News and Press Releases

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Congrats to our own kristina keer!

2021 Apple Awards Winner

Department Employee of the Year
Kristina Keer
Training Specialist, Nutrition Services

"Education isn’t just memorizing information, it’s taking that information, being able to use it, and evolve with it to be a better person. Education is about working with others, learning from our combined knowledge to produce a better outcome."

The 2020-2021 school year was filled with firsts, especially for Training Specialist Kristina Keer with DCSD Nutrition Services. As the department's first Training Specialist, she faced a steep learning curve to ensure consistent and clear training for Nutrition Services staff.

Keer instituted processes and developed training material to meet the needs of the department. Her work was crucial to the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) in 2020. The majority of the Kitchen Managers were new to the summer program. Keer had to make certain each person understood the Colorado Department of Education (CDE) requirements and maintain a safe environment for staff and students.

Director of Nutrition Services Brent Craig writes: "It is breathtaking to see the innovation, standardization, and knowledge [Kristina] has brought to our program. This past year has been a great test for us all, and she has taken her skills and caring nature to new levels to help us through this pandemic. Tri-County Health commented on how well we kept our program working within the guidelines of COVID-19 and its sanitation schedules, social distancing, and general operational excellence. Kristina was at the heart and leading the way to make that happen."

As a leader, Keer dedicated time and initiative to build a positive climate and culture within the department by strengthening personal and professional relationships. Keer is also an Assistant Track & Field Coach at ThunderRidge High School and actively volunteers with local organizations such as Food Bank of the Rockies.

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DCSD Nutrition Services Monthly Featured Business for Signarama

Colorado Proud Day at Cougar Run

Highlands Ranch, CO- September 14, 2016

In Celebration of Colorado Proud School Meal Day, DCSD’s Nutrition Services and Cougar Run Elementary hosted an interactive learning experience for students. On Wednesday, September 14th, fourth grade students at Cougar Run met with District Chef Ryan Repplinger and Monse Hines, owner of Monse’s Taste of El Salvador, to learn about the Colorado Proud Program and a traditional Salvadoran dish called a Pupusa.

A Pupusa is a thick, handmade corn tortilla that can be stuffed with a variety of fillings. Monse makes her pupusa’s with local, organic, and non-gmo ingredients. For Colorado Proud Day, the feature was a Black Bean & Cheese Pupusa served with Tico’s Vegetarian Green Chili Sauce. Both items are made by local Colorado companies and will be offered on the upcoming winter menu.

Douglas County Nutrition Services Team Take the Stage in Annual Chef Challenge
Copper Mountain, CO- June 13, 2016

Chefs and kitchen staff from four Colorado School Districts, including DC’s own District Chef Ryan Repplinger and Heritage Elementary Kitchen Manager Tara Morgione competed in the annual Chef Challenge at the Colorado School Nutrition Association Summer Conference.

Teams called on their culinary skills as they faced-off against one another in front of a packed room to prepare a delicious plated entrée. The event, sponsored by Red Gold and Ultragrain, gave teams a variety of tomato and grain products to choose from as well as an array of fresh produce, meats, cheese, and sauces. The catch? Each team had to use at least on Red Gold and One Ultragrain product plus at least three of five items from a mystery basket. This year, the mystery ingredients were artichoke hearts, avocado, Heath bar, vanilla coffee creamer, and dried cranberries. The dishes the teams created ranged from a quesadilla to gazpacho. While the title ended up going to the Weld County District 6 team, Chef Ryan and Tara brought tough competition with their Pulled Pork Crostini with Mole Sauce and Side Salad with a Tomato Vinaigrette. Now that they have one competition under their belt and have a better understanding of how it works, they will be an unstoppable team for next year’s Chef Challenge.

Tara Morgione and Chef Ryan Repplinger participating in CSNA Chef Challenge