FS/TEC ’08 boasts slate of educational programs

FS/TEC ’08 boasts slate of educational programs

GRAPEVINE TEXAS —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

Not surprisingly, the operator-presenters at the heart of FS/TEC 2008 will represent concepts, chains and companies that can be as different as night from day. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

Also known as the International Foodservice Technology Exposition, FS/TEC is produced and managed by Nation’s Restaurant News and Robert N. Grimes of Accuvia. The 2008 edition at the Gaylord [3] Texan Resort and Convention Center in Grapevine, just outside of Dallas, marks the 13th running of the show and underscores its peer-to-peer informational underpinnings. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

A mix of nationalities, genders and corporate types will be evident in this year’s Chief Information Officer Panel, with participating CIOs addressing their recent projects as well as industry tech trends and anticipated challenges of the year ahead. Adding an international flavor to the session for 2008 will be panelist Przemyslaw Poppe, information technology director of AmRest Holding of Warsaw, Poland. AmRest is among the largest foodservice operators in central and eastern Europe, with more than 240 restaurants of various brands and types, including Burger King [4], KFC [5], Pizza Hut [6], Freshpoint and Rodeo Drive. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

Other CIO panel participants are Tamy Duplantis, vice president of IT for Potbelly Corp. of Chicago, parent of the Potbelly Sandwich Works [7] chain, and Debra Jensen, CIO of Jack in the Box [8] Inc. of San Diego. Rounding out the group will be David Kaufman, senior vice president and CIO of contract feeder Aramark Corp. [9] of Philadelphia, and Gary Trobaugh, vice president of business technology at Papa Murphy’s International [10] Inc. of Vancouver, Wash., operator and franchisor of the Papa Murphy’s Take ’N Bake Pizza chain. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

The CIO panel, which will be moderated by Grimes, is among the most popular presentations at FS/TEC, in part because it fields questions from the audience. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

Attendees’ questions also regularly enliven the annual Chief Executive Officer/Chief Operating Officer Panel, designed to give restaurant technologists additional insights into the overall tech objectives and wish lists of company leaders. Among the CEO/COO panelists will be Clay Dover, president and chief executive of Metromedia Restaurant Group [11] of Plano, Texas, operator and franchisor of Bennigan’s [12] Grill & Tavern, Steak and Ale [13], and Ponderosa [14] Steakhouse, among other concepts, and Charles Moran Jr., president and chief operating officer of Buffalo, N.Y.-based contract services firm Delaware North [15] Cos. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

Though they share Texas as their headquarters state, the operators on the digital menu board and mobile ordering panel come from companies fielding from one to more than 60 units and offering everything from tacos to tikka. On that panel is Jim Bodenstedt, chief operating officer for R&L Foods Inc. of San Antonio, a franchisee of Yum! Brands Inc., with dozens of KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell and combined-brand stores. Joining him will be Robert Andersen, president of Mooyah Burgers Inc. of Plano, parent of three-unit Mooyah Burgers & Fries, and Mark Brezinski, founder of Bengal Coast [16] Restaurants LP, Dallas-based operator of a fast-casual concept selling foods from “The Other Asia,” including India, Malaysia and Thailand. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

The initial recruits for the green IT session include Joseph Youssef, director of supplier management for McDonald’s [17] Corp. of Oak Brook, Ill., and professional IT watcher Don Tennant, editorial director of Computerworld and InfoWorld of Framingham, Mass. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

Even before the panel has been filled, the “All Aboard: Aligning Your Franchisees with Your Tech Strategies” session can claim two executive participants whose chains include a combined total of nearly 5,000 franchised restaurants. Signed up for the panel, to date, are Scott Bleau, IT director of Qdoba Mexican Grill [18] of Wheat Ridge, Colo., and Robert Whittington, senior vice president and CIO of Wendy’s International Inc. of Dublin, Ohio. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

Lou Grande, vice president of IT for Rare Hospitality International [19] Inc., operator of Longhorn Steak-house and The Capital Grille [20], is moderating “Measuring & Lowering POS Total Cost of Ownership.” Offering up some insights during that exercise will be Jeff Gengler, vice president of IT for Rock Bottom Restaurants Inc. [21] of Louisville, Colo. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

“Spreading the News: Trends in Business Intelligence Tech & Dashboard Building” will be moderated by Jeff Chasney, executive vice president of strategic planning and CIO for CKE [22] Restaurants Inc. of Carpinteria, Calif., parent of the Hardee’s [23] and Carl’s Jr. [24] chains. Also participating is Steve Brooks, director of mission control for Tumbleweed Inc. of Louisville, Ky., parent of the Tumbleweed Southwest Grill casual-dining chain. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

Among the other educational presentations planned for FS/TEC and operators involved with them: —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

“Payment Card Data—Protection Strategies from the Trenches,” with Jack Baum, chairman and chief executive of Food, Friends and Company of Dallas, operator of 13 full-service restaurants, including nine Cozymel’s Mexican Grills; and Patrick Piccininno, vice president of IT for IHOP Corp. [25] of Glendale, Calif., parent of IHOP and Applebee’s [26] Neighborhood Grill & Bar. Tracy Libertino, Accuvia’s managing director of consulting, will moderate. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

“Tech Tools for District [27] Managers: What’s Working, What’s Needed?” with Cyrus Mokhtari, franchise area director for Galardi Group of Newport Beach, Calif., parent of Wienerschnitzel and Hamburger Stand; and Michael Taylor, senior director of operations, western division, for Carlson Restaurants Worldwide [28] of Carrollton, Texas, parent of T.G.I. Friday’s [29] and Pick Up Stix [30]. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

“Winning Strategies from FS/TEC & Nation’s Restaurant News Technology Award Winners,” with Chris Duncan, vice president of administration for Hooters of America [31] Inc. of Atlanta; Kevin [32] Fritton, vice president of operations for eLanes LLC of Andover, Mass., a Wendy’s franchisee, among other businesses; and Betty Ann Stephenson, director of hospitality for Scottsdale Healthcare of Scottsdale, Ariz. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

“Using Online Social Networking for Your Business,” with Arie Ball, vice president of sourcing and talent acquisition for Sodexho [33] USA of Gaithersburg, Md. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

“Marketing and Culinary Pros—The Technologies They Need,” with Mike Plunkett, senior vice president of purchasing and international operations for Dave & Busters Inc. of Dallas. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

“Best Practices in Capturing Online Orders & Finding Support Vendors,” with Hanie Hartman, Web development/project manager for Buca Inc. [34] of Minneapolis, operator of Buca di Beppo [35]; and Brad Williams, senior franchise business consultant for Wingstop Restaurants Inc. of Richardson, Texas. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

“The Human Condition—What’s Up with HR Tech,” with Michael Everett, vice president of information services for Frisch’s Restaurants Inc. [36] of Cincinnati; and Trecia Wood, manager of learning systems for Carlson Restaurants Worldwide. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

Scheduled among all of the peer-to-peer information exchanges involving restaurant operators is the annual Technology Executives Panel, where representatives from leading supplier organizations talk about current and future developments in their world and how they might impact restaurateurs. Among the panelists will be Paul Armstrong, chief technology officer for Micros Systems Inc. of Columbia, Md.; Paul Langenbahn, president of the hospitality division of Radiant Systems Inc. of Alpharetta, Ga.; Tom Litchford, industry solution director for Microsoft Corp. of Redmond, Wash.; and Karen Sammon, president of software solutions for PAR of New Hartford, N.Y. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”

Besides educational sessions, keynote speeches and evening networking receptions, FS/TEC 2008 will feature more than 150 exhibitors. Additional information about FS/TEC is available at www.fstec.com. —The educational program of the foodservice industry’s leading technology conference, FS/TEC, will run here April 16-19 and cover issues as diverse as “Putting the ‘Green’ in IT” and “Digital Menu Boards & Mobile Ordering: Lots of Talk, but Where’s the Action?”