The non-profit Oregon School Nutrition Association has awarded Karin Nichols, nutrition manager with Sue Buel Elementary School in McMinnville, OR, the Manager of the Year Award. The award, considered the highest honor a school nutrition manager can earn, recognizes a cafeteria manager who has demonstrated dedication and ingenuity to improve his or her school meal program.
Karin Nichols has been employed by McMinnville School District for more than 16 years. She is the cafeteria manager at Sue Buel Elementary School and previously managed Memorial Elementary Kitchen. Karin also assists with catering, and has worked in summer feeding and afterschool programs. Most recently, Karin and one of her staff members were honored for administering the Heimlich maneuver to save the life of one of her students.
“Dedicated cafeteria managers work tirelessly to implement projects and support initiatives to ensure students have access to healthy meals and to improve their dining experience,” said Cindi Hiatt-Henry, president of the Oregon School Nutrition Association. “Karin exemplifies excellence in school foodservice, going above and beyond to enhance the Buel Elementary School community.”
The Manager of the Year Award is in honor of Louise Sublette, a leader in school nutrition in her state and in the national School Nutrition Association. During her 43 years in the profession, Sublette worked in many areas of foodservice—public schools, colleges, hospitals and elderly feeding programs. Sublette dedicated her career to honoring school nutrition professionals and ensuring those who work in school cafeterias have access to professional development opportunities, empowering them to help their school meal programs flourish.
Karin was recently honored at the Oregon School Nutrition Association State Conference on March 14 in Salem, Oregon. As the winner from the state of Oregon, Karin will also be considered for the national School Nutrition Association’s Manager of the Year Award.