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Alumni Focus

Kendall Alum Serves as Hotel Julian’s Director of Sales and Marketing

Hotel Julian, a chic boutique hotel on Chicago’s Michigan Avenue near Millennium Park, has tapped some talent from Kendall College of Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management at National Louis University.

Daniel Grajdura, who earned his Hospitality Management degree from Kendall in 2005, provides a polished presence as the hotel’s Director of Sales and Marketing. He can often be found on the hotel’s ground floor, a trendy-looking space which includes a mix of contemporary seating and vintage touches like a portrait of the building’s renowned architect, Benjamin Marshall, painted on brick at one side of the cocktail bar. That space flows seamlessly into the hotel lobby and a restaurant, About Last Knife. Continue reading »

Hotel Chicago West Loop Names Kendall Alum Laramie, 31, as GM Jean-Luc Laramie plans to translate hotel experience for millennials

Jean-Luc Laramie

Jean-Luc Laramie serves as Hotel Chicago West Loop’s general manager.

Hotel Chicago West Loop, which is known for its art gallery and its streetscape art in guest rooms, has named an alum of  Kendall College of Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management as its general manager.

Jean-Luc Laramie earned his B.A. in hospitality management in 2012. He enrolled at Kendall after taking a hotel management training program in Amman, Jordan, then worked as a bell boy while taking classes at Kendall. Continue reading »

Golden Apple Award Presented to NLU Alum Greta Kringle Science teacher surprised at her school, Eric Solorio Academy High School in Chicago

Greta Kringle.

Greta Kringle, a National Louis University alum, accepts the Golden Apple award.

Golden Apple, a nonprofit organization that recognizes excellence in education, visited National Louis University alum Greta Kringle ’13 in her Chicago classroom Wednesday with a very special surprise: one of the 10 prestigious, highly-coveted Golden Apple Awards for Excellence in Teaching in 2019.

Golden Apple representatives visit each winner in their classroom and present the award with great fanfare in front of the winner’s school leadership, family and students. In this case they arrived at Eric Solorio Academy High School in Chicago’s Southwest-side Gage Park neighborhood, where Kringle teaches 10th-12th-grade science. Continue reading »

NLU Alum Nicole Johnson Running for 20th Ward Alderman An educator, she earned her Master of Arts in Teaching

NLU alum Nicole Johnson is running for 20th ward alderman in Chicago. Chicago’s South-side 20th ward is apparently fed up with corruption. The alderman who’s stepping down, Willie Cochran, was arrested on corruption charges and withdrew from the race. He will soon face a federal trial. Two other  20th ward aldermen, Clifford Kelley and Arenda Troutman, served prison time for corrupt dealings. according to the Chicago Tribune.

That has prompted 15 people to run in the race for 20th ward alderman, including Nicole Johnson, who graduated from National Louis University in 2013 with a master of arts in teaching (M.A.T.). Johnson also earned another master’s degree in education policy from the University of Pennsylvania, according to the Chicago Maroon. Continue reading »

Golden Apple Finalists for Principals’ Award Include NLU Alum Roscoe Golden Apple bestows the Stanley C. Golder leadership award on principals, heads of school

Jim Roscoe, National Louis University alum.

Jim Roscoe, who earned his Ed.D. in Educational Leadership at National Louis University, has been named a finalist for the Golden Apple Leadership award.

After the Golden Apple Foundation named three National University alumni as finalists this year for its highly-coveted teaching awards, it announced it has selected another NLU alum for its leadership award, bestowed on a principal or head of school.

Golden Apple named James Roscoe, Ed.D., a 2011 graduate of NLU’s Ed.D. in Educational Leadership program, as one of eight finalists for its  Golden Apple Awards for Excellence in Leadership, presented in honor of founding Golden Apple board member Stanley C. Golder. Continue reading »

Tribune’s Critic’s Choice Award Goes to Kendall Alum Jennifer Kim Chicago Tribune critic Phil Vettel named her 'Rookie of the Year'

Jennifer Kim.

Detail from Chicago Tribune photographer E. Jason Wambsgans photo portrait of Kendall College at National Louis University alum Jennifer Kim.

Chicago Tribune food critic Phil Vettel has been impressed with Jennifer Kim’s restaurant Passerotto ever since he first reviewed it last summer, 10 weeks after its opening.

This week, he bestowed his Chicago Tribune Critic’s Choice award on Kim, an alum of Kendall College of Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management at National Louis University. She earned his “Rookie of the Year” award for Passerotto’s debut. Continue reading »

Golden Apple Selects 3 NLU Alums as Finalists for Teaching Award Prestigious non-profit selected just 32 teachers in Illinois as finalists

 

Golden Apple, a prestigious Illinois nonprofit which bestows highly-sought-after awards for exemplary teaching, has selected three National Louis University alumni as finalists for its 2019 awards.

For the first time, the organization has expanded the eligibility for its Golden Apple Awards for Excellence in Teaching to include all of Illinois. In a highly competitive process, Golden Apple received more than 550 nominations of excellent high school teachers from 71 Illinois counties. The organization asked master teachers, who recognize instructional best practices and professional standards, to narrow the pack down to  32 high school educators selected as finalists for the award. They represent just  6 percent of the nominees. Continue reading »

Alum Aida Flores, Educator, Running for 25th Ward Alderman She faces four candidates in Feb. 26 race to succeed Alderman Danny Solis

Chicago’s 25th Ward has gotten a deluge of publicity lately with news about outgoing Alderman Danny Solis. Solis recently resigned as chairman of the city council’s Zoning Committee after the Chicago Sun-Times reported that federal prosecutors have prepared a document outlining wrongdoing and corruption on his part.

Months ago, however, Solis announced he would not run for office again, and one National Louis University alum, Aida Flores ’10, and four other challengers stepped up to run for the 25th ward alderman’s seat. Gazette Chicago has the details. Continue reading »

Virgin Hotels Promotes Kendall Alum to National Post Growing company named Owen Deignan Director of Food & Beverage Operations

Owen Deignan, Kendall College at National Louis University alum and Director of Food & Beverage Operations for Virgin Hotels.

Virgin Hotels, a hotel brand owned by noted business person Sir Richard Branson, has promoted Owen Deignan,  a Kendall College at National Louis University alum, as the Director of Food & Beverage Operations for the growing company.

Deignan will be responsible for the food and beverage operations of all Virgin Hotels, including the Virgin Hotels San Francisco, opening in 2019.

Deignan earned his AAS in Culinary Arts at Kendall and has worked with a number of food and beverage visionaries. He brings more than two decades of experience to his new post.

Virgin Hotels released a statement which said Deignan will work closely with the senior leadership team to develop and execute Virgin’s strategic plan to drive growth and profitability in the culinary space, largely focusing on the evolution of the Commons Club concept and developing individual dining destinations in future Virgin Hotels.

Jay Wetzel, Vice President of Virgin Hotels Food & Beverage, remarked, “Owen was instrumental in the success of Commons Club and crafting the seasonal strategy for Cerise at Virgin Hotels Chicago, which has seen unparalleled success this year. In addition, Owen has proved that strong leadership skills, pinpoint focus and comradery are the key ingredients in building a great team.”

Continue reading »