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November 2013

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Brinker Collection
Honoring an Icon: The Norman E. Brinker Archival Collection
Family, friends and business associates of the late Norman E. Brinker gathered at Hilton College on Oct. 22 for the grand opening of a new exhibit honoring the iconic restaurateur and entrepreneur. Throughout his accomplished life and career, Brinker created the casual-dining concept, influenced more than 56 national and international brands and mentored literally hundreds of successful foodservice leaders. To honor his legacy and inspire future leaders of the hospitality industry, Brinker’s family generously donated his personal papers and other memorabilia to the Hospitality Industry Archives. The Brinker Collection is now the second-largest in the Archives, after the Hilton family collection. Housed in the College’s Massad Family Library Research Center, the Archives were created to preserve the history of the industry and its leading companies, and to promote the legacies of its most storied leaders. Pictured left to right at the exhibit opening and fundraising event are Cindy Brinker Simmons, Toni Brinker, Brenda Brinker Bottum and Eric Brinker. The Brinker Collection is currently on display in the Hospitality Industry Hall of Honor—located off the lobby of the Hilton University of Houston—where it will remain until the spring of 2014. Special thanks to the Brinker family for sharing this inspirational collection! (Photo: Taylor Wiley)
Chef Danny Jacob
Chef Danny Jacob Takes Charge at Brasserie 19
It didn’t take long for Chef Danny Jacob (MS ’10) to move up the ranks in the restaurant world. Just three years after earning his master’s from Hilton College, he’s already a lead chef at Brasserie 19—a River Oaks hot spot specializing in Gulf-inspired French cuisine. Chef Danny says he grew up cooking, but he got his start in a professional kitchen after getting a business degree from Southwestern. He learned the ropes as a fry cook in San Antonio, spent a little time abroad and eventually decided to enroll at Hilton College, so he could learn about the management side of the restaurant industry. Turns out, it was the perfect fit. Chef Danny worked as a graduate assistant in Barron’s—the College’s student-run restaurant—and served as the banquet chef for Gourmet Night 2010, honing valuable management skills and—above all—perfecting the art of “patience under pressure.” After graduation, he took a job with a catering company, and when Brasserie 19 opened its doors in May 2011, he was hired as a pantry cook. He quickly worked his way up the ranks to sous chef, and in March 2013, he became a lead chef. His advice for those who want to pursue a similar career track? Get in the kitchen! “When it comes to cooking, culinary school will teach you how to do it, but restaurant training will teach you how to do it faster. It’s a different world—it’s intense. You have to love it and be able to keep up with the stress and the lifestyle. Learn the business from the inside,” he said. As for the next step in his career, Chef Danny says he’d like to open up his own restaurant. We can’t wait for that! Chef Danny Jacob—you make Hilton College proud! (Photo: Taylor Wiley)
HFTP research gift
Gift Funds Trailblazing Study on Technology in Private Clubs
Drs. Cristian Morosan and Agnes DeFranco are about to embark on a trailblazing study on the use of mobile technologies in private clubs, thanks to a $10,000 research gift from Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals International. The duo plans to conduct a nationwide survey of about 700 club members, asking how they use mobile technologies—such as smartphones and tablets—in their clubs, and what they anticipate the role of those technologies will be in the future. Currently, there’s plenty of existing research on technology in hotels, but nothing about private clubs. Morosan and DeFranco hope to fill that gap with this project, uncovering valuable data on the future of the private club industry. Interesting work! (Photo: Taylor Wiley)
Dave Smalley
Welcome to the Club, Dave!
The Eric Hilton Distinguished Alumni Club is proud to welcome its newest member, Dave Smalley (’79). Smalley is the founder and CEO of Spectrum Catering, Concessions & Events—the largest hospitality company of its kind in North America. Based in The Woodlands, Texas, Spectrum’s client list includes such worldwide brands as Cirque du Soleil, The PGA Tour, the NFL and Live Nation Entertainment. Spectrum is the industry leader in artist- and tour-catering for major music festivals like Bonnarro and ACL, and for big-name acts like Mumford and Sons and The Dave Matthews Band. In addition, Spectrum also owns more than two dozen Broadway and music venues. On Nov. 7, Smalley returned to Hilton College as the featured speaker for the 25th Annual Eric Hilton Distinguished Chair Alumni Lecture Series. The lecture series was established in 1999 by Dr. Clinton L. Rappole, with the goal of bringing accomplished alumni back into the classroom to discuss their career paths with students. After his lecture, Smalley (pictured sitting center), was presented with an Eric's Club chair by fellow club members. Pictured standing left to right are Marsha Hendler (’73), Mary Beth Moehring (‘80), Al Gallo ('82), Dr. Rappole, Steve Goodman ('83), Ricki Oberoi ('86), Dorothy Nicholson ('77), Bob Cowan (’76), Jeremy Wladis (’86), Clare Sullivan Jackson (’85), Charles Dorn (‘80), Gregg Rockett (’86), Jonathan Shear (’80), Dean John Bowen and Bob Planck (’71). Congrats, Dave, and welcome to the club! (Photo: Michael Scott)
Michael and David Cordua
Cordúas Share Success Story at Hilton College
It’s not every day that hospitality students get the chance to meet with the likes of Michael and David Cordúa. So when the father-son chefs came to the College for the Erik J. Worscheh Lecture Series on Nov. 13, they spoke in front of a packed and enthusiastic house. Few families have impacted Houston’s restaurant scene like the Cordúas. Michael Cordúa is co-owner and executive chef at seven award-winning Houston-area restaurants, including Amazón Grill, Américas Post Oak, Américas Woodlands, Américas River Oaks, Artista, Churrascos River Oaks and Churrascos Westchase. David—a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu in Paris—is Cordúa Restaurants’ executive chef of development, overseeing menus, recipes and quality for all seven restaurants and the Cordúas’ catering and events company. In appreciation for their support of the College, a $1,000 scholarship in the Cordúa name will be awarded to a student in 2014. The Worscheh Lecture Series was established in 2009 to honor Erik Worscheh, a well-loved club executive and integral supporter of the College. The speakers are chosen for their leadership in the private club and/or food & beverage industries. (Photo: Taylor Wiley)