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Culinary Excellence on Display at Annual Meeting

Culinary Excellence on Display at Annual Meeting

Benchmark recently recognized excellence in dining services during its annual Dining Service Directors Meeting at Gordon Food Service in Taunton, Mass.

Wearing a chef jacket to match the room filled with dining service directors and chefs, Chairman and CEO Tom Grape emphasized the key role of culinary departments within Benchmark communities. Tom also discussed our new mission, vision and values, while Susie Germer, Director of Brand Strategy & Marketing, spoke about the Benchmark brand.

“We’re a place that connects you to what matters, and all our dining service associates create an environment that makes this possible,” Tom says.

Guy Hemond, Vice President of Culinary, Dining Experience & Facilities, congratulated the 18 communities that scored 100% in their Quality Rating System (QRS) audit:

Middlebrook Farm at Trumbull
Carriage Green at Milford
The Village at Willow Crossings
BSL at Plymouth Crossings
Wellington at Hershey’s Mill
River Ridge at Avon
Harbor Point at Centerville
Crescent Point at Niantic
The Atrium at Veronica Drive
BSL at Robbins Brook
Tatnuck Park at Worcester
BSL at Ridgefield Crossings
The Village at Brookfield Common
The Commons in Lincoln
BSL at Chelmsford Crossings
Greystone Farm at Salem
The Birches at Concord
BSL at Haverhill Crossings

“We’re proud to announce that we had six more communities than last year score 100%, which is very commendable,” Guy says.

The event also recognized winners in the Chinese New Year Challenge. Dining, programming and community management teams worked in partnership on Chinese New Year celebrations for our residents.

Home office associates judged submissions with consideration to five special categories:

Community Spirit Award, Harbor Point at Centerville
Community Spirit Award, The Village at Buckland Court
Best Theme Buffet, BSL at Plymouth Crossings
Best Plated Meal Presentation, BSL at Putnam Farm
Team & Resident Engagement Award, The Branches at North Attleboro

Grand Prize Winners for Best Theme Program

Memory Care, The Atrium at Faxon Woods
Traditional, The Village at Willow Crossing
CCRC, Edgehill

“This award means a lot to the team at Edgehill, especially Dining Services,” says Edgehill Executive Chef Anthony Napolitano. “It’s great to be recognized in a friendly competition among peers working together on a common goal.”

Harbor Point at Centerville Dining Services Director Steven Sprague says it was great to share the recognition with the community.

“The Chinese New Year Challenge award was truly a team effort between our culinary and activities teams, and department heads,” he says. “As a result, the residents loved our celebration.”

An overview of the dining program included remarks from Regional Directors of Dining Services Jim Hourihan and Mike Eckrote. Bob Moran, Senior Vice President of Operations, who talked about a changing industry as residents look for quality food options and flexible meal schedules.

“Dining is not what it used to be 15 years ago,” Bob says. “Benchmark now offers meals when residents want to eat – not just during a specific timeframe.”

In addition to the overview and awards, the meeting featured a Luncheon Ingredient Showcase by corporate chefs from Gordon, Nestle and Affinity Group Infusion, who cooked and served lunch to our Benchmark dining services team.

“The event was in a great venue to celebrate our special dining services departments in all our Benchmark communities,” Guy says.

Congratulations to all award winners for showing that we are Better Together when it comes to creating great dining experiences for our residents.

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