The Pines at Davidson Executive Chef
Executive Chef
The Pines at Davidson
Davidson, NC

                                  EXECUTIVE CHEF PROFILE: THE PINES AT DAVIDSON
                                                                     DAVIDSON, NC


Located on 140 acres in the charming college town of Davidson, North Carolina (just minutes from Lake Norman), The Pines at Davidson is searching for an executive chef (EC) to lead culinary operations for this beautiful and expanding continuing care retirement community. The Pines at Davidson is truly focused on exceeding residents’ expectations and providing employees with stability and quality of life.

The EC at The Pines at Davidson is a skilled and creative culinarian who is highly engaged, a positive motivator and collaborator, and a true team player and team builder. He or she is responsible for all aspects of culinary operations. This is an exciting opportunity to lead a professional and diverse team and contribute to the branding and roll-out of new and innovative dining concepts.


In July 1988, The Pines at Davidson (The Pines) opened its doors and has focused on meeting the physical, emotional, social and spiritual needs of their residents. The Pines began as an idea in the hearts and minds of residents who were members of Davidson College Presbyterian Church; a vibrant community of active individuals who enjoy an independent lifestyle of social and recreational activities.

People love living in Davidson and the surrounding communities. Beautiful shops, unique restaurants, friendly people and many opportunities offered by Davidson College make this a desirable community in which to live. But until 1988, residents had to leave the area if they wanted to live in a retirement community. A partnership of volunteers, friends and members of Davidson College Presbyterian Church and Davidson College created this vibrant senior living campus in their college community.

The Pines has an active Community Center which houses the main dining room, café, private dining room, and beverage lounge, as well as a multi-purpose room, library, arts and crafts room, media and game room, branch bank, woodworking shop, and barber and beauty shop.

The Apartment Building, Cottages and Villas include 250 independent living accommodations, various residential lounges, billiard room, computer room, laundry rooms and resident storage areas.

The Schramm Health Center is comprised of the Workman Wellness Center and assisted living and nursing accommodations (30 and 51 beds, respectively, prior to the expansion). A new two-story addition to the nursing unit in the Health Center will open next fall.


Davidson, North Carolina is a small college town that is located 20 miles north of Charlotte. Davidson is home to Davidson College as well as a quaint downtown main street with shops, restaurants, and an active town green (used for concerts and festivals).

Located just minutes from Davidson is beautiful Lake Norman – the largest man-made lake in North Carolina with 520 miles of shoreline. The lake offers water sports and activities, lakeside dining and nature excursions.


To provide high quality housing, healthcare and other services that exceed residents' expectations.

  • Extraordinary level of service to residents.
  • Exemplary stewardship of financial and physical assets.
  • Kindness, compassion, respectfulness.
  • Honesty, integrity, transparency.
  • Balanced consideration of the needs of all constituents.
  • Stability, security, safety.
  • Lifelong personal learning and growth.
  • Delighted residents who are The Pines’ best ambassadors.
  • High quality health care and other services.
  • A caring, talented and loyal staff.
  • State-of-the-art facilities.
  • Strong community relations with Davidson College and the local communities.
  • An innovative culture and a spirit of inquiry that ensures success into the future.
  • Highly effective board governance.
  • Financial strength, enabling financial security and comfort for residents while attracting and retaining high performing staff.

The Pines provides residents with a variety of dining venues and menu choices. Independent living residents can dine at in the formal dining room (enjoying either waited table service, buffet or a combination of both). For more casual fare, residents dine in the Café and residents can also order to go meals or have their meal delivered to their residence.

Currently, The Pines offers 240 different entrees in two seasonal five-week menu cycles accenting the spring/summer and fall/winter seasons – plus a generous selection of items available daily. Rotating events include pasta stations, bountiful brunches and cuisines inspired by Argentina, the south of France and other international locales.

Dishes are prepared with health consciousness, freshness and quality in mind. Recipes are designed to take advantage of the latest medical studies including foods that may prevent heart disease and Alzheimer’s.

Exciting new dining offerings await residents once the current construction/expansion efforts are completed. These include a market-place styled café where fresh food is ordered and prepared to residents' specifications from a variety of popular stations, such as an open hearth oven, Asian wok, chef's exhibition station, char grille, rotisserie oven, hand-crafted salad bar, and in-house bakery and desserts; a pub offering light meals and adult beverages; and a coffee and ice cream kiosk for snacks and prepared items that can be purchased to “grab and go.”

To make these dining changes possible, the existing Davidson Room will be repurposed for dining use and a large replacement gathering room will be added at the back of the Jetton Community Center. The new Davidson Room will be equipped with partitions enabling concurrent events to be held when demand is high. The new Davidson Room will include a multi-purpose space on the lower level. By creating flexible space, The Pines will be able to meet the diverse preferences of active residents while maintaining the intimate feel of the community.

Dining at the new Health Center for assisted living and skilled nursing residents will include a common kitchen, dining and community space for each of four neighborhoods. The updated neighborhood design will enable residents to benefit from a smaller, more intimate sense of community, enhancing their quality of life by encouraging more activity and greater engagement.

  • 395 residents (320 Independent Living and 75 Health Center residents); current expansion project will add 100 residents (76 independent living and 24 Health Center residents)
  • $3.2M F&B expense budget
  • 44 FTE’s F&B employees (25 FT, 65 PT); current expansion project will add 13 additional FTE’s to the Culinary and Dining Services department
  • 2 dining rooms (waited table service dining and café); current expansion project will add three new dining venues: the Marketplace (will replace the Café), the Pub and an ice cream/coffee kiosk

The executive chef reports to the director of culinary and dining services. After the expansion, the EC will lead the team of 27 kitchen employees. The executive chef also collaborates with the registered dietitian regarding clinical, therapeutic and regulatory issues.



The executive chef is responsible for the overall operation of the Dining Services production. The executive chef will work closely with the director of culinary and dining services and culinary staff while collaborating with other departments to deliver an exceptional experience and promote the highest standards of service delivery for residents of The Pines.

The executive chef will be responsible to emulate the values and support the strategic initiatives of The Pines.

In addition to the normal and customary responsibilities and regulatory obligations, the executive chef will be crucial to direct the following:
  • Consistently exceed resident and guest expectations for quality, taste, presentation, variety and creativity.
  • Achieve The Pines' goals and measurable objectives in a manner that embodies The Pines' core values.
  • Focus on ensuring consistency and the highest quality resident experience by evaluating and setting appropriate and necessary standards of operation, execution and delivery within the culinary operation; taking ownership for the entire experience from production to final delivery of the end-product, while working closely with the FOH team.
  • Assist in preparing for and implementing the transition of culinary operations to the new dining venues in independent living, assisted living and nursing.
  • Focus on delivering consistency and the highest quality meals across all venues including the assisted living and Health Center neighborhoods.
  • Learn residents’ names and culinary and dining preferences. Understand the residents in order to meet their dietary needs and understand what matters most to them. Encourage resident engagement in the culinary program by offering cooking classes, action stations, etc. Earn resident trust by instilling confidence through enhanced operations and visibility.
  • Evaluate and continue to develop, train, cross-train and mentor the team while promoting fairness and consistency within.
  • Continue to attract, develop and promote high quality staff. Develop team members’ skills and abilities and continue to create a culture among the staff that encourages creativity and passion for the work that they perform and respect for fellow employees.
  • Manage to budgeted food and labor goals.
  • Organize logistics and build efficiencies for delivering high quality and creative meals through the multiple a la carte outlets, banquet spaces, carry out and delivery.
  • Establish approaches that enhance employee engagement and job satisfaction.


The executive chef must be a person whose personal and professional life exemplifies the importance and dignity of service. By example and by leadership and direction, the executive chef is a person of high integrity who is confident, relaxed, and positive in his or her approach to issues and people, and capable of instilling a service ethic in all health management and staff.
  • The ideal candidate will be an experienced executive chef with a minimum of four years’ progressive experience at club, hotel and/or resort restaurants that are known for high-level, quality food and beverage programs and exemplary service.
  • A two-year certificate or degree in culinary arts or related field and/or a graduate from an accredited apprenticeship program is require
  • Certified Executive Chef (CEC) certification (that is kept current) with the American Culinary Federation (ACF) is preferred.
  • Certification in food safety is required (ServSafe).
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills is important.
  • Warm, outgoing and compassionate personality with strong leadership, teamwork and change management skills is important.
  • Computer literacy is required, which includes, but is not limited to, the Microsoft Office suite.

Salary is open and commensurate with qualifications and experience and will be near the top among North Carolina Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC’s) and competitive with local companies. The Pines offers an excellent benefit package including vacation, holidays and sick days, medical insurance (Pines pays about 90% of cost of employee-only coverage), a defined contribution retirement plan offering employer and voluntary employee contributions, short and long-term disability, life and AD&D insurance, voluntary dental and supplemental life insurance is also available.


Please upload your resume and cover letter (in that order) using the link below.  You should have your documents fully prepared to be attached when prompted for them during the online application process. 

Preparing a thoughtful letter of interest and alignment, clearly articulating your “fit” with the profile and the above noted expectations and requirements is necessary. 

Your letter should clearly articulate why you want to be considered for this position at this stage of your career and why The Pines at Davidson and the greater Charlotte area will likely be an ideal situation for you, your family and the community if selected.

IMPORTANT:  Save your resume and letter in the following manner:
“Last Name, First Name Resume” &
“Last Name, First Name Cover Letter The Pines at Davidson”
(These documents should be in Word or PDF format)

Note: Once you complete the application process for this search, you are not able to go back in and add additional documents.

If you have any questions, please email Holly Weiss:


Lisa Carroll, Search Executive
561-596-1123 – Jupiter, FL

Sam Lindsley, Search Executive
216-509-2250 – Medina, OH



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