ANC Wraps Up with Author Jarrett J. Kroscozka, Performance by Darius Rucker

2013-07-18

July 18, 2013 – The final day of SNA’s Annual National Conference 2013 began with powerful Closing General Session, during which the 2013-2014 SNA Board of Directors – including new President Leah Schmidt – were installed and keynote speaker Jarrett J. Kroscozka presented a fascinating look at the world of School Lunch Superheroes.

For the final time, 2012-2013 SNA President Sandra Ford addressed the Association’s membership, bringing full circle her message of transforming school nutrition. As CEO Patricia Montague remarked, “You’ll always be Optimus Prime in our book.”

Schmidt then took to the stage, announcing her presidency’s theme, “Positive Partnerships for Healthy Results.” “We have a lot to do this year at SNA,” she said. “But I am so lucky to be working with a capable board.” She concluded by drawing the name of the ANC grand-prize winner, who receives an all-expenses-paid trip to ANC 2014 in Boston – Robin Smith, who happens to be Schmidt’s assistant in the Hickman Mills School District in Missouri. “It wasn’t fixed!” Schmidt exclaimed.

For the final portion of the session, SNA welcomed Kroscozka, author of the Lunch Lady graphic novel series. He told the fascinating story of how his crime-fighting lunch lady came to existence – a process that took eight years from inception to publication, and began with a trip back to his own elementary school in Worcester, Mass., and a reconnection with his childhood lunch lady, on whom the story is based.

 

ANC13 Jarrett.jpg

 

“There’s nothing more loving than feeding someone,” Kroscozka said. He announced that just that morning, on the day of the General Session, he had submitted the final pages of his 10th and final – for a while! – Lunch Lady book, “Lunch Lady and the Schoolwide Scuffle.”

The session concluded with four surprise guests, the women who appeared on The Food Network’s reality cooking competition, “Chopped.” The theme of school lunch superheroes continued – “For me, it was an honor and privilege [to represent the profession],” said Shannon Solomon, one of the contestants. “We’re all heroes, every single day.”

 

ANC13 Chopped.jpg

 

The Annual National Conference in Kansas City, Mo., concluded Wednesday evening with a rousing performance from country singer Darius Rucker, who serenaded the crowd with such hits as "Wagon Wheel" and "Hold My Hand," a beloved hit from his Hootie and the Blowfish days. Today, some 6,000 members and exhibitors will begin their journey home across the country, and begin eagerly preparing for ANC 2014 in Boston, Mass.

 


 

The ANC conversation doesn’t have to end just because the conference is over! You can keep it going on our social media sites—comment on our posts, share your thoughts about the conference and post pictures. Connect with SNA on Facebook, follow @SchoolLunch on Twitter and view candids of your favorite conference moments on Flickr, www.flickr.com/schoolnutrition.

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