Search

SNA Press Releases

Barbara Belmont Receives National Honor

(110) Permanent link

Barbara Belmont Receives National Honor

AssociationTrends publisher Jill M. Cornish presents Barbara Belmont, CAE with her award.ALEXANDRIA, Va., (November 30, 2002) – Barbara S. Belmont, CAE, Executive Director of the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA) and Child Nutrition Foundation, has been named the Association Trends 2002 Association Executive of the Year.

Belmont, is the 24th executive and only the 3rd woman to receive the honor, which recognizes excellence and leadership among executives in the national association community.  She was honored at the annual Association Trends Awards Program, at the Capital Hilton in Washington.

“I couldn’t be more pleased that Barbara is this year’s executive of the year,” Trends publisher Jill M. Cornish, said. “She encompasses everything excellent about the association profession, and she’s come this far while successfully facing the challenge of single motherhood. What an incredible woman!”  

Belmont has headed the ASFSA since 1993. The association, with over 55,000 members, was founded in 1946.  “Serving an association with a mission that you feel is important is one of the most satisfying aspects of being an association executive. The American School Food Service Association is there to see that all children have access to healthy meals and that no child goes hungry.” Belmont said.

Belmont began her association career with the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), starting as an associate editor in publications. She was then promoted to promotion coordinator for all the special interest councils. This was followed by being selected as the Executive Director for the Executive Officers Council consisting of more than 600 state and local home builder assn execs. While at NAHB, Belmont served as a staff VP of marketing, association services, membership and special industry councils. She also was senior marketing VP for Smart House, an NAHB for-profit subsidiary. Before entering the profession of association management, she was a history and civics teacher in St. Louis.

“I found that staying the course paid off,” she said. “I worked for NAHB from 1978 for over 14 years and there were days of anger, frustration, stress and fairness issues, but I had a wonderful mentor who made me believe that people do recognize good work and eventually the right things happen.”

She built her career while raising her two children under the strains of single parenthood. Today daughter Erin Ranee McCahill works for BBC Television in London, and daughter Jennifer Lauren Soloway is a financial analyst for Comark in Chicago. She also is completing her MBA.  “It is possible to build a successful association career while being a single parent. I didn’t say easy, but possible. My daughters were 8 and 7 when I went to work for the National Association of Home Builders,” Belmont said.

In her spare time, Belmont serves as secretary-treasurer of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) and is a director on the Friends of the World Food Programme executive board. She has chaired and served on numerous committees for both ASAE and the Greater Washington Society of Association Executives (GWSAE).  Belmont was a recipient of the GWSAE Award of Excellence in Education, the ASAE Innovative Programs education award and 2 ASAE Gold Circle Awards.

She earned a BA in Social Science and an MA in American History from the University of Colorado. She has been a certified association executive since 1986.

See Related Links to visit the Association Trends Web site.

Going Global Wins Prestigious Award

(110) Permanent link

Going Global Wins Prestigious Award

ALEXANDRIA, Va., (January 9, 2002) – ASFSA has been honored with an Award of Excellence in the first round of judging in the 2002 Associations Advance America (AAA) Awards program, sponsored by the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE).

The award program, in its 12th year, recognizes associations and industry partners that advance American society with innovative programs in education, skills training, standard setting, business and social innovation, knowledge creation, citizenship and community service.

Selected by a panel of peers, Award of Excellence winners are automatically entered into consideration for the Summit Award, ASAE’s highest association honor. All AAA Award winners will be honored during ASAE’s Annual Meeting and Exposition in Denver this August.

Going Global was developed by ASFSA staff in partnership with the World Food Programme and the Child Nutrition Foundation. The project objectives are to increase American children’s awareness of global hunger and their involvement as hunger activists. The program also aims to establish a model for the delivery of nutrition education to schoolchildren. The 128-page Going Global Activity Guide is currently being distributed nationwide.

Other programs honored with the 2002 AAA Award of Excellence are: 

  • American Medical Association Medical Student Section

  • Appalachian Christian Village at Pine Oaks

  • California Thoracic Society

  • Federation of State Medical Boards of the United States

  • Georgia Poultry Federation

  • Houston Association of Realtors

  • International Bottled Water Association

  • National Association of Realtors

  • National Association of State Treasurers and College Savings Plan Network

  • National Electrical Contractors Association

  • New Jersey Broadcasters Association

  • New Jersey State Bar Association

  • Women’s International Bowling Congress

Please see Related Links for more information on Going Global, the Activity Guide and the other honors won by this program.

Foundation Name Change Focuses on Child Nutrition

(110) Permanent link

Foundation Name Change
Focuses on Child Nutrition

Child Nutrition Foundation LogoALEXANDRIA, Va., (December 13, 2001) – The School Food Service Foundation, sister organization to the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA), has changed its name to the Child Nutrition Foundation.  

The change was a natural transition since the focus of the Association as a whole and its fundraising and development has always been on the well-being and nutrition of America’s children.

ASFSA members’ commitment to child nutrition and the contributions they have made throughout their careers inspired the Foundation Board to visibly position “child nutrition” at the forefront of what the Foundation represents. The Board unanimously voted to change the name at its October meeting. 

“The focus word in our new name is ‘child.’ This can only enhance the Foundation’s position each and every time we say our name. It is certainly consistent with our mission,” said Marilyn Hurt, Foundation president. 

The Foundation provides resources that enable ASFSA to achieve its vision that healthful meals and nutrition education are available to all children. Many of the Foundation’s programs include child nutrition research, public education about school foodservice and the professional development of ASFSA members and school foodservice professionals.

Much of the foodservice industry has also changed to using “child nutrition” for many of its school foodservice programs, so the name change opens up a better connection with them, as well as with the Association’s allied organizations.  

For more information on the Foundation and its programs please see Related Links.  In January, a new Child Nutrition Foundation section of this Web site will debut. Please be patient during the transition. 

The Foundation, established in 1964, is a non-profit corporation dedicated exclusively to child nutrition research, public education and professional development of school foodservice professionals.

ASFSA Responds to Unfair Criticism of School Lunches

(110) Permanent link

ASFSA Responds to Unfair
Criticism of School Lunches

ALEXANDRIA, Va., (October 24, 2001) – In a recent article distributed by Tribune Media Services, writer Jacquelyn Mitchard blames school lunches for the current childhood obesity epidemic. She says that “the school cafeteria is a weapon that will strike children in the heart decades from now” and claims that “children who are hooked on salt and fat-laden school lunches now will carry risk factors into adulthood.”

American School Foodservice Association (ASFSA) President, Marcia Smith, Foodservice Director of Polk County Schools in Florida responds, “All National School Lunch Program meals must meet the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which recommend that no more than 30 percent of an individual’s calories come from fat, and less than 10 percent from saturated fat. School lunches must also provide one-third of the Recommended Dietary Allowances of protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, iron, calcium and calories. Foodservice staff work very hard to make sure that the meals they serve to our nation’s children are nutritious, tasty and reasonably priced.”

Mitchard suggests in her article that parents should pack nutritious lunches including, “ants on a log, yogurt, turkey sandwiches and fat-free dressings.” In fact, many schools offer those exact items to their students. Perhaps the critics of today’s school lunches haven’t visited a cafeteria recently. Salad bars, fresh fruit and vegetables and low-fat milk are widely available.

Current research supports the fact that school lunches are often more nutritious than those packed at home. According to research conducted by Alice Jo Rainville of Eastern Michigan University and published in the Journal of Child Nutrition and Management, meals eaten at school are more nutritious than those brought from home. Rainville evaluated 570 lunches, both prepared by schools and brought from home. She found that the lunches prepared in school had significantly fewer calories from fat than lunches brought from home. In addition, school lunches had more protein, fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Vitamin B-6, B-12, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, calcium, iron and zinc. The lunches brought from home had more carbohydrates, fat and sugar.

While the issue of childhood obesity is a serious one, physical activity is an important part of the equation. Activity is essential for children, however physical education time is being cut in many schools and children spend numerous inactive hours in front of the television or computer screen.

Smith says, “Rather than point fingers, I would like to see everyone concerned with child nutrition working together to solve the very real issues of child health. ASFSA and its members are committed to playing an important role in this arena.”

ASFSA.ORG to Host Chat on Biotechnology

(110) Permanent link

ASFSA.ORG to Host
Chat on Biotechnology

ALEXANDRIA, Va., October 23, 2001 – Robert Hahn, associate at Olsson, Frank, & Weeda, will preside over the American School Food Service Association's online chat on the topic of biotechnology on Thursday, October 25 at 4pm EDT at http://www.asfsa.org. Hahn will respond to questions and concerns about biotechnology, specifically addressing the role of genetically modified foods in school feeding programs.

Robert A. Hahn is an associate at Olsson, Frank and Weeda, P.C. He has previously worked as Director of Legal Affairs at Public Voice for Food and Health Policy (now merged with the Consumer Federation of America), Vice President & Counsel at Manufacturers Hanover Trust Company (now Chase Manhattan Bank), and as an associate in the Guangzhou, China office of Lewis, D'Amato, Brisbois, Bisgaard, Buxbaum & Choy.  Mr. Hahn has collaborated on several articles and papers including the The Food Institute’s Primer on Food Biotechnology.

Food biotechnology has become the subject of much attention and debate recently.  Supporters point to the role genetically modified foods can play in meeting the food needs of the expanding world population.  On the other hand, detractors claim modified crops could harm the environment and also create new food safety concerns. Hahn will discuss these arguments as well as talk about the impact such foods can have in school feeding programs.

All ASFSA members and the general public are invited to participate in the chat. To participate, log on to the World Wide Web and go to ASFSA’s Web site, Your Child Nutrition eSource at http://www.asfsa.org, on the day of the chat. There will be instructions on the ASFSA home page for connecting to the chat. A transcript of the chat will be available through the Web site within three days, as well.

Please note that chat participants now can receive one Continuing Education Unit (CEU) towards ASFSA Certification by attending the chat and completing a short quiz afterwards. More information can be found on this new professional development opportunity at ASFSA’s Web site in the Online Education Center.

ASFSA also has scheduled a chat for November 29, 2001, at 4 PM, EDT, on the ASFSA Certification and Credentialing programs. ASFSA will host chats every fourth Thursday of the month at 4 PM, eastern time. In September, ASFSA.ORG hosted a chat on “Implementing HACCP.” The transcript for this chat is now available.

ASFSA is a national, non-profit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Founded in 1946, ASFSA is the only association devoted exclusively to protecting and enhancing children’s health and well-being through school meals and sound nutrition education. 

See Related Links for more information on biotechnology or for more information on past and future online chats.

NSLW 2001: School Lunch Promotes the Three R’s

(110) Permanent link

NSLW 2001: School Lunch
Promotes the Three R’s

National School Lunch WeekALEXANDRIA, Va., (October 4, 2001) – Reading, writing and arithmetic. Kids who eat nutritious meals not only perform better in these subjects, but in other aspects of their lives as well. That’s why the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) has been providing healthy lunches to students for more than 55 years.

This year the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA) and the United States Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service are pleased to be partners in the promotion of National School Lunch Week (NSLW), October 15-19. The theme for this year’s celebration is “School Lunch: By the Book” which emphasizes the relationship between nutritious school lunches and a child’s readiness to learn in the classroom.

Marcia Smith, president of ASFSA points out, “The National School Lunch Program serves nearly 28 million children each day. For many, this lunch is their most nutritious meal of the day.” The week of October 15 through 19 is a time to recognize the important contribution of the school lunch program to the health and well-being of our children.

In keeping with this year’s theme, school foodservice professionals will plan fun filled menus and plan special events, many focusing on the By the Book theme. Students visiting cafeterias may see unique decorations and even foodservice staff dressed in keeping with the theme.

Throughout the year all meals served in the National School Lunch Program are regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture and are in accordance with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans which recommends that no more than 30 percent of an individual’s calories come from fat, and less than 10 percent from saturated fat. Regulations also establish a standard for school lunches to provide one third of the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA’s) of protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, iron, calcium and calories. Marcia Smith comments, “Healthy school lunches meet the national dietary guidelines and promote healthy bodies and minds.”

NSLW was established in 1963 by a proclamation from President John F. Kennedy. It is designed to help raise awareness of and garner support for the role that school foodservice and nutrition programs play in the lives of America’s children. The American School Food Service Association helps celebrate the event each year with a theme and promotional materials. For more information on National School Lunch Week, see Related Links.

School Food Safety Committee Members Announced

(110) Permanent link

School Food Safety
Committee Members Announced

ALEXANDRIA, Va., (September 26, 2001) – The School Food Service Foundation, sister organization of the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA), announced the formation of its School Food Safety Committee today, along with the names of 12 committee members. The Committee was formed to oversee the Foundation’s participation in a coalition of national organizations to build the capacity of schools to prevent foodborne illness through coordinated school health programs.

Members of the School Food Safety Committee are charged with strengthening the capacity of school foodservice professionals to prevent and/or better manage school-based foodborne illness outbreaks, along with overseeing the implementation of a model, coordinated school food safety program. The school food safety initiative is a result of a grant awarded last month by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that funds a one-year project to provide quality food safety programming for school foodservice operations. 

Serving on the School Food Safety Committee will be

  • Chuck Ainsworth, Division Manager, SFSPac Food Service Sanitation

  • Julie Nelson MSPH, Program Manager, National Association of County and City Health Officials

  • Peggy Eller, Wisconsin School Food Service Association

  • Susan Ehrhart, Program Specialist, Polk County (FL) Public Schools

  • Sandy Ford, School Foodservice Director, Blue Valley Unified (KS) School District

  • Brenda Greene, Director of School Health Programs, National School Boards Association

  • Jane Logan, PhD, Executive Director, National Food Service Management Institute

  • Mark McGrath, Ed.D., Food Service Management Specialist, School and Community Nutrition Program for the State of Georgia

  • Suzanne Rigby, Branch Chief, Food Distribution Division, United States Department of Agriculture

  • Michelle Rosales, Food and Nutrition Service, United States Department of Agriculture

  • Jeannie Sneed, PhD, RD, SFNS, Hotel, Restaurant, and Institution Management, Iowa State University

Serving as a liaison to the committee will be Glenda Lewis MSPH, Consumer Safety Officer, Food and Drug Administration/Retail Food and Interstate Travel Team.  

The School Food Service Foundation, established in 1964, is a non-profit corporation dedicated exclusively to child nutrition research, public education and professional development of school foodservice professionals.

ASFSA.ORG to Host Chat on Implementing HACCP

(110) Permanent link

ASFSA.ORG to Host Chat
on Implementing HACCP

ALEXANDRIA, Va.,  September 25, 2001 – Allen Meyers, CEC, will discuss the implementation of the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) system in the school setting during the American School Food Service Association’s (ASFSA) September online chat, scheduled for Thursday, September 27, from 4:00 to 5:00pm, EDT. The chat is being held in honor of National Food Safety Education Month.

Meyers, founder of Certified Foodservice Consulting, is a certified food safety instructor and has several years of experience implementing HACCP and training school foodservice professionals.  He has designed his own Food Protection Management Program as well as a USDA-approved recipe program.  

The Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) system is a food safety system designed to monitor food preparation activities, identify where errors in handling can happen, and then implement standards and procedures to eliminate those errors. A well-designed HACCP system encompasses the entire foodservice operation by following the path of potentially hazardous foods through the operation. By focusing on the factors that are critical to food safety, operators can effectively allocate time and resources to concentrate on the critical areas.

The Pillsbury Company developed the HACCP system in 1971 for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The HACCP system proved so valuable, successful and straightforward in food processing that modified HACCP systems are now widely accepted and increasingly used in the foodservice industry.

All ASFSA members and the general public are invited to participate in the chat. To participate, log on to the World Wide Web and go to ASFSA’s Web site, Your Child Nutrition eSource at http://www.asfsa.org, on the day of the chat. There will be instructions on the ASFSA home page for connecting to the chat. A transcript of the chat will be available through the Web site within three days, as well.

Please note that chat participants now can receive one Continuing Education Unit (CEU) towards ASFSA Certification by attending the chat and completing a short quiz afterwards. More information can be found on this new professional development opportunity at ASFSA’s Web site in the Online Education Center.

ASFSA also has scheduled a chat for October 25, 2001, at 4 PM, EDT, on biotechnology. ASFSA will host chats every fourth Thursday of the month at 4 PM, EST. In August, ASFSA.ORG hosted a chat on “Chapter Successes.” The transcript for this chat is now available.

ASFSA is a national, non-profit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Founded in 1946, ASFSA is the only association devoted exclusively to protecting and enhancing children’s health and well-being through school meals and sound nutrition education.

For more information on National Food Safety Education Month and past or upcoming chats, please see Related Links.

ASFSA Statement on Nutrition and Policy Gap Analysis

(110) Permanent link

ASFSA Statement on Nutrition
and Policy Gap Analysis

WASHINGTON, D.C., (September 19, 2001) – The American School Food Service Association shares the belief of others in the nutrition community that the gap between what we know about diet and nutrition and what people actually eat is a significant public policy issue. While the Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends 7-10 servings of fruits and vegetables per day, actual consumptions is woefully short of that target.  We believe that it is appropriate for the government to address this problem, particularly the environment in schools as it impacts nutrition, activity and health.

In the eight years between the first School Nutrition Dietary Assessment (SNDA) in 1993 and the second study released this year by the United States Department of Agriculture, schools have made significant progress in improving school meals.  According to SNDA II (2001), “roughly two-thirds of all NSLP menus offered more than the two fruit and/or vegetable choices required under the food-based menu planning systems.  More than one-quarter of all menus included five or more fruit and/or vegetable choices.”

Equally interesting is the change in school meals related to fat and saturated fat..  Whereas in 1991-92 only 34% of all elementary schools participating in the National School Lunch Program even offered meals which meet the dietary guidelines for fat and saturated fat, 82% did in the 1998-99 study period.  In secondary schools the change was from 71% to 91%.  The problem is the gap between what is being offered and what is being consumed.  Of the meals actually served to students (what students select from what is offered), only 19% of all schools met these dietary guidelines.

The message in these numbers is that school cafeterias are making a significant effort to improve what is being offered to children.  But we as a society are not being effective in promoting that message with enough urgency as to change children’s behaviors.  The barrage of media messages promoting less healthy alternatives is overwhelming our efforts to promote healthier eating including increased consumption of fruits and vegetables.

On the other hand, the situation in schools outside of the cafeteria is dismal.  The growth of food sales on campuses, largely of less nutritious foods, other than food served as part of the National School Lunch Program, is contributing to the epidemic of obesity in children today.  A front page story in the New York Times on Sunday, September 9, discussed the growing conflict between nutrition policy and economic reality for schools.

ASFSA believes that the gap between what is the consensus on good nutrition and what is reality for too many of America’s children is a legitimate public policy question. The long-term economic impact of diet related diseases which will afflict children who are obese is enormous, far surpassing the cost of addressing these problems today. 

For us there are two policy areas that need to be addressed today.  First is the need to develop a cohesive national program of education and promotion specifically targeted at children to help them learn to make better choices for a lifetime of good health. Such a program should include school-based and community-based programs. Second is the need to expand the federal government’s authority to establish guidelines on what foods can be sold on school campuses during the school day. Considering the current investment in school meal programs and future healthcare costs from obesity related diseases, this is an appropriate discussion for policy makers to have.

ASFSA.ORG to Host Human Resources Online Chat

(110) Permanent link

ASFSA.ORG to Host
Human Resources Online Chat

ALEXANDRIA, Va.,  May 21, 2001 – Karen S. Usher will discuss strategies for handling difficult employees during the American School Food Service Association’s (ASFSA) May online chat, scheduled for Thursday, May 24, from 4:00 to 5:00pm, EDT. Usher, president of The Personnel Office, Inc. and The Fasad Group, Inc., will respond to questions and concerns from chat participants as well as analyze situations that might arise in the workplace.

The best hiring policies, the best benefits, the best training programs – employers try everything to avoid having difficult employees on staff, but inevitably all managers will have to deal with a problem employee at some point. What makes an employee a “bad” employee, and how do you keep them from affecting the efficiency and morale of your staff? Usher will share her expertise on these topics during ASFSA’s online chat.

Founder of The Personnel Office, Inc., Usher has enjoyed a broad career in human resources management. Beginning as a human resources consultant in 1981, she has conducted assignments in a wide variety of industries and with non-profit organizations of all sizes. Prior to establishing The Personnel Office in 1994, Ms. Usher founded The Fasad Group, Inc., a broad-based human resources strategic planning consultancy specializing in the development of unique human resource programs for smaller and medium-sized businesses. Clients of The Personnel Office and The Fasad Group include MCI Telecommunications Group, Nestlé Foods Corporation, United Press International and Sara Lee Corporation.

All ASFSA members and the general public are invited to participate in the chat. To participate, log on to the World Wide Web and go to ASFSA’s home page at http://www.asfsa.org, Your Child Nutrition eSource, on the day of the chat. There will be instructions on the ASFSA home page for connecting to the chat. A transcript of the chat will be available through the Web site within three days, as well.

Please note that chat participants now can receive one Continuing Education Unit (CEU) towards ASFSA Certification by attending the chat and completing a short quiz afterwards. More information can be found on this new professional development opportunity at ASFSA’s Web site at http://www.asfsa.org.

ASFSA also has scheduled a chat for June 28, 2001, at 4pm, EDT, on competitive foods. ASFSA will host chats every fourth Thursday of the month at 4pm, EST. In April, ASFSA.ORG hosted a chat on universal feeding, specifically Provisions 2 & 3. The transcript for this chat is now available at http://www.asfsa.org.

For more information on past and upcoming chats, please see Related Links.


Bookmark and Share