The Culinary Institute of America

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Spotlight On: Greg Drescher

Vice President—Strategic Initiatives and Industry Leadership

Greg Drescher is vice president of strategic initiatives and industry leadership at The Culinary Institute of America (CIA), where he oversees the college’s leadership programs for the foodservice industry, including conferences, invitational leadership retreats, digital media, and strategic partnerships.

Mr. Drescher is the creator of the college’s influential Worlds of Flavor International Conference & Festival, the annual Worlds of Healthy Flavors and Menus of Change leadership conferences (presented in partnership with the Harvard School of Public Health’s Department of Nutrition), the Healthy Menus R&D Collaborative, and numerous other CIA “think tank” initiatives.

In 2005, Mr. Drescher was inducted into the James Beard Foundation’s Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America. The following year, he was honored with Food Arts magazine’s Silver Spoon Award. He shared James Beard Awards in 2007 and 2009 for his work in developing the CIA’s “Savoring the Best of World Flavors” webcast series, filmed on location in food cultures around the world.

In 2008, he was appointed by the president of the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine to its “Committee on Strategies to Reduce Sodium Intake,” whose final report was published in 2010.

Before joining the CIA in 1995 as the director of education at the college’s Greystone campus in California’s Napa Valley, Mr. Drescher jointly spearheaded a multi-year collaboration of some of the world’s leading health experts and organizations—including the Harvard School of Public Health and the World Health Organization—in researching and authoring “The Mediterranean Diet Pyramid: A Cultural Model for Healthy Eating.” The cumulative results of this research were published in a special edition of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, creating a strong platform for much of the academic, public policy, and media interest in the Mediterranean diet that followed.

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