Rafi Taherian, associate vice president, Yale Hospitality at Yale University, was named the 2016 Gold Plate Award winner by the International Foodservice Manufacturers Association (IFMA) on May 21 at Revel Fulton Market in Chicago. Mr. Taherian was nominated by Basic American Foods, JL&A Communications and Sysco and was one of nine outstanding operator executives who were eligible for the award this year after receiving the IFMA Silver Plate award in March. Mr. Taherian represented the Colleges and University Silver Plate Category.
“I love this industry and tonight this industry has loved me back,” Mr. Taherian said, while accepting his award during the IFMA Gold & Silver Plate Celebration that took place in front of more than 600 foodservice professionals. “It is a tremendous honor to receive this award which brings such a rich tradition to the foodservice industry.”
Mr. Taherian’s work history encompasses more than 25 years of progressive expertise in hospitality leadership. Prior to joining Yale in 2008, he spent 13 years at Stanford University, where he served as executive director for Stanford Dining. At Yale, Mr. Taherian’s responsibilities include building and developing high-performing teams through focused and benevolent leadership and directing the department’s strategic planning and initiatives focused on ensuring operational excellence in the delivery of over 14,000 meals per day in 31 food service operations.