Anner A. Vazquez is the school food service manager at Hamlin Middle School. His job duties include supervision of the food service staff, assigning and directing work, training and staff development. Vazquez is also president of the Orange County Schools Nutrition Association. Assistant Principal Elionexis Rodriguez said Vazquez does “great work” and has been dedicated since the school opened. “He is always attentive to the students and their needs,” Rodriguez said. “He always tries to make a connection with the students beyond the cafeteria line, engages in conversations and tries to find the students’ interests through conversations. Also, his attention to the Hamlin staff and activities is always present. He never says ‘no’ when the administration or any of our teachers approach him to provide food or prepare food to celebrate an event or occasion or for students in after-school activities such as choir concerts and other visual and performing arts events.” Vazquez’s team is an essential part of what he does, and he receives a lot of support from his team.
What brought you to your school?
I am a person who loves to see things through. Hamlin, being a new development area, is a great opportunity to demonstrate all my skills, qualities, values, interests and life experiences acquired in my 27 years of management work. In addition, while I was working at SunRidge Middle School with Principal McHale, she shared with me the excellent work qualities of Hamlin Middle School Principal Dr. Knight. I just knew that there was where I wanted to be.
What do you love most about your school?
The school’s faculty and administration involvement with students’ nutrition and food nutrition services staff, as well as the many different student nationalities. I truly enjoy learning about culture and ways of life — it gives me the knowledge to provide them with great meals.
What is your motivation?
I’m motivated by several things. First is the friendly environment and support of the school’s staff and administration; second is seeing the students form healthy eating habits with happy faces enjoying the food; and third, my amazing, dedicated, professional and fun employees.
What is the most rewarding part of your job?
The opportunity of running a great job operation while having outstanding family life balance.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
After my family and lovely dogs, I enjoy reading, watching learning videos and playing golf.
Who was your favorite teacher when you were in school? Why?
My high school math teacher, Mr. Linares, from Eloisa Pascual Bairoa 3 HS Class 1988. He noticed my passion for numbers and showed me to see it through different perspectives.
When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? Why?
I wanted to study sports medicine. While growing up I was deeply engaged with sports, participated in triathlons, tennis, cycling leading up to NCAA and professional volleyball.
What is your favorite children’s book and why?
“Oliver Twist,” because it showed me the necessities in life and family valor.
What are your hobbies?
Golf, playing with my dogs and spending time with friends.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?
Healing. I don’t like to see people struggle and suffer. I am a very sentimental person.
If you could only listen to three bands or artists for the rest of your life, what would they be and why?
Queen/Freddie Mercury, AC/DC and Imagine Dragons. I believe Queen and AC/DC music was ahead of their time and Imagine Dragons for their commitment to help sick children and youth depression awareness.
What was your go-to lunch as an elementary student? Any favorite snacks or special treats you remember?
Rice and beans with fruit mix cup. Hershey almonds.
What is your favorite holiday and why?
Christmas. The lights, decorations, music spirit, food, family and friends gatherings.
Who was your best friend when you were in school and why? Are you still in touch?
I don’t have a particular best friend. I spent my time with my sports teammates and am still in touch with several of them.
What were your extracurricular activities as a student? Did you win any accolades or honors?
I played baseball and volleyball. While in elementary, middle and high school I was selected every year to participate in the All-Stars baseball team. Playing volleyball, I was awarded multiple college scholarships.