CHICAGO — The 2009 National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show, held May 16-19, 2009, at McCormick Place in Chicago, will feature more than 65 free education sessions led by industry experts. Topics covered include menu trends, environmental sustainability, workforce development and profit-building.
 
Sessions include:
  • Join the Green Restaurant Revolution: Learn proven "green" practices from industry leaders Ted Turner and George McKerrow, founders of Ted's Montana Grill. Turner and McKerrow will engage attendees in a candid discussion about their top-down initiative creating a green and sustainable restaurant chain. Chris Koetke, dean of The School of Culinary Arts, Kendall College, will moderate.
  • How To Recession-Proof Your Business: Discover results-oriented strategies to ensure your business remains relevant in this changing economic environment. Bryan Dodge, an expert in the field of management and leadership in restaurant operations, will help attendees understand how passion, enthusiasm, positivity and focus all play a part to maintain a competitive edge and grow profits.
  • How to Stand Out in a Tough Economy: Representatives from NRA partner Fishbowl Marketing will lead a panel discussion on how restaurants can succeed even in this downturn. The session will cover innovative strategies to adapt to this economic environment, including monitoring and adjusting budgets, and allocating funds to create marketing buzz.
  • Crush The Box: Creative Leadership Ideas for Developing Managers: Improve your bottom line with engaged and effective managers. John Isbell, President of CHART (Council of Hotel and Restaurant Trainers) and director of training and development for IHOP Corp., will share insights on how to develop visionary managers to lead motivated teams.
  • On the Menu: What's Hot, What's Not, and What's Next: Create patron-pleasing menus for any restaurant. Nancy Kruse, foodservice trends expert and president of The Kruse Company, will share the food, beverage and restaurant concept insights needed to successfully create innovative, on-trend menus.
  • Sodium and the Healthy Plate: Sodium reduction is a major industry hot topic and will continue to be at the forefront of nutrition issues in 2009. Moderated by Shelia Cohn Weiss, R.D., director of nutrition policy, NRA, this panel includes: James M. Galloway, assistant surgeon general, rear admiral, U.S.Public Health Service, regional health administrator, Region V; Robert Earl, MPH, R.D., vice president of science policy, nutrition and health, Grocery Manufacturers Association; Pam Smith, R.D., consultant, Shaping America's Health; and Michelle Reinholm, International Food Information Council.
Education sessions will be held in McCormick Place's South Hall on Level 4, and in the Technology Pavilion on Level 3 in the North Hall all four days of the show. For a full schedule of sessions, visit www.restaurant.org/show. In addition, a separate education program focused on beverage alcohol will be featured in the 2009 International Wine, Spirits & Beer Event (IWSB), held in conjunction with the show May 17-18. See www.winespiritsbeer.org for scheduling.

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