A Holistic approach to food safety and quality consulting
Gina (Nicholson) Kramer
Gina (Nicholson) Kramer, RS/REHS is the Executive Director of Savour Food Safety International, Inc.™ where she specializes in assisting companies in developing long-term food safety culture and behavior change programs starting with the top to the front line employee. She also specializes in internal and external food safety communication plans during times of crisis for food companies. She has developed a mentorship program for food safety professionals coaching them how to build a program that is a profit center not a cost center for their company. Gina works with companies on new products and technologies from ideation to commercialization that focuses on “improving food safety one GREAT idea at a time”. Miss Gina, formerly the Global Director of Retail Food Services for NSF International, lead NSF’s team of talented retail food safety experts for 3rd party auditing, consulting and technical services for major global retail brands such as Sodexo, HMS Host, T.G.I. Friday’s and Jack in the Box.
As an owner and operator of her own organic bakery, to Manager of Public Health Promotions and a Registered Sanitarian at the Columbus Public Health Department, to her role as Senior Manager of Food Safety & Quality at The Kroger Co., to Global Director of Retail Food Services at NSF International, Gina (Nicholson) Kramer has spread her knowledge and innovative approach of food safety to organizations small and large.
Gina’s skill in food safety education, training and systems development has already helped other national retailer’s to build ambitious perishable food process improvement projects focused on food safety & quality and successfully establish a food safety culture that now permeates these organizations.
In addition to her new role as Executive Director, she is also a very active member of several food safety committees including STOP Foodborne Illness Chair of the Board of Directors, as well as several committees with the Conference for Food Protection, the International Association for Food Protection (she is chair of the Retail Foodservice PDG) and a member of the Education Advisory Board for the Food Safety Summit and the Food Safety Consortium. She is also an active contributor and member of the Food Safety Magazine and Food Safety Tech’s Editorial Advisory Board.
Gina has presented at several state, national and international conferences on topics such as: Measuring Food Safety Success; The Cost of a Food Event; Food Trends that Impact Food Safety; Branding Your Food Safety Message; Selling Food Safety from the Top Down; Creating a Food Safety Culture within the Real World of Retail Foods; 5 Terrific Training Tools; Consumer Education – It takes a partnership; Be Food Safe Participation - from a National Supermarket’s perspective; A Deep Dive into Cold Chain Management; and Translating HACCP to Lean Six Sigma – How to speak the language of the business to build a robust Food Safety program.
Gina attended Ohio-based Ashland University where she obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Human Biology. She is also a Registered Sanitarian in the state of Ohio and a Registered Environmental Health Specialist through the National Environmental Health Association. She has also continued her education through completing courses for; Preventive Controls Qualified Individual – Human Food (PCQI), and ServSafe® Food Protection Manager.
Bob Kramer, former Supervisor of Food Safety for Columbus Public Health Department, is now the Director of Food Services and Food Safety for the Economic and Community Development Institute (ECDI) and the Vice President of Savour Food Safety International, Inc.
Upon retirement, Kramer had over 32 years of dedicated service to the City of Columbus, serving as Supervisor of the Food Safety program for 12 years. As Director of Food Services and Food Safety at ECDI for the past 4 years, he leads programming related to the incubation of food-based businesses. This includes the development of food safety training curriculum, HACCP plans as well as a licensed food cart/food truck commissary and commercial kitchen in conjunction with ECDI’s Growing Entrepreneurs Initiative.
Bob Kramer actively participates in several committees and councils, Old Worthington Business Association, Old Worthington Farmer’s Market Committee, Central Ohio Food Truck Association and the Political Action Committee for the Ohio Restaurant Association assisting local Food Entrepreneurs in Ohio. Through his participation, he brought together local food restaurateurs and local food truck/cart operators to collectively change city ordinance allowing food truck/cart owners to operate for business on selected areas of city property.
Kramer is also an active member of the International Association for Food Protection (IAFP), Ohio Association for Food Protection (OAFP), National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) and the Conference for Food Protection (CFP). He is a Registered Sanitarian in the state of Ohio and holds his Registered Environmental Health Specialist certification through the National Environmental Health Association. He has also continued his education through completing courses for; Preventive Controls Qualified Individual – Human Food (PCQI), HACCP Manager, and ServSafe® Food Protection Manager.
Barb Hunt comes to Savour Food Safety International, Inc. with over 30 years of food safety experience. She is Director of Food Safety and Quality. Early in her career, Barb worked in several food and water testing laboratories, as a technologist performing cultural techniques for indicator and pathogenic food and water-borne organisms. From 1995 to mid-2016 she was a member of Wendy’s International Quality Assurance team. During her time at Wendy’s, she conducted hundreds of food safety audits in Wendy’s and Baja Fresh restaurants. She also provided food safety education to company and franchisee operators.
Ms. Hunt participated in cooperative efforts between local & state regulators and Wendy’s stores to promote and facilitate food safety. Barb has product development experience with cultured dairy products. She attended Conference for Food Protection meetings and co-chaired the local arrangements committee for the 2006 meeting held in Columbus, Ohio.
She has conducted hundreds of food safety and product compliance audits at manufacturing facilities and distribution centers. Barb partnered with the Research & Development team on new product development, specification writing, product evaluation (including sensory evaluation), new supplier approval and commercialization. She partnered with outside laboratories on product evaluation to determine level of compliance to specified parameters and developed sampling and product evaluation protocols. She worked with the supply chain team, making decisions on vetting supplier facilities, second sourcing, cold chain monitoring and distribution challenges.
Barb attended Capital University, earning her BA in Biology, with a minor in Spanish. She has also continued her education through completing courses for; Preventive Controls Qualified Individual – Human Food (PCQI), NEHA HACCP Manager, ServSafe® and SQFI Practitioner. Ms. Hunt is an FSPCA Lead Instructor for Preventive Controls Qualified Individual Human Food.
Rochelly Serrano is a forward thinking and innovative Quality Assurance Leader with over 25 years of experience in the food safety/quality assurance industry, extending from "farm to fork”. Rochelly is experienced in many areas including: food manufacturing, retail, warehouse, food service, and distribution. She is knowledgeable with FDA, USDA, and State regulatory policies and requirements. She is also proficient at site construction review, menu development, sanitation, store inspections, auditing interventions, training, and vendor relations. She is driven to achieve results and exceed expectations in any food safety and quality assurance task presented.
Rochelly has a B.S. in Animal Science from Missouri State University and an M.S in Food Safety from Michigan State University. She obtained a Certificate of Food Safety Laws From Michigan State University which covers: International Food Safety Laws; U.S., Canada, Asia, and Europe. She is experienced in implementing SQF Programs. She is an SQF Auditor and Advanced SQF Practitioner. She is in the process of obtaining SQF Lead Auditor.
Elise Forward has over 15 years of Food Safety, Quality, and Regulatory experience in both the international and domestic food markets. She has worked in laboratory and production settings, and has 10+ years’ experience managing the food safety programs of an international importer and distributor. She was President & Principal Consultant for Forward Food Solutions, Quality Assurance Manager for Ciranda, Inc., and Quality Assurance Supervisor for Northern Star Company. She was also a Chemist/ Lab Technician for Joseph Campbell Company. She has a BA in Biology from Wartburg College.
Ms. Forward is an FSPCA Lead Instructor for Preventive Controls Qualified Individual Human Food, NSF Certified HAACP Manager, and Certified Quality Auditor through the American Society for Quality. Elise is experienced in leading companies through Organic, Gluten Free, Kosher, Halal, Non GMO Project Verifications/Certifications. She is a member of the American Society for Quality, International Association for Food Protection, and the Institute of Food Technologists.
Rod Wheeler, “Washington DC’s All Star Homicide Detective” and “No Stranger to the Community”, are just two of the many ways Criminal Investigator and Crime Analyst Rod Wheeler has been described throughout his career.
Rod is the Founder of The Global Food Defense Institute, which serves the food, agricultural and chemical industry in protecting products against intentional, deliberate acts of tampering and adulteration as well as assisting companies protect their assets and employee safety procedures.
Previously, Rod has served as the Homeland Security, Food Defense Subject Matter Expert for AIB International. In that capacity, he developed and conducted numerous training and educational programs for the food, agricultural and chemical industry to protect products from intentional contamination and adulteration. As the former Director of the Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness with the Food Products Association in Washington DC, Rod created and developed an entire series of Homeland Security & Defense programs, to support many food processing, manufacturing and retail corporations in developing and implementing food safety, facility safety and security plans, procedures, guidelines and food tampering investigations. Rod was also appointed and served as the Secretariat of the Food and Agricultural Coordinating Council, which consist of high level Federal and State Government officials as well as senior food industry sector representatives that focuses primarily on implementing emergency preparedness strategies for the protection of the food infrastructure in the United States. Rod have conducted nearly 500 Physical Security Vulnerability Assessments and have written dozens of Security Response and Crisis Management plans for corporations large and small. Additionally, Rod has conducted numerous investigations surrounding asset loss, safety and health investigations, and product tampering/sabotage incidents.
With a BA degree in Criminology/Criminal Justice from The Ohio State University, and a Key Executive Masters Degree in Public Administration (MPA) from American University in Washington DC, Rod has remained active around the United States speaking to several organizations on crime related issues, as well as advising and consulting on many major high-profile cases of national interest such as the Sniper Shootings in Washington DC, the Virginia Tech Shooting Massacre, the Washington Navy Yard shooting, the Newtown School shooting, as well as several other major high profile cases of national interest. Rod has also completed high level training in Terrorism Identification and Response and Workplace Violence from the esteemed Brookings Institute in Washington DC. His expertise is also in Responding to and Preventing Active Shooter Situations in the workplace.
Rod is a nationally recognized expert in criminal investigation, law enforcement, Food Defense (FSMA) and a motivational speaker. Rod is an active member of the American Society of Criminology, Association of Contingency Planning, National Association of Crime Analyst, National Blacks in Criminal Justice Association, The National Association of Investigative Specialist, The American Society of Law Enforcement Trainers, The International Public Safety Association and the past chairman of the Food Defense Security Council of the American Society of Industrial Security (ASIS).
Rod has assisted dozens of US Based Company’s develop Global Security Plans and Procedures and training on these procedures. Recent clients consist of Starbucks, PepsiCo, RJ Reynolds Tobacco, Frito-Lay, ConAgra, Lifeline Foods and others. In 2010 Rod was presented with a high-level honor from the United States Army Veterinary service for providing guidance and training to over 200 military personnel for assisting the US Military develop Food Defense programs and guidelines for its vendors, suppliers and military bases around the world.
Rod resides in the greater Washington DC area and is a proud member at the Ebenezer AME church.
Patty Wynkoop is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian Nutritionist with over 35 years of nutrition experience, ranging from clinical to manufacturing to food service. She also has extensive experience in product development, product commercialization, quality assurance and food safety planning, and regulatory compliance for US and Canada.
In her 26 years with Wendy’s International, Patty was responsible for directing Research & Development, Commercialization, Quality Assurance, and Technical Services teams. Her expertise in the area of nutrition and regulatory compliance made her a valuable member of the issues management teams for Legal, Communications, and Marketing. She was instrumental in the successful launches of numerous new products and operational procedures. In 2015, she lead a cross functional team in developing the initial implementation plan for menu calorie labeling for over 5,000 Wendy’s restaurants in US, Canada, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands. She also developed protocols for updating and maintaining the nutrition, ingredient, and allergen databases for both domestic and international menu items.Patty earned her BS in Dietetics at The Ohio State University. She is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) and has served on the National Restaurant Association’s Nutrition Executive Study Group. She has also completed courses and training in US and Canadian nutrition, ingredient, and allergen labeling, food allergen and gluten free compliance, restaurant menu calorie labeling, HACCP planning, ServSafe®, and Preventive Controls Qualified Individual – Human Food (PCQI).
Tara Riley is a Director of Food Safety and Quality at Savour Food Safety International. Born in Norwalk, Ohio, home of the Norovirus, she moved to Columbus in 2008 to study Food Science and Technology at The Ohio State University. Her 5+ years of experience began at Silliker (now Merieux Nutrsciences) as a Lab Technician, but lies extensively in plant QA and R&D for Nature’s One where she worked with Organic dairy products.
In addition, Tara has completed courses in PCQI: Human Food, HACCP, and SQF Post-Farm Gate). She is a member of the Institute of Food Technologists and the International Association for Food Protection.
Passionate about food, Tara believes in collaboration and transparency in the food industry from farm to fork and using sound science to solve today’s food industry problems.
Michelle Gregg is the Lead Auditor of Code One Compliance in New Albany, OH. Code One advises farms, food processing, and food handling companies in developing and implementing regulation plans for USDA NOP (organic), USDA Grass-fed, HACCP food safety in meat facilities, Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) on farms, EPA Compost site development, and others. Code One also conducts third party audits, and partners with companies to develop compliance strategies prior to introducing products to the market.
Michelle brings 15 years of experience in federal and state regulation as an auditor and business owner, previously managing a poultry slaughter house, mobile slaughter unit, organic grain mill, and a livestock farm. She brings an eye for financial sustainability with previous work as an Executive Director for a Netherlands-based crop testing laboratory, and VP of Research and Development for a US fertilizer company. She seeks creative options that make the most of companies’ bottom lines and potential for market growth while maintaining regulatory compliance.
Linda Bernard, QA & Food Safety SME with Savour Food Safety International, has over 30 years of experience in the food industry working with both Consumer Packaged Goods at The Borden Company as well as Quick Service Restaurants at The Wendy’s Company. She is a highly skilled performance driven professional specializing in R&D, Commercialization and Quality Assurance. Her strengths include cross-functional communication and collaboration (Marketing, Quality Assurance, Supply Chain, Sensory, Operations and Training) along with being an inspirational mentor and visionary. Linda has developed new menu products from inception through commercialization for Market Testing and National Launches, with additional experience in Cost Savings and Clean Label initiatives. Linda has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Food Science & Technology from The Ohio State University. She has also completed courses in ServSafe® and Preventive Controls Qualified Individual – Human Food (PCQI) and Food Defense.
Marlene Moore is Supply Chain Coordinator at Savour Food Safety International. Marlene specializes in improving the environment and human health by increasing the overall performance of sustainability and focusing on life cycle assessments within the supply chain. Marlene graduated from The Ohio State University with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental and Natural Resources, majoring in Environment, Economy, Development and Sustainable Business. She is an active individual with a strong passion for the outdoors.
Beth Thibault has over 20 years of experience in the food industry. Before joining Savour Food Safety International, Inc., Beth work with Wendy’s International, Silliker and Dole Packaged Foods. Her strengths include commercialization of new products into market test and national launch, collaboration with Marketing to develop new menu items from concept to roll out, working with sensory team to execute sensory testing plan, partnering with Quality Assurance and suppliers to establish new product specifications and product testing parameters, and collaboration with Operations to create restaurant procedures and protocol for new products. Beth has completed the FSPCA PCQI – Human Food course and has a B.S. in Dietetics and Food Administration and an M.S. in Food Science.
Yoseline Torres is an outstanding professional with a diverse background. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin in Madison with a degree in Food Science, International Agriculture and Natural Resources. Torres has held a variety of leadership roles with companies such as Nestlé Puerto Rico, Inc., Walt Disney World, Planet Hollywood International, Raw Juce, Pepsi Latin America Beverages, and PepsiCo North America among others.
Her management capabilities, technical, public speaking and communication skills have equipped her to effectively work with diverse teams such as Engineering, Supply Chain, Manufacturing, Regulatory Affairs, Operations, Sales, and Human Resources. It has also allowed her to occupy several high responsibility roles to include Quality Control/Assurance Manager, Production Manager, Regional Manager, Distribution Service Manager, Food Safety & Public Health Manager, Director of Food Safety & Quality Assurance, and Director of Operations within the food industry.
In these roles, she has developed a broad base of expertise in areas such as risk assessment and mitigation, development and implementation of food safety programs and strategies, training, process improvement, a variety of audits and inspections, and most recently in FSMA related matters.
Yoseline is Food Safety Manager Certified and a registered Test Administrator/Proctor with the National Registry of Food Safety Professionals. She holds a HACCP certification from the International HACCP Alliance as well as train-the trainer to teach HACCP. Additionally, Yoseline is FSMA PCQI Level II trained by the FSPCA, and she is an approved Human Food Instructor applicant/candidate.
During her free time, Yoseline enjoys doing outdoor sports with her 13-year-old son, and attending her kickboxing and yoga classes. Yoseline also stays active as a Women Mentor at her local church and volunteering her time locally and abroad serving communities in need.
Yolanda Nunez is Director of Human Resources at Savour Food Safety International. She has a degres in HR Management/Personnel Administration from Lourdes University. Yolanda has an extensive background in HR functions, including experience in employee recruitment, staff development, employment relations, benefits and HR records management. She has coordinated the HR link between various departments, developed teambuilding programs, job descriptions and management reports.
In addition, she has directed new employee orientation packages and gathered company benefit information and assisted with worker's compensation claims and FMLA requests.
Yolanda has worked in HR for Tropical Foods (Tropical Nut & Fruit), Hollywood Gaming, and The Anderson's and is available to assist companies with their HR needs.
Jamie Allen is Savour Food Safety International’s Food Defense Expert.
Jamie's previous work experience includes working for Pelton & Crane as a Design Engineer/Department Lead. With her design engineering background comes an understanding and expert focus on safety and quality. She has experience in creating sanitary conditions in an engineering capacity.
Jamie believes in producing work where quality, safety, and functionality can all come together to create superior products and she brings this lens to all her Food Defense work for Savour. Ms. Allen has years of auditing experience that have given her a critical eye to identify vulnerabilities for continuous improvement opportunities within a company in order to to ensure security and safety.
She has an Associates Degree in Computer Aided Design (CAD) Systems Management and a Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial and Engineering Management from University of North Carolina (UNC) where she also played on the UNC women’s basketball team. Jamie loves being part of a team and fully believes teamwork plays a significant, positive role within the workplace.