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The Best Never Rest

Members from the Riverside Dining Facility celebrate outside of the RDF as they prepare for the Hennessy selection in 2018.

PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- “The Best Never Rest” is not just the 45th Force Support Squadron’s motto, it’s the ticket to success in Air Force Food Service Operations.

For the third consecutive year, the 45th Space Wing is a top contender for the Air Force’s prestigious John L. Hennessy Award for excellence in Air Force Food Service, and we plan on bringing the trophy here again! This year our food service professionals worked hard to champion their way through a category 4 hurricane, made innovations in food operations and made customer satisfaction their highest priority.

On Feb. 12, the Hennessy Award evaluators will be reviewing food service operations on Patrick Air Force Base. The team consists of four highly respected (military and civilian) experts in the food service industry: Chief Master Sgt. Donald Cleveland, Master Sgt. Aaron Edwards, Bernadette Ventura, Senior Manager at Health Care Service Corporation; and Carmen Valcalebre, owner/operator of Carmen Anthony Restaurant Group. As one of 18 bases in the Air Force to operate under a food service contract, evaluators will judge the Riverside Dining Facility against both traditional and contracted food operations.

In determining the best food operations, evaluators will review: management effectiveness, force readiness, and food quality. In 2017, the 45 FSS achieved a 98% customer satisfaction rating, the best in the Air Force for three years running.

“It’s clear we’re doing something right, our success is best reflected in our customer service and satisfaction,” said Lt. Col. Chong H. Gregory, 45 FSS Commander.

Our food service professionals take great pride in their ability to provide the ultimate dining experience. Whether it’s an Airman, a retiree, or a civilian on base, the Riverside Dining Facility isn’t just a place to eat; it’s a conduit for comradery and community to flourish. In 2017, Patrick AFB’s food service operations served more than 250K customers.

"My favorite thing about the Patrick AFB dining facility is how they have continually improved, since I’ve been here,” said Airman 1st Class Jordan King. “Being an Airman living in the dorms for over a year, I really appreciate how the RDF always keeps things fresh with new meal options and exciting additions, like the smoothie machines and the awesome pizza bar."

“We truly understand what it means to work hard and serve our community. Not only do we constantly strive to improve our operations but we’re there when it counts,” said Gregory. “We faced two Cat 4 hurricanes last fiscal year, yet we’re operating stronger and more effectively than ever. We are extremely honored and excited to host the Hennessy Evaluation team, and to show them, the best truly never rests.”