Amy Rouse named Alaska and SNA Northwest Region Director of the Year; Michele Powers, Alaska Manager of the Year

For Immediate Release

Media Contact
Gavin M Northey
Tel: 907.903.0276
Email: news@aksna.org

Amy Rouse named Alaska and SNA Northwest Region Director of the Year; Michele Powers, Alaska Manager of the Year

FAIRBANKS, AK – MAY 26, 2020 – The Alaska School Nutrition Association congratulates Amy Rouse, the Alaska and Northwest Regional Director of the Year, and Michele Powers, Alaska Manager of the Year.

Rouse is the Nutrition Services Director in the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District; Powers is the Operations Supervisor in the Anchorage School District.

As the director for the past 13 years, Rouse has used her social media and marketing savvy to inform the community and successfully promote her school meal program. One of the first in Alaska to initiate online free and reduced-price meal applications, Rouse incorporated interactive online menus and electronic production records. She has also supported other districts and the state agency in their move to electronic data systems. Rouse also maintains an engaging social media presence – highlighting program operations, nutrition services staff, holidays, celebrations, promotional events and new program initiatives. Social media plays a big part in sharing news about national and local celebrations, such as National School Lunch Week, National School Breakfast Week, African-American History Month, Alaska Grown Menus, taste tests and guest servers. Keeping her students engaged and excited, Rouse also holds student surveys for new menu items.

She believes in providing educational and training programs for her staff, encouraging her primary managerial staff to participate in state association networking and training opportunities. Professional standards are important to Rouse, who maintains a very structured staff training program during teacher in-service days. More than half of her sites have been awarded with the State of Alaska Food Safety Excellence (SAFE) food safety recognition program this year.

About SNA Awards

NA celebrates members who work every day to ensure well-nourished students across the country are prepared for success. The Director of the Year award recognizes school nutrition directors for the contributions they have made throughout their school nutrition career; the Manager of the Year award, in honor of Louise Sublette recognizes school nutrition managers for the contributions they have made throughout their school nutrition career.

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AKSNA is the state affiliate of the School Nutrition Association (SNA), a national, nonprofit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Recognized as the authority on school nutrition, SNA has been advancing the availability, quality and acceptance of school nutrition programs as an integral part of education since 1946.

Tatiana Wilson Receives 2020 AKSNA High School Graduation Award

For Immediate Release

Media Contact
Gavin M Northey
Tel: 907.903.0276
Email: news@aksna.org

Tatiana Wilson Receives 2020 AKSNA High School Graduation Award

KING SALMON, AK – MAY 19, 2020 – The Alaska School Nutrition Association congratulates Tatiana Wilson, the 2020 AKSNA High School Graduation Award Program recipient.

Wilson graduated May 9, 2020 from Bristol Bay Borough School in King Salmon, AK and plans to attend the University of Alaska Anchorage.  Wilson is the daughter of Theresa Wilson, an AKSNA member and employee of the Lake and Peninsula School District.

Wilson wrote of two inspirational school nutrition professionals in her life, “These two women have shown me so much and are a real inspiration. They have shown me that even small gestures can brighten up someone else’s day. They have also shown me that even while struggling with your own problems you can take time out and show love and compassion for other people. I hope to be a strong and compassionate woman like these two women.”

About the AKSNA High School Graduation Program

The AKSNA High School Graduation Program was founded in the 2019-2020 school year to provide a one-time financial gift to graduating high school seniors who are pursuing postsecondary education.  To be eligible, applicants must be a dependent of an active AKSNA member, receive a high school diploma or GED certificate, and be enrolled in a postsecondary educational institution.  Applicants must submit a short essay on food insecurity, school meal programs, or an inspirational food service worker.

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AKSNA is the state affiliate of the School Nutrition Association (SNA), a national, nonprofit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Recognized as the authority on school nutrition, SNA has been advancing the availability, quality and acceptance of school nutrition programs as an integral part of education since 1946.

School or No School, Alaska’s School Nutrition Heroes Feed Children Throughout the COVID-19 Pandemic

For Immediate Release

Media Contact
Gavin M Northey
Tel: 907.903.0276
Email: news@aksna.org

School or No School, Alaska’s School Nutrition Heroes Feed Children Throughout the COVID-19 Pandemic

ANCHORAGE, AK – APRIL 30, 2020 – The Alaska School Nutrition Association celebrates School Lunch Hero Day Friday, May 1, 2020.  During a normal school day, Alaska’s School Lunch Heroes serve approximately 50,000 healthy and delicious lunches to school children across Alaska supporting child nutrition and learning. 

The COVID-19 Pandemic has caused unprecedented disruption for people around the globe.  Our School Lunch Heroes have stepped up and out from the cafeterias, dawning face masks and disinfectant bottles to fight hunger from school busses and parking lots throughout the Great State of Alaska.

Thanks to our dedicated School Lunch Heroes, Alaskan children continue to have access to school lunches and breakfasts that are a vital nutrient-dense food source.  Federal nutrition standards ensure that schools offer low-fat or fat-free milk, fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein.  School meals also meet limits on calories, sodium and unhealthy fats.

Please join the Alaska School Nutrition Association and the School Nutrition Association in celebrating School Lunch Hero Day and recognizing our community’s heroes.  For more information, visit www.schoollunchheroday.com or contact your local School District’s School Nutrition Program.

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AKSNA is the state affiliate of the School Nutrition Association (SNA), a national, nonprofit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Recognized as the authority on school nutrition, SNA has been advancing the availability, quality and acceptance of school nutrition programs as an integral part of education since 1946.

Alaska School Nutrition Association to Lobby Congress in Support of School Meals

For Immediate Release

Media Contact
Gavin M Northey
Tel: 907.903.0276
Email: news@aksna.org

Alaska School Nutrition Association to Lobby Congress in Support of School Meals

BETHEL, AK – MARCH 7, 2020 – Next week, Marybeth Whalen will represent Alaska’s School Nutrition Professionals in Washington, D.C.  Each school day, School Nutrition Professionals serve approximately 50,000 lunches and 26,000 breakfasts in support of child nutrition and education in the great state of Alaska.

Whalen will participate in School Nutrition Association’s (SNA) 48th annual Legislative Action Conference (LAC). During the conference (March 8 – 10), Whalen will join approximately 900 peers from across the country in urging Congress to increase student access to healthy school meals and support efforts to simplify child nutrition programs.

LAC’s “Charge to the Hill” will allow Alaska’s Congressional Delegation to understand Alaska’s needs and opportunities to support child nutrition programs.  Whalen is scheduled to meet with each of Alaska’s delegates or a member of their staff:

  • Senator Lisa Murkowski, Tuesday, March 10, 2020 at 2:30 p.m.
  • Senator Dan Sullivan, Wednesday, March 11, 2020 at 8:30 a.m.
  • Representative Don Young, Tuesday, March 10, 2020 at 10:00 a.m.

(All times Eastern Daylight Time)

Whalen will discuss the importance of school meal programs and provide insights on school meal program trends, successes and challenges.  Attendees will also share SNA’s 2020 Position Paper, which calls on Congress to eliminate the co-pay for students who are eligible for reduced price meals, allow all states to use Medicaid data to automatically certify eligible students for free and reduced price meals, and develop guidance on ensuring students have adequate time to eat healthy school meals.

SNA’s 2020 Position Paper also addresses the importance of providing flexibility in school menu planning as well as streamlining overly complex child nutrition programs.  USDA’s current and proposed rules to simplify menu planning ensure students continue to receive healthy meals at school, exposing them to a wide variety of fruits and vegetables.

About School Nutrition Association:
The School Nutrition Association (SNA) is a national, non-profit professional organization representing more than 55,000 school nutrition professionals across the country. Founded in 1946, SNA and its members are dedicated to making healthy school meals and nutrition education available to all students. To find out more about SNA’s Legislative Action Conference, visit www.schoolnutrition.org/LAC.

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AKSNA is the state affiliate of the School Nutrition Association (SNA), a national, nonprofit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Recognized as the authority on school nutrition, SNA has been advancing the availability, quality and acceptance of school nutrition programs as an integral part of education since 1946.

Alaskan Schools Encourage Students to Eat Nutritious “Out of This World” Breakfast

For Immediate Release

Media Contact
Gavin M Northey
Tel: 907.903.0276
Email: news@aksna.org

Alaskan Schools Encourage Students to Eat Nutritious “Out of This World” Breakfast

Anchorage, AK  – Feburary 28, 2020 – To encourage more families to take advantage of the healthy choices available for school breakfast, Alaska’s school districts will celebrate National School Breakfast Week during March 2-6, 2020.

Each day, 26,000 students across this great state of Alaska enjoy a nutritious school breakfast.  School breakfast provide students a tasty, nutritious source of energy for a successful learning experience.  Studies show that students who eat school breakfast are more likely to:

  • Reach higher levels of achievement in reading and math
  • Score higher on standardized tests
  • Have better concentration and memory
  • Be more alert
  • Maintain a healthy weight

The National School Breakfast Week (NSBW) campaign theme, “Out of This World,” reminds the entire school community that school breakfast provides a healthy and energizing start to the day for students. School nutrition professionals and students will be encouraged to show their enthusiasm for school breakfast from March 2-6 as districts celebrates with special menus, cafeteria events, and more.

The “Out of This World” campaign is made possible by the School Nutrition Association and Kellogg’s®.

Contact your local School District to learn more about NSBW activities and menus.

Parents and students can follow the fun on www.Facebook.com/TrayTalk using the hashtag #NSBW20.  To learn more about NSBW, visit www.schoolnutrition.org/SchoolMeals.  

About National School Breakfast Week

National School Breakfast Week was launched in 1989 to raise awareness of the availability of the School Breakfast Program, a federally assisted meal program operating in public and non-profit private schools and residential child care institutions since 1975. 

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AKSNA is the state affiliate of the School Nutrition Association (SNA), a national, nonprofit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Recognized as the authority on school nutrition, SNA has been advancing the availability, quality and acceptance of school nutrition programs as an integral part of education since 1946.

Elizabeth “Libby” Edelman Recognized with 2020 Dean Hamburg Award for Commitment and Dedication to Alaska School Nutrition

For Immediate Release

Media Contact
Gavin M. Northey
Tel: 907.903.0276
Email: news@aksna.org

Elizabeth “Libby” Edelman Recognized with 2020 Dean Hamburg Award for Commitment and Dedication to Alaska School Nutrition

Anchorage, AK – Februrary 5, 2020 – Elizabeth “Libby” Edelman of Valdez, AK was recognized at the 52nd Annual Alaska School Nutrition Association (AKSNA) Conference with the Dean Hamburg Award.  Edelman is the third recipient of the award which recognizes commitment and dedication to school nutrition.

Also recognized at the Annual Conference, Walter Williams of Dillingham, AK, and Tanya Dube of Anchorage, AK, with the President’s Award recognizing their service to the AKSNA Board

Adrianne Schwartz of Juneau, AK was also recognized with the President’s Award; Schwartz was the 2019 Alaska and Northwest Regional School Nutrition Association (SNA) Director of the Year.

School Nutrition professionals across the Great State of Alaska serve 76,000 nutritious school breakfasts and lunches to energize Alaskan students each school day.  Nutrition professionals such as Edelman, Williams, Dube, and Schwartz are committed to supporting Alaska’s education system and fighting childhood hunger.

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AKSNA is the state affiliate of the School Nutrition Association (SNA), a national, nonprofit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Recognized as the authority on school nutrition, SNA has been advancing the availability, quality and acceptance of school nutrition programs as an integral part of education since 1946

AKSNA Encourages Adequate Meal and Recess Times, Commends Anchorage School District’s Wellness Initiative

For Immediate Release

Media Contact
Marybeth Whalen
Tel: 907.543.4844
Email: marybeth_whalen@lksd.org

Alaska School Nutrition Association Encourages Adequate Meal and Recess Times, Commends Anchorage School District’s Wellness Initiative

Anchorage, AK  – November 25, 2019 – In September, the Anchorage School District released a statement detailing a new program in 20% of its schools. ASD and partner organization ASD60 are partnering together on the Wellness Initiative, a “pilot program that is looking at the benefits of increased physical activity throughout the day and increased time for students to eat.” 21 of the school district’s 102 schools are participating in the program.

The ASD press release cites both the US Department of Health’s Office of Disease Prevention & Health Promotion’s 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in their respective recommendations for “children and adolescents [to] engage in 60 minutes or more of moderate to vigorous physical activity daily”, and that “students have at least 20 minutes once they are seated to enjoy their meals and socialize.”

According to Melanie Sutton, ASD’s Health and Physical Education Curriculum Coordinator, “all the data is being collected and studied throughout the year. The District will be looking at how added lunch, recess, and physical activity is affecting reading scores, classroom and student behaviors, classroom management, and scheduling.”

At the end of ASD’s data collection period, both an internal evaluator and an evaluator from Harvard University will look over the results and compare them to similar programs elsewhere in the United States. Should the data suggest the extended lunches and recess has a positive effect on students, ASD has said they will look at implementing the Initiative districtwide. “Bottom line,” said Sutton, “we want to do what’s best for our students and make sure we are giving them the education and learning environment so they can succeed in life.”

The Wellness Initiative’s goals align with the recommendations of the School Nutrition Association’s 2019 position paper, which states “Research demonstrates that school breakfast and lunch programs support obesity prevention, student health and academic achievement. Schools must ensure students have adequate time to consume these meals.”

In addition to time considerations for foods like fresh fruits and vegetables that are high in fiber and take longer to eat, SNA insists that “any effort to address time to eat must focus on “seat time”, as lunch periods also require time for students to get to the cafeteria and collect their meals.”

The Alaska chapter of the School Nutrition Association (AKSNA), SNA national, and the Wellness Initiative program at the Anchorage School District all strive to find best practices to implement CDC recommendations that children get “sufficient time to receive and consume a meal with at least…20 minutes for eating lunch after being seated.”

AKSNA commends the Wellness Initiative for its study of best practices, and recognizes the complexities of setting schedules and serving students in a timely fashion under sometimes overcrowded and challenging circumstances. AKSNA looks forward to learning from the Wellness Initiative program along with all school nutrition professionals and educators. 

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AKSNA is the state affiliate of the School Nutrition Association (SNA), a national, nonprofit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Recognized as the authority on school nutrition, SNA has been advancing the availability, quality and acceptance of school nutrition programs as an integral part of education since 1946.

Alaska School Districts Celebrate National School Lunch Week

For Immediate Release

Media Contact
Gavin M Northey
Tel: 907.903.0276
Email: news@aksna.org

Alaskan School Districts Celebrate National School Lunch Week

Anchorage, AK – October 13, 2019 – To recognize the National School Lunch Program, serving 30 million children each day, Alaskan schools will celebrate National School Lunch Week (NSLW) from October 14-18, 2019. The theme, “School Lunch: What’s on Your Playlist,” spotlights how today’s school cafeterias are serving up healthy menu items that kids want to eat, with increased choice and customization.

School Nutrition professionals across the great state of Alaska serve nutritious lunches to more than 50,000 children each day.  Many Alaskan schools will join schools around the nation celebrating NSLW, with fun activities and events to promote healthy school lunches.  Students and parents are encouraged to check with tehir local School District’s web site or school to find out what activities are being hosted in their schools for NSLW.

The “School Lunch Playlist” campaign is made possible by the nonprofit School Nutrition Association. Parents and students can follow the fun using the hashtags #NSLW19, #SchoolLunchPlaylist and #SchoolLunch. For more information on National School Lunch Week, visit https://schoolnutrition.org/nslw/.

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AKSNA is the state affiliate of the School Nutrition Association (SNA), a national, nonprofit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Recognized as the authority on school nutrition, SNA has been advancing the availability, quality and acceptance of school nutrition programs as an integral part of education since 1946.

Adrianne Schwartz Announced Alaska and Northwest Regional Director Of The Year

For Immediate Release

Media Contact
Gavin M Northey
Tel: 907.903.0276
Email: news@aksna.org

Adrianne Schwartz Announced Alaska and Northwest Regional Director of the Year

JUNEAU, AK – MAY 17, 2019 – The Alaska School Nutrition Association (AKSNA) is pleased to announce Adrianne Schwartz of Juneau School District has earned the distinctions of School Nutrition Association (SNA)’s 2019 Northwest Region Director of the Year and AKSNA’s 2019 Director of the Year.

Within her first year as supervisor of the food service program, Schwartz added hot lunches and salad bars to all school sites, skyrocketing student lunch participation. Schwartz also implemented a school-sponsored Universal Breakfast program at the district’s elementary and middle schools, as well as their alternative high school. Working with a local interagency group, Schwartz reaches outside her school duties to address how the district meets hunger needs throughout the whole community. A strong advocate for professional development and supporter of the Alaska School Nutrition Association (AKSNA), Schwartz encourages her staff to attend state agency trainings and conferences when possible. Leading by example, she creates fun events around special school nutrition promotions, including National School Lunch Week and National School Breakfast Week. Schwartz leads a monthly School Nutrition Advisory Committee and sits on the state USDA Foods Advisory Committee in an effort to ensure children in her district and across the state have access to healthy meals.

Schwartz will be honored in July during the Red-Carpet Awards Ceremony at the SNA’s Annual National Conference, July 14 – 16, 2019 in St. Louis, MO.

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AKSNA is the state affiliate of the School Nutrition Association (SNA), a national, nonprofit professional organization representing more than 58,000 members who provide high-quality, low-cost meals to students across the country. Recognized as the authority on school nutrition, SNA has been advancing the availability, quality and acceptance of school nutrition programs as an integral part of education since 1946.

School Nutrition Programs Now Have One-Stop Recipe Resource

This press release is posted on behalf of HealthySchoolRecipes.com. This posting is for informational purposes only and shall not be construed as an endorsement of the site or its content.

HealthySchoolRecipes.com launches an essential resource for school nutrition professionals who plan menus or prepare food for child nutrition programs. The site brings together recipes from schools and education departments across the country, as well as non-profit organizations and product manufacturers, into a beautiful, searchable, and easy to use resource that meets the unique needs of school nutrition programs.

The site was created by a team of school nutrition and culinary experts who understand that finding good recipes (that are flavorful, that work and that credit properly) has been a constant challenge for school nutrition professionals.

“Digging through numerous websites and PDF files is time consuming and can be a barrier to improving school nutrition menus”, said Executive Director, Catharine Powers. “Meals are served in over 93,000 schools each day, with over 31 million lunches and 11 million breakfasts eaten by students every year. School Nutrition professionals need better resources for creative, healthy menu items that meet the needs of today’s students”, she explained.

Along with Executive Chef Samantha Cowens-Gasbarro and an accomplished advisory team of school nutrition experts, Powers has created the solution and is confident that site will have a lasting positive impact on the meals that are served to kids in schools.

Key features:

  • The site and all resources are FREE to all users.
  • Hundreds of recipes are currently available with more added every day.
  • Users are invited to add their recipes to share with the school nutrition community, as well as rate and comment on recipes submitted by others.
  • Expert content in form of blogs, newsletters, and how-to videos.

For Additional Information visit: HealthySchoolRecipes.com

Contact Information:
Catharine Powers
PO Box 5212
Akron, OH 44334
Phone: (330) 416-5943
cathy@healthyschoolrecipes.com

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