Press Releases

Apr 1, 2013

HMSHost Named a Finalist for National Restaurant Association’s Operator Innovations Awards

Company recognized for Innovation in Food Safety and Menu Development

BETHESDA, MD—Global restaurateur HMSHost has been selected as a finalist for the National Restaurant Association’s 2013 Operator Innovations Awards. HMSHost is one of three finalists in both the Food Safety and theMenu Development categories vying for a chance at being named the Top Innovator in each category and potentially the overall Innovator of the Year.

The National Restaurant Association is the leading restaurant industry organization in the United States and this is the second consecutive year for the Operator Innovations Awards.

HMSHost’s food safety nomination is based on the company’s comprehensive approach to food safety. The program features an audit process that goes beyond evaluation to integrate consultation and training, enabling the company to ensure strict, uniform food safety in its airport and motorway travel plaza restaurants.

HMSHost was selected in the menu development category for its Freedom to Choose platform. The internally developed, web based tool gives HMSHost’s restaurant operators access to hundreds of menu items in order to quickly and easily tailor menus that reflect airport consumer demands and prevalent regional trends.

Sheila Bliss, Director of Quality Assurance, and Annamarie Pintozzi, Corporate Chef and Senior Manager Culinary will represent HMSHost for their respective award categories at the 2013 National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show – held May 18-21 at Chicago’s McCormick Place.

“HMSHost is honored to receive this recognition from the National Restaurant Association for our food safety and menu development programs,” said HMSHost Chief Operating Officer, Pat Banducci. “We are especially proud of Sheila Bliss and Annamarie Pintozzi for their creativity and execution that resulted in our selection as a finalist.”

The Operator Innovations Awards conference is a gathering of industry leaders to celebrate and examine significant industry innovations. These awards recognize successful restaurant and foodservice operators that are leading the progression of the food and beverage industry. Judging is done by a panel of non-partisan judges with a breadth of foodservice industry experience and knowledge.

About HMSHost
Global restaurateur HMSHost is a world leader in creating dining for travel venues. HMSHost operates locations all over North America, and is part of Autogrill Group, the world's leading provider of food & beverage services for people on the move. Visit for more information.