Vicki joined Columbia University in 2007. Under her leadership, Columbia Dining has built a solid reputation as a high-quality, customer-oriented department. Vicki’s focus for Dining is providing total customer satisfaction and meeting the needs of the diverse Columbia population. Prior to joining Columbia, Vicki was the Senior Director of Marketing for Sodexho Campus Services. Vicki holds an Associate Degree in Operational Sciences from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. In her free time, Vicki enjoys baking (brownies are her specialty), reading, and caring for her three dogs, Sophy, Emma and Casey.
Aaron joined the Columbia dining team in July 2007 as JJ’s Place Manager, where he helped launch JJ’s catering for students. In 2009, Aaron became the Production Manager at John Jay Dining Hall, taking on the responsibility of all purchasing for Residence Hall Dining. In 2011, Aaron was promoted to General Manager of Ferris Booth Commons. In 2012, Aaron was promoted to Assistant Director of Dining. Aaron is a graduate student at Teachers College, where he is pursuing a Masters of Arts in Higher and Postsecondary Education Administration. He looks forward to continuing his career in higher education and helping students throughout their college experience.
Kristie Koerner joined the Columbia Dining team in 2010. She has worked in community and clinical settings, including oncology, bariatric, renal, neonatal, cardiac, and intensive care units, nutrition support, foodservice, YMCA, WIC Clinics, public schools, and geriatric care. Kristie is a member of the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics, New York State Dietetic Association, Greater New York Dietetic Association, and Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network. She was born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee and graduated from Vanderbilt University. Kristie writes a daily nutrition blog for the Columbia community.
Rosie has worked in customer service for Dining since 1998. Known for her positive energy, smile and charisma, her responsibilities include reassuring parents that their children will have healthy and hearty meals while away from home. Most importantly, Rosie works to resolve questions or issues students may have concerning their dining accounts. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her family and preparing healthy and hearty meals.
Angelo developed his passion for cooking at a young age, watching cooking shows with Julia Child and Graham Kerr and also working at his Uncle's coffee shop. Angelo is a graduate with honors of the New York Restaurant School. His greatest pleasure is providing hospitality through good food and service to our guests every day. He and his wife, Andrea, live on Long Island and have two children, Dean and Ellie. In his time off Angelo enjoys kayaking and gardening.
Cafe 212 & C-Store
Hazel joined Columbia University in November 1984 and according to her, “it’s been a great 29-year-long journey.” Hazel’s first position at Columbia was on the kitchen staff. After a few computer courses, Hazel became an accounts receivable administrator in John Jay, enabling her to draw from her prior accounting experience in Panama City. Later, she was promoted to manager, where she led the JJ’s Place opening team. Following her success, she was appointed to open Ferris Booth Commons, an experience she believes was her biggest opportunity at Columbia. She then went on to manage Carleton Lounge, Lenfest Cafe, and Uris Deli. Hazel is the recipient of the Robert Leer Service Award, an honor given each year to a member of the faculty, administration, or staff who clearly demonstrates commitment to working with students. Hazel was born in the Republic of Panama, where she graduated from Gaston Faraudo, an accounting school in Panama City.
Donald joined Columbia University in 2009 as the Chef Manager for Café 212, Butler, and Dodge. He is a well-seasoned chef who truly enjoys the art of cooking. Donald began his career on the culinary team at the Park Ridge Marriott. Later, he served as Executive Chef for an Assisted Living Facility in Emerson NJ, until he became the Director of Dining for the Johnson Wood Company. An entrepreneur, Donald also opened a pizza café; he was a preferred off-premise caterer for television and movie sets; he developed a line of baked gourmet brownies for large supermarket chains; he launched a gift basket Internet business; and he packaged handmade fresh mozzarella for supermarkets and catering halls in the tri-state area. Donald earned his degree in Culinary Arts from Johnson and Wales University for Culinary Arts in Providence, RI.
Jafor joined Columbia University in November 2010 as Assistant Manager at Café 212. He has been thrilled to bring his corporate food service and hospitality experience to higher education, where he enjoys working with the diverse student body. Prior to Columbia, he spent 22 years with Sodexo at the Merrill Lynch World Financial Center location, where he worked as a waiter and cashier, then gained financial and technical support experience. Jafor has a diploma in Civil Engineering from his native country, Bangladesh, where he moved from over 25 years ago. He lives in the Bronx with his wife, 3 children and extended family.
Chef David joined the Columbia Dining team in July 2012. David received a Bachelor’s Degree from Clark University in U.S. and East Asian History. He later decided to pursue his passion for food and attended Newbury College, where his received a degree in Culinary Arts & Food Service Management. He has spent the last 13 years working in corporate dining settings. David is eager and excited to bring his passion for food and commitment to quality service to the students of Columbia University.
Yanira joined the Columbia Dining team in November 2005 and has served on staff at John Jay, Café 212, and now Ferris Booth Commons. Prior to Columbia, Yanira worked in management at Restaurant Associates/Compass Group and also served as a Production Manager at a catering facility in the Bronx. She was also the Press Room Café Supervisor at Shea Stadium, where she became a Mets fan and had the opportunity to meet Omar Minaya. Yanira holds a Bachelor of Technology in Hospitality Management from New York City College of Technology.
Alex is a Brooklyn native who decided to go to culinary school after his first job in a catering hall. He has been in the hospitality business for 17 years and has held numerous restaurant positions. He has a culinary degree from New York Restaurant School, and after ten years of mostly corporate cooking, he decided to go back to school and earn his bachelors degree in Hospitality Management from New York City College of Technology. Alex loves the work he does and enjoys providing the best food and service.
Adebayo joined the Columbia University team in August 2010. He spent 14 years with NYU Dining, where he most recently served as the Food Service Director. During his tenure at NYU, he spearheaded the Annual Grad Alley event with over 20,000 attendees. Adebayo attended New York City Technical College where he studied Hotel and Hospitality Management. He’s a proud father of four children—two are in high school, and the elder two are in college.
Perry Lichter started cooking at the age of 16 in a candy shop on Coney Island, where he learned to temper chocolate, make caramel corn, and pull taffy to make salt water taffy. He graduated from the New York Food & Hotel Management School and worked in various Italian restaurants and bars, including Cavanaughs and McCann's Pub in Manhattan. Perry later moved to Florida and opened a Brooklyn Water Bagel Company store in Boynton Beach, where he worked for two years as kitchen manager. Returning home to New York, Perry is currently the Assistant Manager at JJ's.
John Jay Dining Hall
Tony Hall joined the Columbia Dining family in March of 2000, when he was named Production Manager of John Jay Hall. In 2007, he was promoted to General Manager. Tony boasts 25 years of experience in the food service industry, including time spent at NYU Law School, Downstate Medical Center, York College and Brooklyn College. He also worked in healthcare at The Madonna Residence, Gracie Square Hospital, Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center and Kateri Residence. A native New Yorker, Tony has an Associate’s Degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management from New York City Technical College.
Mario joined the Columbia team in 2011 as Production Manager for John Jay Dining Hall. Mario brings an extensive food industry resume with him. He spent 13 years working for Sodexo, progressing from Chef Manager at McKinsey to General Manager at Cigna Corporation. In 2006, Mario made the move to higher ed dining as Food Production Manager at Hunter College, followed by a position at NYU Kimmel Market as Food Production Manager.
Inspired by his family's pizza parlor in upstate NY, Joe always wanted to work in the Hospitality Service Industry. He became a dishwasher at 13 years old, where he was treated like family and learned everything he could about the kitchen. One day after work, he was asked if he could stay to help out in the Dining Room. He later became a waiter and a bar back. He attended The Culinary Institute of America, and just before graduation, he accepted a management position with Westchester Marriott Hotels. Throughout the years, Joe has worked in casual to high volume bar restaurants, including a dining room manager at the iconic " Tavern on The Green. " This is Joe's first year with Columbia Dining.
Heather is a chef by trade. Manager of Uris Deli, Carleton Lounge, and Lenfest Café, she joined Columbia University in 2008 as the assistant chef at the President’s House. She graduated from The French Culinary Institute in New York City, interned at Calhoun School, and worked as a chef manager with Sodexho at Merrill Lynch in NYC.