Foodservice Equipment Reports

Honoring Excellence

We look forward to The NAFEM Show every two years for so many reasons—it is, after all, our premier foodservice equipment show. It’s where we get to see cutting-edge product introductions and catch up with industry friends and news. The experience is invaluable. Recently, the show has taken on even more meaning for us at Foodservice Equipment Reports because we are able to devote Friday night to our Industry Excellence Awards Gala. It’s our chance to recognize the people and organizations in this industry who exemplify excellence.

I wish everyone could listen in on the conference calls when our panels of judges discuss their nominees for the six Management Excellence awards. Integrity, dependability, expertise, professionalism, attitude: These are the qualities our judges—all leading, veteran E&S manufacturers—recognize and value in their customers. The judging is a really exciting process. 

We leave the choice of Young Lion and Industry Service Awards winners to our partner associations. Their boards (FCSI for consultants, MAFSI for manufacturers’ reps, FEDA for dealers and CFESA for service agents) are the best qualified to identify stars within their memberships. Then our staff, with input from industry friends, selects the commercial and noncommercial operator winners. It’s a tough exercise because we know a lot of exceptional people.

When all of the decisions are made, Publisher Robin Ashton and I get to deliver the good news to the honorees. It’s about the most fun you can have. Their responses are priceless—finding out your peers think so highly of you is humbling and thrilling all at the same time. 

For the full story on the “class” of 2015, just take a look at our October issue. We share with you the winners, judging procedures and criteria.

And then please accept this invitation to join us for the big bash where we celebrate and honor the 2015 award winners. FER’s Industry Excellence Awards Gala is Feb. 20, 2015, at the Anaheim Marriott, Anaheim, Calif., during The NAFEM Show. Sponsors, including Advance Tabco, Henny Penny, Heritage Foodservice Group, ITW FEG and Structural Concepts, are already committing. Go to or email Robin, Christine Palmer ( or me for event details and instructions for registering. We’d love to see you there.

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