ANFP National Leadership Conference Earns High Marks From Attendees

July 8, 2014

ST. CHARLES, IL – “Change, Choice & Opportunity” was the theme for the Association of Nutrition & Foodservice Professionals’ recent National Leadership Conference (NLC), held June 21-24 at the Hyatt Regency Minneapolis. The event attracted more than 400 attendees for quality educational programming and first-rate networking. The seventh annual ANFP Leadership Institute preceded the NLC and drew nearly 50 attendees for three days of intense leadership training.

Highlights from the NLC included the opening session panel discussion on “Emerging Culture Change.” Discussion centered on the new Dining Practice Standards and the NFEF’s Emerging Dining Trends in Long-Term Care research. Nutrition & Foodservice Education Foundation Chair Elect Jeremy Manners, CDM, CFPP, FMP summarized the NFEF’s research data and best practices.

Carmen Bowman, MSH, ACC presented a session on “Changing Institutional Culture.” Her message – which resonated strongly with attendees -- was that resident-directed dining is critically important. She explained it can be done on a shoestring and can enhance compliance with regulatory requirements.

Brenda Richardson, MA, RDN, LD, CD delivered three programs on leading-edge topics. In “Real Food First” she explained that current Dining Practice Standards advocate presenting real food before dietary supplements to enhance resident satisfaction and improve health outcomes. Richardson also addressed “Healthcare Reform” and its impact on the food and nutrition services department. And finally, she provided an overview of HCAHPS (Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems) and why these service indicator ratings are important to healthcare organizations.

Chef demos were popular with conference attendees, who enjoyed live cooking demonstrations by Derrick Davenport, CEC, CEPC; Cary Neff, CEC; and Richard Hoelzel, CDM, CFPP, FMP. All shared personal and professional experiences that shaped who they are and what they cook, and the audience got to see first-hand their food preparation techniques.

A “Virtual Dementia Tour” was offered so NLC attendees could gain a greater understanding of what it feels like to have Alzheimer’s or dementia. Through special sensory tools, this high impact experience gave participants a window into their world.

Several other educational programs helped food and nutrition professionals prepare for on-the-job challenges and learn about the future of food service.

The half-day Expo featured 50 booths showcasing a wide variety of foodservice products and innovations. It lived up to its theme of “Cost-Effective Solutions in a Changing Environment.”

Networking opportunities were plentiful, and attendees enjoyed connecting informally with peers at the welcome reception, at sponsored meals, at the NFEF bowling outing, and at the NFEF Pay it Forward Fundraiser. This popular annual event – which featured a live culinary competition and silent auction -- raises funds and visibility for the Nutrition & Foodservice Education Foundation. An impressive $40,000 was raised at the Pay it Forward event and will go towards scholarships, research funding, and other Foundation education initiatives. ANFP and the NFEF appreciate the strong support of nearly two dozen event sponsors. Special thanks to our Platinum Sponsors: McKee Foods Corporation – Fieldstone Bakery and Sysco. Planning is already underway for ANFP’s 2015 national conference, slated for August 2-5 at the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress in Orlando, Fla.

For more information, contact ANFP Executive Vice President Marla Isaacs, CAE at (800) 323- 1908 or

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