September 16, 2002

Contact: Adrianne Tucker
Posted: September 16, 2002

Scott RitterMIDDLEBURY, Vt.-Peter J. Napolitano, director of dining services for Middlebury College, was voted the 2002-2003 president-elect of the National Association of College & University Food Services (NACUFS) at its national conference in Orlando, Fla., on July 16-20.

NACUFS is a trade association for campus dining departments at institutions of higher education in the United States, Canada and abroad. A three-year term comprised of president-elect, president and past-president roles, Napolitano's leadership will include serving as an active member of the board and on the executive and finance committees. He also will direct workshops on leadership, professional development, dining trends and other industry topics.

"I've been in the hospitality business all of my life," said Napolitano. "My parents, who owned their own bakery and convenience store, served and helped others. They taught me the value of service to others, and that humility is a valued quality of one's own character."

Napolitano, who has 28 years of foodservice experience, began his career in college as a student employee for James Madison University's dining services, ultimately joining the department on a full-time basis as a manger. He subsequently became assistant director of dining services at the University of Pennsylvania, and director of dining services for the University of Rochester, Dartmouth College and Middlebury College, respectively. He has been Middlebury's director since 1997.

"I chose college and university dining services as a career because of the impact I can have on students' lives as they come through our doors each year. It's something I've always wanted to do professionally. There is no greater feeling than that of helping others," Napolitano said.

Under his leadership, Napolitano's campuses have won several NACUFS Loyal E. Horton Dining Awards, and, in 1999, Middlebury College received an Ivy Award of Distinction from Restaurants & Institutions magazine.

An active NACUFS participant since 1994, Napolitano has served as a member of the association's board of directors, co-chair of the 1997 national conference in Buffalo, N.Y., a chair of NACUFS environmental awareness committee, and a member of several professional practices review teams. He is a former Region I president and vice president, has twice co-chaired a Region I conference, and has spoken at several regional and national conferences.

"NACUFS has helped me in my career by offering opportunities for networking, education, training and mentoring," said Napolitano. "As its president-elect, I will have the opportunity to help others in the profession, and give back some of what I received. Now the work starts!" he said.

Napolitano, who lives in Middlebury with his wife Ruth and their four children, also serves his local community as a volunteer for both the summer and winter Vermont Special Olympics.