Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis Visits The Collins College

Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis Visits The Collins College

The Collins College of Hospitality Management hosted Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis on Aug. 23 during her visit to Cal Poly Pomona (CPP), one of her stops in her 23-campus tour of the Cal State University system.

Kounalakis, the first woman to hold the post as the state's lieutenant governor, is no stranger to Cal Poly Pomona. She spoke at the May 2019 commencement ceremony of the College of Letters, Arts, and Social Sciences, and serves on the CSU Board of Trustees. She was the U.S. ambassador to Hungary under the Obama administration (2010-2013); and in 2014 was appointed by then-Gov. Jerry Brown to lead the California Advisory Council for International Trade and Investment, overlapping with her tenure as a Virtual Fellow at the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Intelligence and Research (2014-2017) where she specialized in international trade and immigration. She is currently a director of the Association of American Ambassadors and an Ambassadors Circle advisor for the National Democratic Institute.

Her three-hour itinerary was designed to showcase programs and facilities unique to Cal Poly Pomona: the award-winning Student Services Building designed by CO Architects to meet Platinum LEED standards; the College of Business Administration for a presentation on Cybersecurity and Big Data; AGRIscapes, home of the CSU Agricultural Research Institute; the Lyle Center, the CSU system's  first carbon-neutral facility; and our very own Restaurant at Kellogg Ranch (RKR), recipient of multiple Diners' Choice Awards, and operated and managed by students here at The Collins College.

Collins College Dean Lea Dopson accompanied Kounalakis during her tour of the RKR which is operated and managed by students. The restaurant embodies Cal Poly Pomona’s learn-by-doing tradition and is a central component to The Collins College of Hospitality Management’s curriculum. Undergraduate students sharpen their professional experience by providing excellent guest service, preparing quality food, and creating and executing strategic restaurant management plans. They rotate weekly through various positions in both the front of the house and back of the house in order to learn all aspects of a hospitality operation. 

We are thankful that The President’s Office has chosen our Restaurant at Kellogg Ranch as an exemplary example of CPP’s “polytechnic advantage.”  A big thank you to The RKR faculty who generously agreed to provide food and assisted in the touring along with Dean Dopson. We also thank our Student Services Coordinator, Carolina Sanchez in helping us get students involved with this tour.