Foodservice Equipment Reports
E&S Industry Event & Award Coverage

The FER Industry Excellence Awards

Foodservice Equipment Reports’ Industry Excellence Awards celebration, held Feb. 20 at the Anaheim Marriott Hotel during The NAFEM Show, honored 17 remarkable organizations and individuals with the magazine’s Management Excellence Awards, Industry Service Awards and Young Lion Awards. Our staff welcomed some 400 friends, colleagues, past winners and industry icons who gathered to celebrate and toast the winners during a cocktail party/dinner buffet and formal presentation ceremony.

Hosted by FER Publisher Robin Ashton and Editor-in-Chief Beth Lorenzini, the recipients accepted their awards with heartfelt sentiment in eloquent—and short—speeches; the presentation of awards lasted just an hour and 20 minutes, after which the party and networking continued. 

One honoree after another used his or her time to share the spotlight and recognition with colleagues, industry peers, mentors and partners, both personal and professional. Phil Atkinson of the Hennepin County (Minn.) Sheriff’s Office said he was thrilled to be able to convey to the company gathered the importance of the correctional foodservice industry as it serves millions of meals each day. Miami Dade County Public Schools’ Tom Holmberg said, “We just aren’t used to being recognized this way.” Dave Biederman of Smashburger thanked his equipment supplier partners by name. Joe Pierce talked about navigating big changes at the Commercial Food Equipment Service Association and thanked the team that helped him every step of the way. And each and every recipient made sure we knew that they do what they do with the support of their colleagues and families. The sentiment was not lost on those gathered. One guest told us, “You are awarding some of nicest people in this industry.” We agree.

What we appreciate most about our awards program is the opportunity to bring together members from every channel of the industry, from equipment and supply manufacturers to manufacturers’ reps to service agents, dealers, consultants and operators from both commercial and noncommercial foodservices, who would never really have much of an opportunity to meet otherwise. We’re grateful to host an event where such connections are made. 

The FER Industry Excellence Awards will be presented again in 2017 during The NAFEM Show in Orlando, Fla. Until then, enjoy our photo gallery of this year’s event.


Ali Group 

Henny Penny
ITW Food Equipment Group
The Vollrath Co.

Advance Tabco
Eagle Group
Franke Foodservice Systems
Heritage Parts
Standex Foodservice Group
Structural Concepts 

Commercial Food Equipment Service Association
Manufacturers’ Agents Association for the Foodservice Industry

2015 Management Excellence Awards

Operator (>250 units)
Chase Green, Dustin Doyal, Dan Reep, Scott Herdic, Ryan Swinford, Mike Sevener, Marty Hynson, Jeremy Negron, Mike Walpole

Operator (<250 units)
Cha Nye Farley, David Biederman, Laura Spoor 

Noncommercial Operator
Miami-Dade County Public Schools
Thomas Holmberg, Patty Prida, Alice Margolis, Wanda Pedraza, Olga Botero, Audra Wright, Susan Rothstein 

Dealer (>$40 million sales)
Hockenbergs Food Service Equipment & Supply
Tom Schrack Sr., Tom Schrack Jr., Tim Schrack, Mary Parr, Paul Parr 

Dealer (<$40 million sales)
Rapids Wholesale Equipment Co.
Joe Schmitt, Geri Schmitt, Joe Dodds, Diane Dodds, Eric Schmitt, Matt Faber, Jim Ottmer, Jeff Menster, Miki Blair, Deb Nicholas 

Reitano Design Group
Scott Reitano, Jim Kessenich, Bronson Lipinski, Julie Sullivan, Katie Rogers 

2015 Young Lion Awards

Mason Greene
Hotel & Restaurant Supply 

Manufacturers’ Rep
Kevin Eaton
Eaton Marketing & Associates Inc.

A.J. Barker, Sr. Assoc. FCSI
Think Tank Hospitality Group Inc.

Service Agent
Mike Via
Refrigerated Specialist Inc. 

Commercial Operator
Catherine Helwig McGill
Cracker Barrel Old Country Store 

Noncommercial Operator
Zia Ahmed
University Dining Services, The Ohio State University 

2015 Industry Service Awards 

Paul Gustafson
Ace Mart Restaurant Supply 

Manufacturers’ Rep
Michael Turetzky
Chernoff Sales Inc. 

James Camacho, FCSI, CSI
Camacho Associates Inc. 

Service Agent
Joe Pierce
Pierce Parts & Service 

Philip Atkinson
Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office

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