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

University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn., has replaced a fajita bar in one of its dining halls with a superfoods bar, Tommie Media reports.

Aiming to provide more options for athletes and students with dietary restrictions, the new bar offers diners a choice of protein with a variety of toppings, such as beans, fruit, couscous and quinoa.

The superfoods bar has made a few appearances on campus since it was first tried for the school’s football players last summer.

“Word of mouth is getting out, and every day I get a few more people,” Ryan Carlson, a cook at the...

Sponsored Content
gluten free diet

From Stouffer’s.

A large part of menuing allergen-friendly cuisine is deciding which gluten-free items to serve.

In particular, college dining hall operators must decide whether to make gluten-free items in-house or to order gluten-free items from a manufacturer. Some factors to consider are: the size of the university, the demand for gluten-free options,and the ability to have separate gluten-free storage and workspaces in the university dining hall kitchen.

According to FoodService Director , 77% of college and university operators purchase their gluten-free...

Industry News & Opinion

Reading Hospital in West Reading, Pa., is using robots to help deliver patient meals, BCTV reports.

The eight robots, named TUGs, will be used to transport meals from the hospital’s nutrition services department to patient floors at Reading HealthPlex for Advanced Surgical & Patient Care.

Moving at three miles per hour, the robots will follow preprogrammed routes to the HealthPlex, where room ambassadors will remove room service carts from the TUGs and deliver them to patients. The TUGs will then return to nutrition services with dirty dishes for cleaning.

The...

Industry News & Opinion

Sodexo has partnered with fast casual Blaze Pizza to offer the chain’s signature pizzas, salads, beverages and desserts at select venues served by Sodexo, including colleges and universities.

Bill Lacey, senior vice president of marketing at Sodexo, said that Blaze’s growth in the fast-casual sector drove the partnership. Blaze opened its first unit in 2012 near the University of California at Irvine. Its pizzas are flash fired, cooking in under 180 seconds, according to the chain—a selling point for busy customers.

FSD Resources