• Serving independent schools and colleges with since 1990


There are many dining contractors out there — some smaller and some much, much larger. We like to think we're the right size to offer the experience and efficiencies you need, as well as the personal attention and support you may not be accustomed to receiving.

When we come to your school and take stock of the situation in your dining hall — the challenges and the opportunities — we bring our best practices to bear to raise the bar for you. But that's only part of the equation.

We take the time to understand your school community, your tastes and preferences.

We work with you to develop a food program that meets your community's culinary, nutritional and social needs, and that does so within a reasonable budget.

How are we able to do this? It starts with hiring an incredibly talented and committed work force, individuals who are passionate about food and dedicated to pleasing the customer.

We maintain the highest standards of integrity throughout our company, from accounting to purchasing to marketing. And we never waver from our focus on serving great-tasting, wholesome food.

Financial Transparency

Trust is Essential

Our financial transparency is built into our business model. We work on a management fee basis, which means that SAGE earns a fixed amount of money per year for administering the food service agreement. This is our salary. The amount does not change, whether we're under- or over-budget.

We have amazing, transparent financial systems. Each week our managers update wages, purchases, inventory and receivables. Then they generate a statement and deliver it to our clients.

When everyone works from the same set of numbers, the results make total sense. If a question arises, you can rely on our managers, district manager and Accounting department to have the answer.

We share all of the financial information with you because this is a partnership.

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Our leaders are experts with years of hands-on and management experience in the food and dining industry

News Center

Spoonful of SAGE

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SAGE In the News

Paco Rodriguez

Paco Rodriguez is President and Co-Founder of SAGE Dining Services®.

As someone who rarely bought school lunches as a child, Paco never imagined he’d be doing what he does today.

Born in Brooklyn and raised in the Bronx, Paco learned the value of hard work at an early age. His mother was a teacher and his father, a Spanish immigrant, worked in restaurant and hotel kitchens; the food service industry has been a part of Paco’s life since childhood.

Paco’s own career in food service began after graduating from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a bachelor’s degree in political science. While studying in Harvard’s joint JD/MBA program, he managed the law school’s campus pub (and met Tina in a tax class).

After graduating from Harvard, Paco worked for a global management consulting firm in New York and later became the chief operating officer for a regional ice cream chain. Ice cream paved the way for his position as a vice president in the school and college division of a major food service company.

Paco and his wife, Tina, founded SAGE Dining Services® in 1990. SAGE stands for “Setting A Good Example®,” which describes the corporate philosophy they wanted their company to exhibit. Today, SAGE serves independent schools and small colleges in 37 states, D.C., and Canada.

A frequent speaker on management strategy, Paco enjoys presenting leadership lessons based on the Battle of Gettysburg. He’s also a wine collector and connoisseur, and he regularly hosts wine tastings for SAGE Managers and clients.

In 2022, Paco and his wife and fellow Co-Founder, Tina, received the 2022 Silver Plate Award from the International Foodservice Manufacturers Association, one of the highest honors in the hospitality industry, recognizing standout contributions from the nation’s restaurant and food service operators. They also received a 2023 Baltimore Business Journal Family-Owned Business Award, which honors family-owned businesses in the Baltimore area for overall excellence, innovation, ethics, philanthropy, and contribution to the strength of the region.

They were also named two of The Daily Record’s Influential Marylanders in 2020 and were awarded the 2021 Sarah Daignault Outstanding Support of Independent Schools Award by the National Business Officers Association.

Tina Rodriguez

Tina Rodriguez co-founded SAGE Dining Services® in 1990, blending her passion for culinary excellence and financial integrity with a lifelong commitment to education. She oversees SAGE’s administrative functions and travels extensively to connect with clients and Team Members across North America.

Tina is a sought-after speaker on the subjects of food management, nutrition, and entrepreneurship. She has addressed a wide range of audiences, including the national conventions of The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS), the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), the National Business Officers Association (NBOA), and regional meetings for the Georgia Independent Schools Association (GISA), Tennessee Association of Independent Schools (TAIS), Association of Independent Schools of New England (AISNE), and Mid-South Independent School Business (MISBO), as well as The Conference Board and the Young Presidents Organization (YPO), among others.

While growing SAGE, Tina served as an adjunct faculty member at Johns Hopkins University for more than 15 years. She also taught at the University of Maryland Robert H. Smith School of Business and Notre Dame of Maryland University.

Tina is a board member and vice chair of the board of Innovation Works Baltimore, as well as a board member of St. Mary’s Seminary & University. From 2010 to 2020, she served on the board of The Common Market Philadelphia, as well as the pastoral council at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen in Baltimore from 2010 to 2013.

In 2020, Tina was named one of Maryland’s Top 100 Women by The Daily Record, as well as one of the Influential Marylanders. She and her husband and fellow Co-Founder, Paco, were awarded the 2021 Sarah Daignault Outstanding Support of Independent Schools Award by NBOA, the IFMA 2022 Silver Plate Award, and the 2023 Family-Owned Business Award from the Baltimore Business Journal.

Prior to her work at SAGE, Tina was a consultant at Bain & Co., an international strategy consulting firm. She graduated from the Wharton School of Finance and Harvard Law School.

Tina and Paco have four grown children and two adorable grandchildren. They live in Baltimore. In her spare time, Tina enjoys running half-marathons, singing in her church choir, and working in her organic garden.

Marcel Gallo

Marcel Gallo oversees all of our accounts in North America. Prior to becoming COO, Marcel served as SAGE’s Vice President for the Northeast.

As a young man, Marcel owned and operated a retail catering and imported foods business in Pawling, New York. He later sold the business and began a career in school food service as the sous chef at an independent school. Before he joined SAGE in 2005, Marcel held key management positions in the school food service industry, as food service director and district manager for a large contract food service company.

Marcel earned an associate degree from The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York, and is ServSafe® certified. He also studied business and marketing at Iona College.

He is married with two children and lives in Orange County, New York. In his spare time, Marcel loves building things and being the “sports guy” for his kids and the Frisbee thrower for his dog.

Lyle Kan

Lyle has more than 35 years of combined experience in food industry marketing and management consulting. He specializes in strategic planning, business development, and customer relationship management. Before joining SAGE, Lyle was the Senior Vice President of Strategic Planning and Business Development for a West Coast-based food service manufacturing supplier. Prior to that, he served as the Arizona and New Mexico Market Manager for a leading national pizza restaurant chain.

Lyle graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in biochemical sciences from Harvard College and received his Master of Business Administration from the Harvard Business School, earning multiple awards for academic excellence, leadership, and service along the way.

He has channeled his leadership skills into community involvement in the service of Team Red, White and Blue (a veterans service organization); the San Gabriel Valley Council of the Boy Scouts, the Los Angeles Children's Museum, the West Point Parents Club of Orange County, and the San Marino Schools Foundation. Lyle enjoys traveling, trying new foods, collecting art, and competing in marathons and triathlons.

James Leachman

James Leachman is Vice President of Sales for SAGE. He joined the Sales team in 2008 and, 15 years later, was asked to lead SAGE’s sales effort.

He began his food service career in 1990 with an intensive, 18-week culinary training program. He spent nine years in various operational and sales positions with a large contract food service provider, working in the collegiate, corporate, and healthcare sectors. He also managed the company’s largest vending operation in the Southeast and trained new managers at one of the venues.

Before joining SAGE, James was president and co-owner of a mobile home business with several locations along the Gulf Coast. He sold his business after eight years, and his love and passion for the food service industry brought him to SAGE. He immediately fell in love with the SAGE culture and the friendliness of all the Team Members he met.

A resident of Mobile, Alabama, James attended UMS-Wright Preparatory School and holds a bachelor of science in business administration from Spring Hill College. He touts that he speaks seven dialects of Southern English, and that’s in just three states.

Scott Mowery

Scott has over two decades' worth of experience in accounting, finance, and strategic development. Most recently, Scott served as Vice President of Finance at a nationwide landscaping company. Prior to that, he advanced within a major recruiting and contract staffing firm, eventually becoming Executive Director of Financial Operations.

Scott received his Bachelor of Arts in Accounting and Finance from Gettysburg College, and his MBA from Loyola University. He is a Certified Public Accountant in the state of Maryland.
Scott lives in Hunt Valley, MD, and has recently served as Vice Chairman for the Special Olympics of Maryland.

Todd Evans

Todd Evans is SAGE's Vice President of Procurement. He supervises all procurement functions, including product consolidation, vendor sourcing, contract negotiation, relationship management, compliance, and contract manufacture.

Evans has over 33 years of experience in materials management, purchasing, and procurement. He has spent most of his career at Hunt Valley-based McCormick & Company, Inc., moving up from Purchasing Agent to Procurement Director. He was responsible for leadership of North American and global strategies in the areas of Indirect Procurement and External Manufacturing, and he developed and deployed the global Procurement Center of Excellence (COE), an organization focused on procurement analytics. Evans received a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from Towson University and a Master of Science in Business Management from Johns Hopkins University.

John Posenau

John Posenau joins SAGE from Red Lion Controls in York, PA, where he served as the Vice President for Global Shared Services. John started his career designing data acquisition and control systems for NASA’s Langely Research Center. He’s worked as a CIO or Technology Director for organizations including The Virginia Institute of Marine Science, Sungard Higher Education, the NAACP, York College of Pennsylvania, and Johns Hopkins University.

John has an M.S. in Computer Science from the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, VA. He’s married with two children and lives in York, PA. When he’s not working or serving as the President of the York Suburban School Board, John enjoys traveling with his wife.

Lesley Vogel

Lesley Vogel is SAGE’s Vice President of Food and Nutrition.

A Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Lesley leads a team of Registered Dietitians whose expertise and continuous research ensure SAGE delivers the best, most current nutrition programs to our communities. They lead our allergen management training, The SAGE Spotlight Program®, and Performance Spotlight®. They review every ingredient and recipe, tag them for the top 12 food allergens, and ensure variety on every menu. Lesley's leadership has positioned SAGE to have one of the industry's strongest nutrition programs.

Lesley received her bachelor's degree in food and nutrition from Florida State University and completed her dietetic internship at Yale New Haven Hospital. Before joining SAGE in 2014, Lesley spent 20 years in clinical practice, first providing care at The Johns Hopkins Hospital and later educating corporate clients, families, and students through a community-based practice. As the parent of a child with a nut allergy, Lesley has firsthand experience managing the complexities of food allergies. She enjoys sharing this expertise and her passion for nutrition with our communities.

Lesley's hobbies include hiking, skiing, kayaking, and spending time with family and friends.

Erin Felter

Erin Felter has over 20 years of experience leading human resources for diverse global companies in technology, manufacturing, and healthcare. She joined SAGE in April 2023 and is responsible for safeguarding the company through comprehensive reporting processes, accurate and timely financial reporting, and regulatory compliance.

Before coming to SAGE, she led a team in delivering talent planning, rewards programs, and human capital management systems for a community-based healthcare system in Baltimore. She also spent several years consulting with a multinational financial firm, where she leveraged her expertise to help clients achieve their strategic talent goals. Most recently, Erin served as chief human resources officer for a global telecom analytics company, leading a team in providing services to more than 2,000 employees in 10 states and 49 countries. She’s passionate about building strategies and initiatives focused on solving business and people challenges.

Erin has a bachelor’s degree in economics from Baylor University and a Master of Business Administration from Loyola University. She’s a Certified Employee Benefits Specialist (CEBS)®, Certified Plan Sponsor Professional (CPSP)™, and Compensation Management Specialist (CMS). She lives in Baltimore with her husband and three daughters.

Jennifer Quick

Jennifer Quick is SAGE’s Vice President of Operations in the Western United States and has been instrumental in growing and opening venues from Texas to Washington. Throughout her tenure, Jennifer has overseen multiple venue openings, facility renovations, large event planning, and catering for high-volume events. She ensures that operations comply with SAGE Standards and that our services are consistently maintained at the highest levels.

Jennifer joined SAGE as a Food Service Director in 2003, was promoted to District Manager in 2005, and was appointed Regional Manager in 2016. She’s been instrumental in growing and opening venues in the West Region of the United States. Jennifer specializes in assisting her clients in conceptual design, construction, and food service recommendations aligned with their vision.

Jennifer’s food service career spans more than 20 years, beginning as a service manager while in college. Before coming to SAGE, Jennifer owned her own catering company and seafood restaurant on the Texas coast. She studied marketing at the University of North Texas.

In her spare time, Jennifer loves entertaining and interior design and is a connoisseur of Mexican food. She lives in San Antonio with her husband and two daughters.

Gary Fugman

Gary Fugman is a SAGE Vice President of Operations for the Northern and Midwest Regions of the United States.

Gary will continue to ensure we deliver high-level operations for your community. He's responsible for implementing SAGE programs and for training and developing management teams that continuously create the exceptional dining experiences you expect from us.

Gary began his career in food service in 1992, working in roles that ranged from executive chef to the owner/general manager of a 250-seat restaurant. Gary joined SAGE as a Catering Manager in 1999 and was promoted to Food Production Manager in 2000, Food Service Director in 2002, District Manager in 2005, and Regional Manager in 2018. Gary continues to foster the success of his venues through his communication, food, and catering expertise.

Gary currently lives in Niverville, NY.

Tom Ankner

Tom Ankner is SAGE’s Vice President of Operations for the mid-Atlantic region of the United States. He has more than 25 years of experience in food service and the culinary arts.

Tom came to SAGE in 2005 as a Culinary Support Team Member and later became the Food Service Director at Saint Andrew’s School in Boca Raton, Florida. He was promoted to District Manager in 2008, Area Manager in 2016, Regional Manager in 2018, and Vice President in 2023. He fosters success through his communication, food, and catering expertise and ensures that we deliver exceptional dining experiences for the communities we serve.

Tom earned his associate degree in culinary arts from The Culinary Institute of America. He went on to earn his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in hospitality management and food service management from Florida International University. He’s ServSafe® certified and has accumulated certificates in a variety of food service topics.

Brandon Barnes

Brandon is responsible for venues in the Southeast region of the United States. He has over 22 years of experience in the food service industry, 19 of which have been in educational dining. Brandon joined SAGE in 2011 as Food Service Director at Fort Worth Country Day in Texas. In 2015 he was part of the Culinary Support Team and later became District Manager in Texas. Brandon was promoted to Regional Manager in 2020.

Brandon earned an associate degree in culinary arts from Johnson & Wales University in Charlotte, North Carolina, and a Bachelor of Science in culinary management from The Art Institute of Pittsburgh. He’s ServSafe® and ServSafe Alcohol® certified, and he’s earned an American Culinary Federation Member Food Management Professional Credential. A native of Greensboro, North Carolina, Brandon currently resides in Atlanta, GA.

Connie Chambers

Connie Chambers is responsible for venues in the Midwest region of the United States. She has over 35 years of experience in the food service industry and has a strong background in hospitality management, strategy development, sustainable practices, and client relationship building.

Before joining SAGE in 2023, Connie held several roles in large contract food service companies, including district manager, where she led multiple teams across Illinois to deliver exceptional results for college and university dining programs. She was also previously the general manager of food and beverage at McCormick Place, the largest convention center in North America, and received the Illinois Governor’s Sustainability Award as part of the food service team there.

Connie earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in hospitality and tourism from Roosevelt University in Chicago and an Associate of Applied Science degree in culinary arts from Washburne Culinary & Hospitality Institute. She’s ServSafe® certified and currently lives in Chicago.

Carl Sharrio

Carl Sharrio is the Sales Account Executive for the Northeast, responsible for Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

Carl has over 26 years of sales experience. After working for large dining service companies for 14 years, Carl spent a few years as a Business Development Manager for a Northeast-based dining services company, where he oversaw the sales process, including prospect identification, qualification, survey organization and execution, proposal development, sales presentation, and contract negotiation.

Carl graduated from Springfield College in MA with a B.S. in Exercise Physiology and a concentration in Business Administration. He resides in Andover, Massachusetts, where he’s a little league coach and high school hockey supporter.

Kenn Orlowski

Kenn Orlowski is SAGE’s Sales Account Executive for the mid-Atlantic region, responsible for the District of Columbia, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia. He brings with him more than a decade of experience in the contract dining industry and has expertise in business development, sales proposal creation and coordination, contract management, and client relations.

Before joining SAGE in 2024, Kenn held several positions in large food service companies, including regional director of sales, where he was responsible for acquiring new accounts in the corporate and independent school sectors. Most recently, he was director of business development for a food service management provider specializing in corporations, senior living, and healthcare; in his time with the company, he brought them into the private education market and added their first two schools to their portfolio.

Kenn graduated from the University of Connecticut with a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology and currently lives in Wethersfield, Connecticut. In his spare time, he enjoys following New England sports teams, exercising, playing golf, trying out new recipes, and spending time with his wife and son.

Marty Coker

Marty Coker is SAGE’s Sales Account Executive for the Midwest. She’s responsible for growth in Kentucky, Kansas, Missouri, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota.

Marty has over 25 years of experience selling contract food service accounts as a business development executive. She’s worked nationally to launch new food service markets, create business plans, and develop winning client partnerships across multiple industry sectors. She most recently owned an executive coaching business that provided strategic coaching focused on achieving exceptional, sustained results.

Throughout her career, Marty has been the recipient of national and international awards because of her ability to build lasting relationships with her clients. She’s also a passionate advocate for education reform and has served as an elected representative and chairwoman of the Kentucky School-Based Decision Making Council. She and her family live in Louisville, Kentucky.

Patrick Casey

Patrick Casey is SAGE’s Sales Account Executive for the Midwest region, responsible for growth in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

With more than 15 years of experience in sales and account management, Patrick has expertise in project management, business development, contract negotiation, and client relations. Before joining SAGE in April 2024, he served as a strategic account executive at a scientific sourcing solutions company, where he led client development initiatives, managed Fortune 500 accounts, and drove $1.5 million in annual growth. Prior to that, he spent several years at Hubert, spearheading projects exceeding $1 million in food service equipment sales, negotiating contracts, and consistently surpassing sales targets.

Patrick has a Master of Business Administration degree from Thomas More University and a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in marketing and management from the University of Cincinnati. He’s married with two sons and lives on a small farm in Harrison, Ohio. In his spare time, he enjoys horse riding and participating in cowboy mounted shooting competitions with his family.

Troy Anderson

Troy Anderson is the Sales Account Executive for the Southeast region, responsible for growth in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and eastern Tennessee.

With more than 20 years of experience in the food service industry, Troy is a seasoned expert with knowledge of all aspects related to successful restaurant and contract management. Before joining SAGE, he worked for several restaurants and food service companies, honing his leadership, communication, guest service, and business development skills. Most recently, he served as a district manager at a food service and facilities management company, where he was responsible for maintaining and renewing contracts, handling account sales, and project planning and implementation.

Troy has an Associate of Science degree in culinary arts from Sullivan University and a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. In his spare time, he enjoys golfing, hiking, snow skiing, traveling, attending live sporting events, and spending time with his family, including his four children and three dogs.

Brent Bolton

Brent Bolton is a Sales Account Executive for the South Central region, responsible for Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, central and western Tennessee, and Texas. He also focuses on higher education accounts in Georgia, South Carolina, and Texas.

Brent was previously a District Manager with SAGE for several years, sharing his expertise in cuisine, communication, and management with teams across the South. He began his career in food service more than 20 years ago, working in managerial roles for the University of Alabama system. He eventually became general manager of campus services at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where he oversaw residential and retail dining, catering operations, and over 250 employees. Most recently, he worked at a North American hospitality company, managing districts in Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana and supporting new sales and retention.

Brent graduated from the University of North Alabama with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in marketing. He currently lives in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

Janelle Martin

Janelle Martin is the Sales Account Executive for the West, responsible for growth in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas, Utah, and Washington. 

Before joining SAGE, Janelle served as the director of business development at a leading national campus food service dining operator. Her experience also includes selling group tours and managing tour staff at the Rose Bowl Stadium and working for the Los Angeles Lakers as a client service specialist. 

Janelle has a bachelor’s degree in public relations from California State University, Fullerton. Currently, she lives in Los Angeles, where she enjoys exploring the city’s many restaurants, attending concerts, and doing outdoor activities with her husband and son.

James Dawson

Jim is the Sales Account Executive responsible for SAGE’s growth in Ontario, Canada. He brings more than 25 years of sales management experience and business development in the hospitality food service industry to the position.

He began his first management position with a global hotel, restaurant, and resort chain and moved on to a food and beverage manager position with a large North American hotel chain. In 2006, Jim started his contract food service career as an operations manager for a large hospitality company and was eventually promoted to a district manager position. Most recently, Jim’s endeavors have been in sales, emphasizing targeting new clients, developing proposals, opening new accounts, and building lasting relationships.

Jim holds an associate degree in hotel and restaurant management from Algonquin College in Ottawa, Ontario; he also studied hotel and resort management at Sir Sandford Fleming College of Applied Arts. Jim resides in the suburbs of Toronto, where he enjoys spending time with his family at their cottage, boating, fishing, and cooking great meals.



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