The Santa Clarita Valley Food Services Agency — the agency which delivers food to all four elementary school districts in the SCV — has named Robert Lewis as its newest chief executive officer.
Lewis will replace Lynnelle Grumbles, who had been the CEO of the SCVFSA since 2014, and had taken over the position after her predecessor Pavil Matustik retired after 21 years. Over the years, the SCVFSA has grown to serving 24,000 students.
Lewis’ career in school district food service began in December 1990, when he began working in the Simi Valley Unified School District as the food services operations coordinator. In 1998, he transitioned to the director of food services for the Monrovia Unified School District where he stayed till 2008.
In January 2009, Lewis became the director of nutrition services for the El Monte City School District, a position he served in until being hired to his current position in the SCVSF.
Lewis graduated from Citrus College in 1999 after studying business administration, management and operations, and a master’s degree and Ph.D. from the University of La Verne in public administration.
“The first thing we want to do is listen to the children and see what they want,” said Lewis. “I call them our ‘student customers’ coming from a restaurant background … they are the sole reason we are in business. So we want to continue to listen to them, listen to what the trends are, what kind of food they’ve interested in.”
Lewis said a large part of his focus as the new CEO will be to continue the healthy eating practices that Grumbles had worked on during her time at the helm.
“I want to continue what she was doing,” said Lewis. “She did a wonderful job and when she retired and it was a natural fit … it’s really a great challenge because this is very unique to serve four school districts instead of one.