Director of Culinary Excellence in Yale Hospitality

Connecticut, United States
19 Nov 2018
End of advertisement period
19 Jan 2019
Contract Type
Full Time

Position Focus:

The Director of Culinary Excellence is responsible for the culinary vision, innovation, systems, recipes, menus and product development to support the Yale Hospitality operations. This position provides effective leadership, mentor ship, support and models culinary excellence to team members. This position also drives a focus on quality standards, continual improvement, professional development and training while developing a culture of exceptional food quality and cutting-edge presentation.

In addition, this position ensures that the culinary vision aligns with departmental sustainability ambitions and core values by working closely with, and establishing effective communications with the Senior Leadership Team Members, Supervising Chefs, Marketing Manager, Wellness Manager, and Training and Development Manager. This position reports to the Associate Vice President of Yale Hospitality.

Essential Duties

  1. Drives culinary vision and establishes operational methodology for excellence. Cultivates talent and fosters continued quality improvement standards.
  2. Inspires the culinary team to achieve excellence in culinary preparation and service to students, guests and Yale community. Develops signature and best in class food and concepts.
  3. Represents Yale Hospitality across the industry as a leader of innovation and operational excellence.
  4. Creates an architecture of menus, concepts, standards that aligns our core values in Health & Wellness and Sustainability, in collaboration with the Health & Wellness Manager.
  5. Leads culinary team in the development and administration of menu management and supports the academic and seasonal menu development for all operations that are nutritious, healthy, sustainable and financially viable.
  6. Provides over site for quality assurance and testing in recipes to ensure consistency and to meet and exceed performance standards for food quality and production procedures.
  7. Collaborates with operational directors on innovation of new products and services, creates exciting and engaging student focused initiatives and trends.
  8. Develops culinary SOPs and presentation standards in partnership with the Senior Leadership Team, unit managers and the Wellness Manager.
  9. Establishes systems and processes to ensure quality assurance and product excellence in all Yale Dining locations. Provides necessary feedback to stakeholders and monitor progress.
  10. Develops and implements communication plans to ensure teams have resources needed to execute seasonal based menus, merchandising and programs.
  11. Partners with and leverages external resources including vendors and manufacturers on programs and special events.
  12. Collaborates with the Director of Supply Chain and Sustainability to utilize cost-saving opportunities and leverage vendor support. Analyzes production patterns, optimizes preparation methodology and creates efficiency model to achieve established departmental and operational food costs.
  13. Provides leadership and operational support during campus-wide hospitality events, reunions and campus emergencies.
  14. Partners with Training Manager in developing talent and further enhancing culinary and leadership skills of staff.
  15. Establishes objectives and collaborates with union to conduct contractually required competency evaluation for staff advancement opportunities.

Required Education and Experience

Bachelor’s Degree in Culinary Arts and 10 years of increasingly responsible culinary management leadership experience in a large, complex food and beverage organization, or equivalent combination of education and experience.

Required Skill/Ability 1:

Demonstrated ability with quality control, and menu and recipe development. Exceptional culinary ability and expertise.

Required Skill/Ability 2:

Demonstrated ability in training and development in a large, complex food and beverage organization. Proven advanced knowledge of international cuisine, nutritional cooking techniques and vegetarian/vegan principles.

Required Skill/Ability 3:

Demonstrated ability with Menu Management System, and/or Food Ordering System and/or Recipe Development System.

Required Skill/Ability 4:

Strong leadership, managerial and organizational skills. Demonstrated success in managing and developing teams to achieve desired results. Strong oral and written communication, supervisory, conceptual and analytical skills.

Required Skill/Ability 5:

Strong computer knowledge, including, Word, Excel, PowerPoint.

Required Licenses or Certifications

Current ServSafe certification based on the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation.

Weekend Hours Required: Yes

Evening Hours Required: Yes

Drug Screen: No

Health Screening: No

Background Check Requirements

All candidates for employment will be subject to pre-employment background screening for this position, which may include motor vehicle, DOT certification, drug testing and credit checks based on the position description and job requirements. All offers are contingent upon the successful completion of the background check. Please visit for additional information on the background check requirements and process.

Posting Disclaimer

The intent of this job description is to provide a representative summary of the essential functions that will be required of the position and should not be construed as a declaration of specific duties and responsibilities of the particular position. Employees will be assigned specific job-related duties through their hiring departments.

Affirmative Action Statement:

Yale University considers applicants for employment without regard to, and does not discriminate on the basis of, an individual’s sex, race, color, religion, age, disability, status as a veteran, or national or ethnic origin; nor does Yale discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity or expression. Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 protects people from sex discrimination in educational programs and activities at institutions that receive federal financial assistance. Questions regarding Title IX may be referred to the University’s Title IX Coordinator, at, or to the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, 8th Floor, Five Post Office Square, Boston MA 02109-3921. Telephone: 617.289.0111, Fax: 617.289.0150, TDD: 800.877.8339, or Email:

Note: Yale University is a tobacco-free campus