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Executive Chef- Sorority Dining

Application Deadline: 03/01/2020

Organization: Washington and Lee University

Location: Lexington, Virginia

Salary: Minimum $51,577

Website: wlu.edu/dining-services

Contact Details:

Organization Details


This position is responsible for the culinary direction and operation of Sorority Dining consisting of six sorority houses which includes the Commissary Kitchen for grab n go items. The Sorority Dining Executive Chef further supports the department's mission by analyzing guest feedback; ensuring safe, healthy, and sustainable food preparations; and creating and sustaining a positive work environment. The Sorority Dining Executive Chef manages all aspects of kitchen operations to include menu and special event planning, ordering, production, culinary quality and service standards while maintaining budgetary compliance. The Sorority Dining Executive Chef leads, supervises, works with and motivates production staff in a fast paced work environment.



  • Works with Associate Director of Dining Services to implement a 3-4 week menu cycle.
  • Plans, develops and executes menus for Sorority Dining taking into account guest preferences, nutritional needs and established procedures.
  • Work in a collaborative manner with the Dining Leadership Team to communicate all requirements for planned menus, events and initiatives.
  • Provide strategic vision and planning for Sorority Dining and the Commissary Kitchen. Consistently seek opportunities for growth and improvement in service opportunities. Stay informed on current trends in the foodservice industry and find opportunities to incorporate new and innovative ideas.
  • Studies and understands allergen and food-preference issues. Plans menus intentionally so that customers with major allergies and preferences always have ample options. Oversees and manages the proper allergen labeling of all dishes.
  • Plans and manages event meals for Sorority Dining, interfacing with other relevant staff on menu planning, decor, and marketing.
  • Serves as the culinary spokesperson for Sorority Dining, meeting with students, student groups, faculty/staff, or other constituents as needed. Spearheads other culinary initiatives on behalf of Sorority Dining, such as cooking classes, contest entries, and culinary promotions.
  • Manages service record entry, recipe database, product identification/linkage into food production software system to ensure accuracy in food ordering, food cost, nutritional information, and minimal food waste.
  • Responsible for budgetary forecasts and year-end results related to food cost and labor expense. Components include; inventory level and utilization, cost per meal, meals per labor hour, overtime expense and general staffing expense.
  • Participates in Dining Leadership meetings, contributing to overall vision and progress of Washington and Lee Dining Services. Approaches issues in Sorority Dining within the context of W&L's overall dining landscape. Assists dining leadership in implementing and maintaining programs that stretch across the whole of Dining Services.
  • Assists in the selection of food and kitchenware vendors. Oversees the food ordering process for Sorority Dining and the Commissary Kitchen, determining quantities and product specifications to be used. Maintains and nurtures relationships with existing vendors to address issues and ensure optimal service levels.
  • Oversees the hiring process for vacant culinary positions in Sorority Dining and the Commissary Kitchen. Reviews applications, conducts interviews, and works with the dining team to recruit and select the best candidates to fill venue needs.
  • Supervises, assigns, assists and schedules work of all culinary staff and supporting personnel involved with food production and service concepts.
  • Inspects food production areas and service areas to observe the quality of food preparation and services, food appearance, cleanliness and sanitation, equipment condition and employee appearance.
  • Engages with team members to ensure program quality, provide role modeling, address concerns and review presentation.
  • Conducts daily production meetings to review plans, assignments, production concerns and other critical information with the culinary team.
  • Predicts and adjusts to guest volume by actively managing food preparation timing, forecasting, batch cooking methodologies, holding times and service quality.
  • Provides hands-on coaching, coordinated trainings and mentoring.
  • Provides consistent feedback and completes team member reviews thoroughly and in a timely manner.
  • Works with Associate Director of Dining Services to establish standards for quality and service and develop short and long-term culinary training programs.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Required Competencies:

  • Strategic Thinking - Able to implement department strategic objectives into actionable plans and goals. Makes departmental goals and priorities clear to team and explains relevance to each person's job. Collects and assesses information on multiple and relevant factors to develop policies and make critical strategic decisions. Demonstrates a clear understanding of detailed financial factors that drive departmental budget (e.g., position requests, hidden costs, impact on morale) when considering decisions.
  • Change Adaptability - Understands the effects of change on the work group and proactively clarifies information to help them deal with a changing work environment. Identifies structural process, people changes and solutions to achieve change initiative goals and targets. Encourages new ways of looking at established processes and practices by soliciting ideas and recognizing/rewarding practical innovation.
  • Communication and Networking - Uses diversified styles of communication (e.g., explains by describing impact or circumstances, etc.) to influence and create buy-in for ideas. Encourages open expression and common understanding of ideas and opinions. Builds networks within and outside own department and leverages these relationships to execute specific plans and initiatives.
  • Drive for Results - Inspires learning within work group by identifying key knowledge areas and sources and facilitating knowledge sharing. Takes full responsibility for unforeseen delays/issues, openly communicates situation and quickly adjusts plans, resources for the best possible outcomes. Proactively looks for areas to improve quality of services to ensure customer satisfaction.
  • Talent Development - Demonstrates understanding of career aspirations of individual work group members and provides structured feedback to them. Encourages greater involvement and provides timely rewards and recognition for efforts. Builds informal relationships with work group. Encourages others to share issues that could hinder achievement of work goals.

Required Qualifications


High school diploma required. Associates degree and/or culinary training preferred. Either five or more years of experience in food service, including supervisory responsibilities, or an equivalent combination of training and experience. Food service management experience in a college or university setting preferred. Interpersonal skills, attention to detail, exceptional time-management skills, strong communication, management, and administrative skills and the ability to maintain confidentiality required. Technology skills including database management, thorough knowledge of MS Office applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) and the ability to use voice mail and e-mail systems. ServSafe certification or must obtain within six months of hire. Must possess a valid driver’s license and a good driving history. Must be able to pass an extensive background check.

EEO Statement

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

Washington and Lee is an Equal Opportunity Employer. As such, we are interested in candidates who are committed to high standards of scholarship, performance and professionalism and to the development of a campus climate that supports equality and diversity in our faculty, staff and student body. Job description requirements are representative, but not all‐inclusive of the knowledge, skill, and abilities needed to successfully perform this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable qualified individuals with disabilities to perform essential functions.

Statement of Commitment to Diversity

Washington and Lee affirms that diverse perspectives and backgrounds enhance our community. We are committed to the recruitment, enrichment, and retention of students, faculty, and staff who embody many experiences, cultures, points of view, interests, and identities. As engaged citizens in a global and diverse society, we seek to advance a positive learning and working environment for all through open and substantive dialogue.