Hyde Welcomes New Chef Maureen (Mo) Kenney

Mo Kenney, Food Services Director
Mo Kenney, Food Services Director

Hyde School is happy to welcome Mo Kenney from Pawtucket, RI as the new Food Services Director. Mo joins us from the Hyde-Woodstock campus, where she previously was the Food Services Director.  When the campus passed hands to Woodstock Academy in 2017, she stayed on as the Food Services Director for Woodstock Academy until she got a call this past spring from Hyde’s Head of School Laura Gauld.

“I was honored to get the call from Laura,” Mo says. “When I was working for SAGE Dining Services at Hyde in Connecticut, I felt like I couldn’t have landed in a better place. While I understood the consolidation of campuses, it was still tough. I am very excited for the challenge of starting a new year at Hyde in Maine, where I will have the ability to make decisions and adjustments to keep the Hyde dining experience one of the attractions of the school.

Mo believes all foods have a place on a carefully constructed, balanced menu and subscribes to the philosophy “everything in moderation.” “I want everyone to come in and find something they will enjoy,” she says. She always has a protein-filled vegetarian dish, as well as multiple options for discriminating tastes. For example, if she is serving fish and chips, there will always be a baked as well as a fried option. She will have two soup options available each day, with one being gluten free, in addition to a well-stocked salad bar and sandwich station.

Mo is determined to make as many food options from scratch as possible. She cites salad dressing as something that they can easily make, and thereby surpass all the unpronounceable ingredients in the processed varieties. She is starting with making a Hyde Dining Hall variety of Ranch, Honey Mustard, and Blue Cheese. These will sit next to the phenomenal dressing supplied by alum Jimmy DiBattista ’94, who makes Jimmy’s Milan salad dressing out of Philadelphia.

While Mo is busy creating school-year menus, whipping up condiments from scratch, and setting up the dining hall, she is also busy with having a new house built. She and her partner are currently renting an apartment in Portland but plan to move in to their brand new house in Woolwich this fall.

“Portland is a lovely city,” Mo says, “but our dog Ayla can’t wait for the open space to run around in. We’re big hiking fans and looking forward to getting back to small-town living.”

Hyde School is very pleased that Mo decided to make the big move north and are looking forward to a wonderful new year with her heading up Food Services.