Ready Before We Are – Semper Fi

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Ready Before We Are – Semper Fi

By: Deborah Roberts
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Focusing on health is the most meaningful way that dining services can impact readiness & resilience @sodexoUSA #USMC

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Deborah Roberts, CEO, Government Services, Sodexo North America

Wednesday, April 26, 2017 - 3:15pm


Sixty-four years ago, Congress declared that “The Marine Corps must be the most ready when the nation is generally least ready.” The years since have seen that proven out many times over. Marines are the first to respond in times of crisis all over the world, and their excellence is legendary. In 2016 alone, the U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) executed approximately 185 operations, 140 security cooperation events with our partners and allies, and 65 major exercises.

Readiness has many components, but, ultimately, the health and fitness of every Marine is the core of the Corps. Gen. Glenn M. Walters, Assistant Commandant of the Marine Corps told Congress, “Unit readiness is always our most immediate concern. Cohesive unit teams are the instruments that accomplish national security objectives, and we must ensure our ability to successfully accomplish any mission when called.”

As the mother of a Marine, I know firsthand what it takes to be at their best every day and how critical their quality of life is to the Corps and our nation. Providing great dining services for today’s warriors means giving Marines more flexibility and control over when, where and what they eat.

Focusing on health is the most meaningful way that dining services can impact readiness and resilience. In offering  delicious, healthy choices—and a wide variety of them— Marines can select the food that makes them feel fit and ready. That means being able to accommodate those with food allergies and dietary restrictions, as well as cater to a variety of palates. In short, dining services must offer a wide variety of healthy and delicious choices that keep them fit and ready.

Another important part of this commitment is offering training and personal growth for military cooks. Customizable training programs can meet the needs of Marine Corps cooks, develop their skills, and equip them to transition to civilian life in the future. These programs aim to improve mission readiness and support their personal growth.

Sodexo is proud to serve 49 USMC bases across the U.S., and we strive to ensure that we do everything possible to promote Marines’ well-being and military readiness. Mess Hall 227 at Marine Corps Camp Lejeune in North Carolina is proud to do its part to improve Quality of Life for our servicemen and women. The operations team recently learned it was selected as the 2017 winner of the Best Full Food Service Mess Hall category in the annual W.P.T. Hill Memorial Awards for Foodservice Excellence. This prestigious award is an annual Marine Corps-wide competition among USMC installations around the globe. Competitors are judged on areas such as operations, sanitation, taste and quality of food.

Mess Hall 227’s recognition for outstanding service tells us that our efforts to support military Quality of Life are on point. We are very proud of this team’s accomplishments and proud to support it through ongoing training that furthers professional development. Our mission is to support unit readiness and we are honored to work hard every day to fulfill it.

Keywords: Awards, Ratings & Rankings | Food Safety | Good Health and Well-Being | Health & Healthcare | Nutrition | Sodexo | USMC | United States Marine Corps | W.P.T. Hill Memorial Awards | Wellness | health and fitness