Rafi Taherian is the executive director for Yale Dining, a multifaceted organization, comprised of residential dining, retail dining, graduate student dining, campus vending, executive dining services, catering, and summer conferences. His primary responsibilities include the strategic planning and support to a management team of approximately 58 managers, which ensure the delivery of over 14,000 meals per day. Yale Dining is recognized for its leadership in sustainability in food service and has received numerous national recognitions for its innovations in program, facility design and concept development. Delivering excellence in the overall dining experience through innovative customer driven concepts, while addressing sustainability and environmental concerns has been Rafi’s career long passion. He believes that excellence is practiced and delivered through a customer centric organizational culture, ongoing innovation, investment in people and forming win-win partnerships. Rafi prides himself in accomplishing these goals practicing the fundamentals of productivity, efficiency and fiscal responsibility for Yale University and most enjoys having the opportunity to work with some of the best leaders and strategic thinkers in the industry. His management team provides the university with decisive, collaborative, goal-oriented leadership that fuels productivity, practical business solutions and innovative visions for future growth. In conjunction with the Culinary Institute of America and Harvard School of Public Healthy, Rafi serves on the board of The Menus of Change Initiative as well serving on several industry advisory groups and councils. Rafi has received numerous national recognitions including the “Ivy Award”, “Acterra Award”and NACUFS Presidents Award. In 2013 Rafi was selected as the Food Service Director of Year by FSD magazine and received the “Illuminating Excellence Award” by Premiere Management for his accomplishments and improvements in foodservice operations.