Matt Dye, Ocean Center
Catering Sales Manager
Daytona Beach, Florida
Resume: Matt Dye has sampled much of the catering world, bussing tables, dishwashing, serving, bartending, managing, and working in operations and sales. Dye, who has a degree in food and resource economics, leapt from an entry-level position at Florida’s Stetson University to managing its catering department in just two years. In 2011, he moved closer to home to manage catering sales for Ovations Food Services at the Ocean Center in Daytona Beach.
Career Highlight: A sports fanatic, Dye planned and served all the pre-game meals for the 2006 and 2007 University of Florida Men’s Basketball national champtionship team. Sitting on the sidelines chatting with former UF football start Tim Tebow is high on Dye’s best-days list.
Inspiration: “Someone once asked Joe Dimaggio why he hustled on plays that had little effect on a game’s outcome or on his team’s standing. Joe replied, ‘Because there’s always some kid who may be seeing me for the first time. I owe him my best.’ This quote relates to our industry because every impression counts. Clients want the best for their groups and we owe them the best.”
Advice: “Always support and praise the team around you.”
Industry Confession: Delivering breakfast for the grand reveal of a venue’s remodel, Dye spilled 10 gallons of coffee when the catering cart hit a bump on a ramp, which he quickly cleaned with starch-white table linens. Luckily, the center’s director, who watched it all from his office overlooking the lobby, found the humor in it.
Hidden Talent: Dye has talent on the golf course and in home remodeling, but they’re not exactly hidden.
What Friends Say: Lori Hunter, director of sales at the Ocean Center, says, “I have never had the pleasure of working alongside someone who is as passionate and excited about what he does. Matt’s positive energy is contagious and he inspires everyone around him. His creativity constantly pushes us to achieve a higher level of excellence.”
—Katherine Manfredi, CMM