Colorado Springs Military Newspaper Group

Fort Carson Mountaineer

LaRochelle DFAC wins USASOC Connelly award

By Sgt. Justin Smith | 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne)

Editor’s note: The full names and identifications of those serving in the 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne) are withheld due to safety and security of the Soldiers and their Families.

FORT CARSON, Colo. — Last month the culinary specialists of 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne) working out of LaRochelle Dining Facility (DFAC) won another Philip A. Connelly Award for military food service excellence.

The award puts all aspects of a DFAC and its team under a microscope to include food quality, creativity and proficiency. All DFACs across the Army are eligible to compete, making the margin for error next to nothing in all areas.

“The Philip A. Connelly is something to showcase our daily operations,” said the DFAC manager. “It takes training, mentoring and teaching our younger Soldiers, and perfecting our NCOs in their abilities.”

The competition is also tiered, so each DFAC competed at a lower level, such as garrison or command, and as they win they will continue to move up to the final tier, which is the Department of the Army level.

LaRochelle won the U.S. Army Special Operations Command level contest in October and will move on to the Department of the Army level.

The team at LaRochelle constantly looks for ways to sharpen their competitive edge for the competition as well as deliver the best quality chow to the Soldiers of 10th SFG(A).

“We’re not trying to take the easy way out,” said a specialist assigned to 10th SFG(A). “We’re doing everything step-by-step and you can’t go wrong with that.”

Select culinary specialists in the past have taken on temporary internships with well-established chefs in the Colorado Springs area to learn new techniques and bring them back to improve the DFAC experience.

Furthermore, professionals are brought in to train the entire team on skills like field butchery and food preparation, which become a welcome addition to any field exercise.

“What sets our DFAC apart from other dining facilities is our expertise and technical skill,” said the DFAC manager. “We get the opportunity to do a lot of different training that traditional units don’t get to be a part of.”

The 53rd Department of the Army Philip A. Connelly competition is scheduled to be judged in early December of this year, and the culinary specialists of the LaRochelle DFAC are ready for the challenge.

“I’m very confident in my team,” said another specialist at the LaRochelle DFAC. “We have a certain way of doing things and this will be nothing new for us.”

LaRochelle DFAC wins USASOC Connelly award
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