’s department of public health for healthy food initiatives introduced as part of the local Good Food, Healthy Hospitals program, bizjournals.com reports .

The hospitals each debuted healthy measures to their dining services, such as lowering the cost of water bottles and seltzers, and offering dishes that incorporate local produce. One hospital was also honored for operating its own organic farm.

The facilities that were honored were:

Einstein Medical Center Philadelphia Cancer Treatment Centers of America’s Eastern...

FSD Resources