Burkhardt Earns Second National Food Service Award Named One of Five ‘School Nutrition Heroes’
Director of Wellness and Child Nutrition Chris Burkhardt was honored
with his second national food service award this school year.
Burkhardt was one of just five “School Nutrition Heroes” named
nationally by the School Nutrition Foundation (SNF) to represent the
many professionals who have dedicated their lives to serving the needs
of their school district and community.
“Chris’s passion and dedication to his community make him a true school nutrition hero,”
said School Nutrition Association CEO Patricia Montague, CAE.
“Through his commitment to health and wellness, he serves as a role
model for both students and staff. He goes above and beyond to better
the community he serves.”
for the School Nutrition Foundation's recent spotlight on Burkhardt.
the moment he arrived at Lakota, Chris has been a driver of
innovation in our school cafeterias,” said Lakota’s Chief Operating
Officer Chris Passarge. “We are not surprised to see his
accomplishments being recognized at the national level on more than
one occasion. He is a great asset to our students, staff and the whole
The recipients will be recognized at SNF’s
Celebration of School Nutrition Heroes on Feb. 29, during School
Nutrition Association’s 44th Legislative Action Conference in
Washington, D.C. The evening will celebrate extraordinary men and women
in the school nutrition profession who make a difference in the lives
of school children and go beyond their daily responsibilities.
Burkhardt’s accolades is his commitment to the health and wellness of
both students and staff. He has secured grants to provide biometric
screenings, flu shots, and health and wellness assessments for district
employees. He also created the Pedometer Challenge where participants
strive to achieve 10,000 steps per day in advance of running or
walking in the annual Shamrock Shuffle, a community 5K and 10K race.
passion for wellness extends to the community as well, where he
serves on the board for Reach Out Lakota. He has leveraged his
relationships with food distributors to dramatically increase the
availability of fruits and vegetables to families served by the food
pantry. He’s also established a process through which families can
apply for free and reduced price school meals and get nutrition
education or special dietary assistance through the organization.
Burkhardt is also active in advocating for positive legislative
changes around child nutrition.