Clock Tower Cafe wins DA Connelly Award
KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany – After 18 months of preparation, evaluations, and intense competition, the Clock Tower Café bested 197 other dining facilities to win the 2016 Department of the Army Philip A. Connelly Best Garrison Dining Facility Award.
With over 198 dining facilities Army-wide, only 5 were remaining alongside the Clock Tower Café by the time the competition reached the Department of the Army level. At this level of the competition, examiners from Fort Lee, Va. visited each installation and judged the overall performance in each category. The winner was decided based on these on-site evaluations.
The Connelly awards program began in 1968 in recognition of former President of the International Food Service Executives Association (IFSEA), Phillip A. Connelly for the top performing units to include Army garrison dining facilities, Army field kitchens and civilian dining facilities. Evaluators graded in multiple areas including appearance and attitudes of personnel, supervision and training and food preparation and quality.
“I can’t explain in words how I feel right now,” said Sgt. 1st class Keshon Henry, Dining Facility Manager Clock Tower Café. “To see my staff happy when I told them ‘we’ won, I am proud of them and to be their dining facility manager.”
Henry continued to say that with over 100 years of food service experience between the Soldiers and Civilians in the dining facility, there is constant mentoring and an environment where everyone has the opportunity to thrive. It was important for everyone to pull together, to make this happen.
“This was a total team effort to include the 405th Army Field Support Brigade, Garrison side of the house, Installation management Command Europe Region (IMCOM) and 21st Theater Sustainment Command, everyone was a stakeholder for the Clock Tower Café to win this competition,” said Chief Warrant Officer 4 Jeffrey Manninen, 21st TSC Senior Food Advisor.
With one award under their belt, the team at the Clock Tower Café already have their sites on defending their place at the top.
“My goal now is to keep the trophy here in Europe,” said Ronald J. Barta, Director Europe Food Program, Army Organization Manager Interactive Customer Evaluation. “This will cause our competition in CONUS and other OCONUS locations to step up their game. I say "bring it on".
Representatives from the Clock Tower Café will be presented their award by senior military personnel and the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) in Chicago.