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We will be providing an opportunity for owners and operators to schedule consultative appointments and meet with experts in the following categories: Concept & Design Development, Restaurant Operations, Human Resources Compliance, Technology Solutions, Business Expansion & Lease Negotiation, Financial & Accounting Management, and Workplace Safety

Below you’ll find a schedule for each of the categories. If there is a time that works for you, please click on that time to reserve. You will get a confirmation email once we’ve accepted the reservation. We only have a limited number of slots, so only one reservation per person.

Online reservations for Ask The Exports has closed. Walk-up appointments may be available. Please check with the reservation desk in aisle 200 at the show.


Focus: Thinking about a new build or remodel? Curtis Restaurant Equipment focuses on the design and planning of commercial kitchens for both chain restaurants and unique establishments, along with health care, and education facilities.

Meet with us: Ryan can assist you with any questions regarding lead times and scheduling of projects, trends and directions of the industry both today and looking into the future, as well as how to prepare for a new build or renovation of your site.

Jeremy can assist with layout and planning of food service equipment within various types of facility and restaurant concepts, questions about current construction codes related to food service environments and the evolving issues and concerns that food service operators have when preparing construction plans and documents.

Ryan McPhail
Chief Operating Officer, Curtis Restaurant Equipment

Jeremy Phifer
Designer, Curtis Restaurant Equipment


Focus: Think of your employee’s life cycle (recruitment, hiring, onboarding, training, development, performance, promotion or separation). HR Annie can advise as you motivate and inspire your teams while remaining true to legal compliance, your company culture and industry best practices.

Meet with us: With more than 18 years experience in hospitality leadership, Linda has led teams as General Manager, Director of Operations, restaurant owner and restaurant consultant. Her experience establishing training and SOP resources, hiring and developing teams, managing people, providing financial and work flow analysis, and leading strategic planning and vision/brand management were natural stepping stones to her dream job in Human Resources. Stop-by to ask questions about your handbooks, tricky employee situations, communication flow, or anything that keeps you awake at night as an operator or owner!

With 15 years of experience managing large, dynamic teams, Melonie’s transition into Human Resources was organic. She has high-level experience with all things HR and has taken a deep dive into employee relations, performance management, and training & development. Having been a leader in a variety of work environments including customer service, wellness, and production, she has a fair sense of workflow and how structure and care can help individuals and teams succeed.

Linda Addy
Senior Consultant, HR Annie Consulting


Melonie Good
Human Resources Consultant, HR Annie Consulting



Focus: Bruce can see things through numbers that tell a story about your business. He can help you understand the data and find solutions that work for you.

Meet with me: Bruce is responsible for delivering My Accounting Teams CFO Advisory services. He can answer questions and provide guidance on important restaurant metrics and performance analytics, financial health and preparing your company for growth, budgeting and forecasting discussions, as well as insights for business expansion plans and investor scenarios.

Bruce Lange
Founder/Partner and CFO, My Accounting Team


Focus: The Lease Coach is the go-to expert providing one-on-one consulting to restaurant tenants during the lease renewal or new lease negotiation process.

Meet with me: Leasing Restaurant Space, need a rent reduction on your lease renewal? The Lease Coach exclusively helps existing and startup tenants with all-new and lease renewal processes. Document reviews, negotiation, site selection. Before you sign a new lease or lease renewal speak with the expert one-on-one and receive a complimentary autographed copy of Dale Willerton’s book Negotiating Commercial Leases & Renewals FOR DUMMIES.

Dale Willterton
Founder, The Lease Coach


Focus: Seth is an expert in cost control, budget implementation, labor management and systems to simplify your daily process. Strong project management skills allow him to manage start-ups and help with the turn around along with leadership training.

Meet with me: Need a diverse array of industry knowledge including financial aspects, menu creation and costing, and service standards? Seth will work with you to help you reach your full potential in profit and leadership. Seth has helped to develop and open several new restaurants here in the Northwest. Working to help simplify the process and make it manageable, his understanding and solutions to your operations will be appreciated.

Seth Gruschow
Founder/Sales & Marketing, Togather Restaurant Consulting


Focus: Steven can help navigate through your technology needs and create efficiencies within your business through cutting edge technology solutions tailored to you.

Meet with me: Technology is ever changing, with new trends coming out around every corner- let Steven Shipe and his team of experts at Dell take the worry of IT off your plate and find the best technology solutions tailored to you and your business. From Point-of-Sale stations to cloud infrastructure solutions and all things in between, Dell can partner with your business to modernize your workspace and bring efficiency to the forefront. Need us to take a closer look? Along with meeting with Steven at the Northwest Food Show, you can schedule a complimentary onsite visit to your company nationwide for a full technology consultation.

Steven Shipe
Account Executive, Dell


Focus: Can you confidently identify food safety hazards and regulatory risks, then control them repeatably every day? Opening a new business, expanding your menu or operating model, and not sure which regulations apply?  Aspire Food Safety Solutions provides food safety and regulatory services to foodservice operators, retailers, food processors, caterers, mobile food operators, and vending machine operators of all sizes.

Meet with me: With more than 20 years’ experience as a former regulator and corporate food safety leader, Vanessa helps companies mitigate risk, navigate regulations, and bring innovation to market faster. She can provide guidance on food safety management systems, operating procedures, food safety behavior, sanitary design, public health crisis and emergency planning, and regulation for a new business, concept or market expansion.

Vanessa Bussiere, REHS
Founder & Principal Consultant, ASPIRE Food Safety Solutions LLC


Focus: Eric is a Certified Safety Professional (CSP) with over 30 years of experience in keeping workers healthy and injury free.

Meet with me: As a safety professional that is also an active skydiver, Eric knows the importance of managing risk. While everything we do has inherent risks, he believes that understanding the risks we take and applying that knowledge appropriately can allow us to live and work injury and illness free.

Eric Connelly, SAIF
Senior Safety Management Consultant, SAFE AND HEALTHY WORKPLACE CENTER, SAIF

McDonald Wholesale