In Loving Memory of Shelley Pedersen

In Loving Memory of Shelley Pedersen

Our NACE National community lost a legend on March 22, 2018.  Shelley Pedersen, CPCE was instrumental in the growth of our association and we are all better for knowing her.  Shelley joined NACE in 1984 and was active until her last day with us.  She accepted her first position on the National Board as a Regional Vice President, with the first class, in 1987.  Shelley had the privilege of being the first off-premise caterer to be elected as the NACE National President.  She also was the first two-term President in the Associations history.  In addition to NACE, Shelley was inducted into the Atlanta Chapter of Les Dames d ’Escoffier International (LDEI) and served as the Atlanta Chapter President, and served on the Advisory Board of Atlanta’s Allie Awards.

Education was where Shelley’s passion flourished.  She received her Certified Professional Catering Executive (CPCE) designation in 1994 and joined the Foundation Board in 2000 including being Foundation President in 2005 – 2007.  She was a huge advocate of the CPCE and spoke of it all the time.  She encouraged young and seasoned professionals to sit and study for the CPCE.  I remember when I received my CPCE designation in 2013 and who would have guessed, but a hand written congratulations notes from Shelley appeared in my mail. She was always and advisor for leaders throughout the industry; whether it was bending an ear, being a devil’s advocate or having a shoulder to lean on, Shelley was always there.  NACE National Past President, Kevin Brant, CPCE said “Shelley encouraged me to expand my journey through NACE and helped my find my way onto the National Board.  I will miss Shelley and know that I am a better leader after following in her footsteps.”

The number of committees and awards Shelley received are too many to count.  She received two Honorary Doctorate of Foodservice Medallions, the Allie Awards, Lifetime Achievement Award, and was inducted into NACE’s National Hall of Fame as well as was given the Icon Award.  As mentioned, she was in the off-premise catering business for many years at a few locations, but most notably she was the Owner / President of Beyond Cuisine for sixteen years.

All of that combined only spoke of Shelley’s amazing professional career.  She was survived by her husband, children and grandchildren.  She did succumb to pancreatic cancer, but not without an impressive fight for many years.  Her memory will live on in all of those that have been touched by her including all the current and future CPCE’s, past, current and future National Board and Foundation Members.  It is our duty to keep her memory alive.  I can speak for myself when saying I’ll do my best to make her proud of me and my colleagues.  May she rest in peace.

All my best,

Dana Blaugrund, CPCE

DFW NACE President 2010 – 2012

NACE National Board 2014 – 2016