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October 10, 2017

Chris RoderiqueChris Roderique Honored with Salute to Excellence Award

Chris Roderique, executive chef and owner of Piggy’s Restaurant and Blues Lounge in La Crosse, will receive the Wisconsin Restaurant Association Education Foundation’s (WRA EF) Salute to Excellence Chef Award at the industry’s Celebration of Excellence dinner taking place on October 22nd at the Osthoff Resort in Elkhart Lake. He is honored for his dedication to excellence in foodservice and his passion for educating and training the future leaders of the industry.

“Chef Roderique has a strong community-minded approach to business and a desire to help others,” said Connie Fedor, Executive Director of the WRA EF. “He is a passionate advocate for education and enjoys helping young professionals reach their full potential.”

Roderique is a leader and industry mentor who believes education plays a key role in the success and growth of the industry. Always civic-minded, Roderique has been active in the community including serving as the finance chair for the La Crosse County Convention and Visitors Bureau and acting as the State School Nutrition Association Conference Attendees Boot Camp leader. He also was past president of the La Crosse Area Convention and Visitors Bureau and previously a member of the Western Technical College Culinary Program Advisory Board.

He also has been a champion of the Wisconsin Restaurant Association (WRA) and the WRA EF. He currently serves as vice president for the WRA La Crosse Chapter and supports the WRA EF and the ProStart program.

Roderique was a World Food Championships qualifier in 2016 and was awarded the Tourism Business of the Year Making a Difference Award in 2010. He also was honored by the WRA La Crosse Chapter with the Outstanding Restaurateur of the Year award in 2009.

The WRA EF recognizes six individuals and one company for dedication and commitment to education in the restaurant industry as Salute to Excellence honorees. Other 2017 Salute to Excellence honorees include: RC Schroeder, Jr. (Fox Valley Technical College), Glee Brechler (James Madison Memorial High School), Trey Hester (Rocky Rococo Restaurants), Brian Frakes (Pfister Hotel- Marcus Hotels and Resorts), Tom Surwillo (Milwaukee Area Technical College) and Gordon Food Service.

Each honoree creates opportunities for people interested in foodservice industry careers. While they have worked in a variety of roles and in different parts of the state, they all share enthusiasm and optimism for the future of the restaurant industry.

The Salute to Excellence awards will be presented at the 2017 Celebration of Excellence on Sunday, October 22 at the Osthoff Resort in Elkhart Lake. More information on the event is available at www.wirestaurant.org.

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The WRA Education Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that has been in existence since 1987 and is one of the nation’s largest state restaurant association foundations. The Foundation vision is to advance professionalism through education, scholarships and community involvement to ensure the future success of the foodservice industry.

The ProStart® program, administered by National Restaurant Association Solutions, LLC and state restaurant associations, is a college-prep, two-year curriculum designed to teach high school students the skills needed for a career in the restaurant and foodservice industry. Students also have the opportunity to participate in paid internships where industry managers mentor them.

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Wisconsin Restaurant Association • 2801 Fish Hatchery Rd. • Madison, WI 53713 • Tel: 608.270.9950 • Toll Free: 800.589.3211 • FAX: 608.270.9960