Purposeful Work Unplugged to present Dining Services’ Schwartz, Lacey

Director of Bates Dining Services Cheryl Lacey (left) and Assistant Vice President for Dining, Conferences and Campus Events Christine Schwartz. (Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College)

Director of Bates Dining Services Cheryl Lacey (left) and Assistant Vice President for Dining, Conferences and Campus Events Christine Schwartz. Known for bringing a sense of fun to the nationally recognized Bates dining operation, the duo donned lobster-claw boppers for a recent photo shoot. (Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College)

Leading a team of more than 100 that serves more than a million meals a year, the two executives in charge of the Bates College dining operation will share lessons from their lives and careers in a Q&A at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 7, in the Fireplace Lounge in the Bates Commons, 136 Central Ave.

In the hourlong Purposeful Work Unplugged discussion, titled Behind the Napkin Board: Big Business, Right Here on Campus, Darby Ray, director of the Harward Center for Community Partnerships at Bates, will interview Christine Schwartz, assistant vice president for dining, conferences and events, and Cheryl Lacey, director of dining services.

The discussion will explore work, career paths and finding purpose at Bates.

The Purposeful Work Unplugged series is open to the public at no cost. Sponsored by the Purposeful Work initiative at Bates, the series presents notable alumni, staff, faculty and guests in reflection about careers and traits that support meaningful work. For more information, please call 207-786-6128.

A native of New York, Schwartz came to Bates in 1997 as associate director of dining services, became dining director in 2002 and in 2012 took the helm of the Dining, Conferences and Campus Events office. Her Bates achievements include overseeing the creation of the college’s dining Commons, which opened in 2008, and playing a central role in making Bates a nationally recognized leader in sustainable food service practices.

Schwartz earned a bachelor’s degree in social science at Lynchburg College, in Virginia, where she started her food service career, first as a student worker and then as catering manager. She has also held collegiate dining positions at Sweet Briar College, in Virginia, and at St. Mary’s College in Maryland.

Lacey grew up in rural Maine. The first member of her immediate family to attend college, she graduated from Middlebury with a double major in psychology and literary studies. Though Lacey had intended to pursue a career in psychology, working in dining services as a student gave her a passion for collegiate dining.

After graduation, she worked in Middlebury Dining Services for 14 years before trading in the glorious Green Mountains for the dramatic coast of Maine. She joined Bates’ Dining Services in 1998 and became director in 2012.

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