SNA Press Releases

SNA Recognizes Three Professionals for Accomplishments in School Nutrition

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Contact: Erik Peterson
703-739-3900 ext. 124

SNA Recognizes Three Professionals for Accomplishments in School Nutrition

BALTIMORE, Md., July 18, 2005 – The School Nutrition Association (formerly American School Food Service Association) recognized three of its own today at the 59th Annual National Conference, in Baltimore, Maryland. In addition to state award winners, three SNA members received national recognition on Sunday, July 17, 2005, for their superior accomplishments in the school nutrition arena.

Outstanding School Foodservice Director of the Year was awarded to Demetrious Giovas, Student Nutrition Director for Gadsden Independent Schools in Anthony, New Mex.  An SNA member for over 12 years, Giovas oversees the school nutrition program in this rural district of 20 schools.

With over 13,898 students enrolled, 94% of the students eat school meals daily. He utilizes innovative programs that promote healthy eating habits among students, such as a farm to school initiative, breakfast in the classroom, fresh fruit and vegetable snack program, classroom based nutrition education and a Five-A-Day program. In addition to his emphasis on nutritious meals, Giovas’s program is well-regarded among students and the community and consistently is managed well financially.

Louis Sublette Award of Excellence went to Esther Huffman, foodservice manager at Searcy McRae Elementary in Searcy School District, Ar. Huffman was recognized for increasing school breakfast participation by 35% in a severe need school with 51% of students qualifying for free or reduced meals. Through a poster contest, classroom presentations and a “February Breakfast Bash” special event she introduced many students and parents to the most important meal of the day.  

Heart of the Program was awarded to Sharon Sheffield, food assistant at Julia P. Bryant Elementary School in Bulloch County School District. Sheffield was recognized for going well beyond the call of duty. In addition to the special attention she pays the student, she has taken a leadership role in preparing for special events and presentations at the school. Her creativity and enthusiasm is matching by her willingness to go the extra effort with regard to training and work duties.

The SNA Annual National Conference, July 17 – 20, 2005, features over 5,000 child nutrition and school foodservice industry professionals participating in over 100 workshops, the school nutrition industry’s largest exhibit hall and guest speakers including former Oriole Cal Ripken, Jr.

The School Nutrition Association (SNA),, is a national, non-profit professional organization representing more than 55,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. The Association and its members are dedicated to feeding children safe and nutritious meals. Founded in 1946, SNA is the only association devoted exclusively to protecting and enhancing children’s health and well being through school meals and sound nutrition education.

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