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Delaware North Companies Chefs to Participate in First Lady’s ‘Chefs Move to Schools’ Campaign

 Master Chef Henin and five company chefs to be at White House Friday to launch program aimed at bringing healthy food to schools

BUFFALO, N.Y.  (June 3, 2010) Six Delaware North Companies chefs will head to the White House in Washington, D.C., this Friday to participate in the launch of First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Chefs Move to Schools” program.

The first lady and a select group of chefs from around the United States will attend a kickoff event on the south lawn of the White House Friday morning, a call to action to chefs to partner with schools to provide nutritional information and cooking advice to schools, educators, parents and children.

Delaware North chefs are active in their local communities and have established programs and outreach, including urban gardens, cooking demonstrations for school groups and volunteerism with organizations. As an example, the company’s urban garden developed in partnership with the Buffalo area Boys & Girls Club teaches children about food from farm to table.

“It is a great honor and a privilege to attend this important event,” said Henin. “We have had the pleasure of serving President Obama at Busch Stadium in St. Louis and the first family in Yellowstone National Park. Our focus on sustainability, farm-to-table cooking and a focus on nutrition and sports make this a natural fit for us.”

Delaware North Companies Corporate Chef Roland Henin, a rare certified master chef and highly regarded culinary expert and educator, will lead the company’s efforts in the initiative. Accompanying Henin to the White House are:

·        Kevin Doherty, a regional executive chef for Delaware North Companies Sportservice at TD Garden in Boston, a Delaware North Companies-owned facility and home of the Boston Celtics and Bruins;

·        Percy Whatley, executive chef for Delaware North Companies Parks & Resorts at The Ahwahnee, Yosemite National Park’s National Historic Landmark hotel;

·        James Major, a regional executive chef for Sportservice at Progressive Field, home of the Cleveland Indians;

·        Scott Green, executive chef for Delaware North Companies Gaming & Entertainment at Fairgrounds Gaming & Racing in Hamburg, N.Y.; and

·        Ambarish Lulay, executive chef for Sportservice at PETCO Park, home of the San Diego Padres.

Henin provides consultation and direction on culinary operations for Delaware North’s food service operations in dozens of locations, including hotels and resorts, sports and entertainment venues and airports.

He is also one of the principal members of the Delaware North Culinary and Hospitality Council, which seeks to establish and maintain within the company the highest culinary standards in the industry. Delaware North requires and funds training for its more than 100 chefs to be certified by the American Culinary Federation.

Delaware North’s culinary council will work with the White House "Chefs Move to Schools" program to find appropriate linkages for the company’s chefs with local schools across the country in the next several months.

Chefs Move to Schools is part of the first lady’s Let’s Move! campaign. The goal of Let’s Move! is to solve the epidemic of childhood obesity within a generation. The program, to be administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, will strive to pair chefs with interested schools in their communities, so together they can create healthy meals that meet the schools’ dietary guidelines and budgets while teaching young people about nutrition and making balanced and healthy choices.

The American Culinary Federation, the National Restaurant Association, the International Corporate Chefs Association, and Share Our Strength, a national organization devoted to combating childhood hunger, will work with chefs participating in the pilot launch this summer. Volunteers will begin working in schools in the fall. Delaware North is affiliated with the American Culinary Federation, the International Corporate Chefs Association and the National Restaurant Association.

“It is exciting to see our members, who comprise nearly 40 percent of all food service sales in the nation, come together in a effort that will help our future generations make healthier choices in our restaurants, said Kevin Ryan, executive director of the International Corporate Chefs Association. “Our vision is that the Chefs Move to Schools program will work to promote healthy food choices in homes across the nation just as seat belt campaigns have helped parents to buckle up.”