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Lakeside Dining

Our Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Commitment

One of the Residential & Dining Enterprises (R&DE) Core Values is valuing and embracing diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB). Under the leadership of Senior Associate Vice Provost and Senior Adviser to the Provost on Equity and Inclusion Dr. Shirley Everett, R&DE is recognized as a campus leader in DEIB and supports the university’s IDEAL initiative. Read about R&DE’s DEIB programs here.

R&DE Stanford Dining advances Dr. Everett’s vision by supporting the diverse needs of students and the campus community, by empowering and supporting its diverse staff, and by advocating for change at Stanford and beyond.

Dr. Shirley J. Everett, Ed.D., MBA
Senior Associate Vice Provost for R&DE and Senior Adviser to the Provost on Equity and Inclusion

Supporting Our Diverse Community

Culturally Diverse Food Programs

Stanford Dining and Stanford Hospitality & Auxiliaries serve over 25,000 meals every day and our globally inspired menus reflect and celebrate the diversity of cultures, identities, and food preferences that make the Stanford community special. We believe that food can be a great teacher and strive to introduce our students to new foods and food experiences that augment their education and expand their worldview. In partnership with Residential Education, we integrate a number of culturally inspired food concepts and culinary celebrations into the residential experience including:

  • Hispanic Heritage Month
  • Dia de los Muertos 
  • Diwali
  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day 
  • Lunar New Year 
  • Black History Month 
  • Mardi Gras 
  • Ramadan/Eid al Fitr 
  • Passover 
  • Cinco de Mayo 
  • Juneteenth 
  • Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage Month 
  • PRIDE 


Inclusive Dining

Offering an Inclusive Dining Experience for those with Food Allergies, Dietary Needs, and Disabilities

R&DE Stanford Dining understands the unique challenges that students with food allergies experience when trying to navigate their dietary needs on campus. More than 15 years ago, R&DE Stanford Dining was the first university dining program in the nation to designate a dining hall as “nut free” and we continue to lead by example, partnering with FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education), Stanford’s Office of Accessible Education (OAE), and student advocates to help improve the college experience for students with food allergies through enhanced awareness, accommodations and training. Since launching the Food Allergies @ Stanford program in 2017, our dedicated Food Allergy Program Nutritionist has supported thousands of Stanford students, staff and guests with food allergies and special dietary needs. Our staff works collaboratively with the Office of Accessible Education to accommodate students in the dining halls with a range of disabilities including mobility and access challenges, medical conditions, vision/hearing impairments, and eating disorders.

Supporting Our Diverse Staff

Prioritizing Gender Equality, Diversity, Inclusion in the Kitchen

R&DE Stanford Dining uses our dining program as a platform to recognize a diversity of chefs who influence and educate our culinary team and students. Together we are creating critically important food experiences and educational opportunities in support of Stanford's ethnic theme houses. Stanford Dining’s pioneering culinary initiatives integrate an inclusive recruitment model with ethical sourcing and collaborative menus, bringing in accomplished women chefs and women chefs of color—including Tanya Holland, Mai Pham, and Iliana de la Vega—to consult and speak about their experiences.

Red Skillet Kitchen @ Lakeside

inspired by Tanya Holland

Chef Tanya Holland of Oakland’s Brown Sugar Kitchen and Bravo Top Chef alum brings her inventive take on modern soul food to Red Skillet Kitchen at Lakeside Dining. Students can enjoy Tanya's interpretations of soul food starring southern classics such as chicken and waffles, smoked meats, grits and greens along with a diversity of cuisine from Africa and the Caribbean. Chef Tanya has been recognized for her many talents by O Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, and Travel & Leisure among other publications, and The City of Oakland declared June 5th, 2012 as Tanya Holland Day for her "Significant Role in Creating Community and Establishing Oakland as a Culinary Center".

Cardinal Sage @ Stern

inspired by Iliana de la Vega

Prominent Mexican-born Chef Iliana de la Vega of Austin’s celebrated El Naranjo restaurant, incorporates her innovative Oaxacan flavors into the menu at Cardinal Sage, located at Stern Dining. The menus offer a range of modern Mexican favorites featuring slow-marinated meats, fresh house-made salsas, and flavorful rice and bean dishes cooked from scratch. In addition to sharing the cuisine of her heritage (El Naranjo has been named “the only real Mexican restaurant in Texas” by local press), Chef Iliana has been granted the prestigious Ohtli award in recognition for her work with the Hispanic population and for furthering Mexican gastronomy.

Star Ginger @ Wilbur

inspired by Mai Pham

Nationally-acclaimed Chef Mai Pham of Sacramento’s Lemon Grass Kitchen and Star Ginger showcases her fresh Southeast Asian cuisine at Wilbur Dining’s Star Ginger. Menus feature the bright flavors of Vietnam, Thailand, and beyond, from hearty authentic Thai curries and grilled meats to fresh, flavorful Vietnamese noodle soups and salads. Chef Mai is a pioneer in promoting Vietnamese culture and cuisine in the US and she has been featured by Martha Stewart, NPR and the Food Network, as well as authoring multiple cookbooks on Vietnamese and Thai cooking.

Diverse Leadership Team & Diverse Staff

R&DE Stanford Dining takes pride in recruiting and retaining a diverse leadership team and staff and cultivating a culture where staff feel supported, respected, included and empowered to do their best work. As one of the nation’s leading dining programs, Stanford Dining is committed to taking an inward gaze and increasing the diversity of its leadership and decision-making roles. Stanford Dining will continue to take concrete steps to serve as an allied organization in opposition to institutional racism and as a vehicle of anti-racist programs and policies.

Enhancing Inclusive Communications

In support of the IDEAL initiative’s goal to provide equality of access within the Stanford community, R&DE Stanford Dining produces its weekly employee newsletter in English, Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, Vietnamese and Tagalog. These newsletters contain important university and department information including email announcements that frontline staff may otherwise not have  access to. We are also translating staff training materials into multiple languages to enhance communications about food and workplace safety, food allergies, sustainability, and operational best practices.

Stanford Dining DEIB Affiliate Committee

Stanford Dining DEIB Affiliate Committee members: Tami Lin (co-chair), Daniel Archer (co-chair), Giselle Clements, Kenia Balderama, Rachelle Rivers, Calvin Membrano, Lee Levig, Sonja Spenser, Chad Yamate, Madeline Bissel.


Stanford Dining DEIB Affiliate Committee

The Stanford Dining DEIB Affiliate Committee was created to ensure that all members of the Stanford Dining community feel they belong, they are supported, and they have broad access to all the opportunities and benefits in Stanford Dining. The committee reports directly to the Assistant Vice Provost for Stanford Dining, Hospitality and Auxiliaries and is charged, among other things, with:

  • Assisting in the development of a Stanford Dining DEIB strategic plan, in alignment with the R&DE vision, mission, mantra, core values and DEIB priorities.
  • Helping to establish new DEIB functions, policies and procedures for Stanford Dining, with a focus on designing, building and maintaining a program of inclusivity and equity for our staff community
  • Collaborating with staff of all cultures, races, abilities, skill sets, and backgrounds to address friction points and promote a community where everyone feels included and empowered
  • Working with the Training and Development team help to create DEIB curriculum for training, workshops, huddles, and professional development opportunities for all layers of the organization, including professional staff, student staff, and bargained unit staff
  • Collaborating with other R&DE DEIB committees, Stanford Dining leadership, R&DE HR and using materials from IDEAL and other DEIB resources.

Advocating For Change

Ethical Sourcing & Supporting Black Businesses

Mr. Sherman

R&DE Stanford Dining leverages its institutional purchasing power to help reverse the disappearance of Black farms. 98% of Black agricultural landowners have been dispossessed since the 1950s. Today, less than one percent of all farmland is owned by Black farmers.

Stanford Dining is committed to helping Black farmers overcome historical barriers--such as systemic racism in lending and access to land and capital--as well as the related inequities caused by these barriers, such as insufficient access to traditional markets and distribution channels. Our vision is to share the purchasing model we develop and disseminate tool kits widely among both Black farmers and college and university foodservice leaders, so that the model can be scaled across the campus dining sector. Our hope is that every volume foodservice purchasing department will think of equitable supply chains in the same way they think about local purchasing: the norm, just as it is to buy local. Long term, the idea is to expand the purchasing model to support Black businesses more broadly, and ultimately increase supply chain diversity across other important underrepresented groups.


Racial Equity Working Group (MCURC)

The Racial Equity Working group is part of the Menus of Change University Research Collaborative (MCURC), co-founded and co-led by R&DE. The working group will help the MCURC take concrete steps as an allied organization in opposition to institutional racism and as a vehicle of antiracist programs and policies. The working group will help design and implement steps--using the draft MCURC Racial Equity Action Plan as a starting point--to ensure that the programs and policies of the Collaborative contribute to racial equity. The plan includes both inward and outward-facing action.


  • Inward gaze: Identify ways in which the programs and policies of the MCURC, as an institutional collaborative, can contribute to racial equity. This may include:
    • Advise on implementation and evaluation of progress toward stated priorities.
    • Support MCURC leadership in ongoing prioritization of action steps (i.e., based on the scale and urgency of the relevant problem(s) a given step can address).
    • Identify changes to the MCURC’s organizational structure, membership criteria, etc. (e.g,. collaborating with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Black farmers, NAACP, Black-owned businesses) in order to reduce racial disparities in terms of which individuals and institutions have access to the Collaborative, to make improvements in the lives of communities of color, and the many benefits that participation confers.
    • Identify changes to its criteria and roster of member institutions in order to reduce racial disparities in terms of which institutions have access to the Collaborative and the many benefits that participation confers.


  • Outward gaze: Identify ways in which the programs and policies of the MCURC--as a result of its core areas of impact: research, education, and innovation in support of Menus of Change Principles--can contribute to racial equity.
    • Advise on implementation and evaluation of progress toward stated priorities in the draft MCURC Racial Equity Action Plan.
    • Support MCURC leadership in ongoing prioritization of potential action steps (i.e., based on the scale and urgency of the relevant problem(s) a given step can address).
    • Identify research questions, academic disciplines, and individual researchers to bring a racial equity lens to the existing and future research agenda (including identifying intersections with the three current focus areas of plant-forward diets, food waste reduction, and drivers of consumer food choices).
    • Identify curricular and co-curricular programs the MCURC can offer and/or help its members offer that ensure equitable access to education about healthy, sustainable food choices.