4355 Laurel Rd | Brunswick, Ohio 44212
330.741.8000

Cooking and Serving with Soul



Left to Right: Sarah Messner, Trista Heppner, Taylor Bash, Kat Pathroff, Bob Speelman, Jennifer Bloomfield, Eddie Johnson, and Tammy Ohmer

June 7, 2019
NOTE: This story was taken from the blog of Foundations Health leader Bob Speelman. Each week Bob works at one of his facilities in different roles such as housekeeping, or as a nursing assistant, to bring A Culture of Care.

I spent the day at Brunswick Pointe, our 90-bed facility in Brunswick, Ohio. Michelle Wood is the Administrator and has an amazing team working alongside her. One of those fantastic team members is Kat Pathroff, the chef and dietary manager at Brunswick Pointe. To say Pat has a passion for food would be selling her short. Pat has a passion for making a difference!

Kat and her team immediately made me feel welcome and then put me to work. We had lunch to get ready. I was talking, asking questions, and Kat looked over at me with a smile and said, “You can talk and work at the same time.” I got it! She runs a well-oiled machine and doesn’t need anyone slowing them down.

All joking aside, the smiles on the faces of her staff and the atmosphere they had in the kitchen was terrific. They truly were a team, and they loved what they were doing. I wanted to find out why. As the day went on, I began to see. Watching them in the dining room and their interaction with the residents and the smiles and laughter it reminded me of a family dinner. They loved their residents and wanted each meal to be an event and something they not only loved to eat but an occasion they would remember.

When lunch was over, I was on the dishes. This was my first time doing the dish station and let me tell you it was much harder than I realized. The pace is intense, and Pat described it best, “It’s like playing Tetris,” with regard to placing the plates, cups, utensils, and pan on the trays and keeping them going through the dish machine. I was sweating and spraying myself with the rinse hose while trying not to hold up the line. All of a sudden, out of the blue, Disney Theme songs start playing and the entire staff begins to sing along - including Kat. I just had to smile and laugh. This team works really hard, loves what they are doing, and the difference they are making. The food was absolutely amazing and the passion just as beautiful. 

“A recipe has no soul, you as the cook must bring soul to the recipe.”

– Thomas Keller


Kat – you are an amazing leader and we are so lucky to have you on our team. Thank you for your love and passion for our residents, your staff and food! You and your team brought soul to everything you made. I enjoyed my day with you and your team and will not forget it. You are our Culture of Care!!

Bob Speelman

p.s. – I will work and talk from now on.

Bob's Blog

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