Spotlight On: David Hill

April 17, 2020


David Hill, director of UNH dining

Name: David Hill 

Department: UNH Hospitality 

Role at UNH: Director of Dining 

Year Started at UNH: 2001

What does being healthy look like to you? 
Being healthy is about being physically fit as well as mentally fit. It includes diagnosed good health from a medical perspective and a feeling of satisfaction with work, family, social connections, and interests. 

What do you do to keep UNH healthy? 
As the director of dining, I am in a great position to impact health on campus. My role is to ensure that a variety of menu options are available to promote healthy lving and also to assist in educating our guests on  the availability of those healthy choices. Dining’s role is to also to offer a social setting where people can connect and rejuvenate from academia and the stresses it can cause.

How do you stay fit? 
I stay fit by being physically active when I can. This includes walks across campus and more intense gym workouts at least 3 times per week. I try to stay busy with home projects and make time for relaxation and fun with family and friends.

Do you have any tips for eating healthy?
I try to be mindful with my food selections, choosing leaner proteins and vegetables and limiting carbs. Eating in a dining hall every work day can be tempting, so it is important to be vigilant. I recommend choosing good fats like olive oil and being aware of sodium levels in foods. I also think limiting alcohol consumption assists in promoting healthfulness, which admittedly I am not always the best at. 

How do you find motivation to stay healthy and active on campus? 
I find motivation by taking time to get up form my office desk to interact with guests and walk through the dining facilities. It is surprising how many steps I can get in by doing so. I am always immersed in food and menu planning, so I am constantly reminded of what a healthy diet is. A lot of my strategic planning involves initiatives such as “Menus of Change” (healthy sustainable menus) and I am an innovator of the “Wildcat Plate.” These help me stay focused and motivated - plus I have a great relationship with Healthy UNH.

Have you seen or felt any improvements to your physical or mental well-being after making positive changes in your life? 
Definitely. When I put effort into improving my physical or mental wellness, the improvement is clear in how I feel about myself and those around me. 

Do you have any positive words of encouragement for others on campus to create a healthier lifestyle?
I would say that if you truly wish to improve yourself, both physically and mentally, you can’t overreach initially. Focusing on small increments of improvement is a good way to start. When you see positive results, I think more motivation comes. It's important to educate yourself on a healthy diet and lifestyle, and be deliberate in choices both in what you put in your body and in those you choose to surround yourself with.

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