Dr. Mary L. Tanke is an Associate Professor of Human Resources Management in the School of Hospitality & Tourism Management at Florida International University, Miami, Florida. After receiving her bachelor’s degree from Florida International, she later went on to complete her master’s and Ph.D. degrees from Purdue University. This is Dr. Tanke’s 36th year of teaching Hospitality Management, which includes two semesters in Switzerland at the Centre International de Glion. She holds an FMP designation from the Educational Foundation of the National Restaurant Association and a CFBE from American Hotel & Motel Association’s Educational Institute. In 2001, she was named the Ernest R. Graham Distinguished Professor. In 2007, she was named Editor of the FIU Hospitality Review.
She has been an active participant in the Council on Hotel, Restaurant, and Institution Education (CHRIE) where she co chaired the Accreditation Committee for several years. Her work on this committee and her doctoral dissertation led to the formation of the Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality (ACPHA) where she served two terms as the founding chair. ACPHA is the specialized accrediting body for programs granting baccalaureate degrees in hospitality administration. Dr. Tanke has consulted with numerous hospitality programs both in the U.S. and Hong Kong in their self-assessment of program quality.
In 1984, while at Florida International University, Dr. Tanke developed the first course curriculum, for her ground breaking course in Multicultural Human Resources Management, in the history of hospitality management education. This course has since served as a model for hospitality management curriculums throughout the United States. In 1987 she received the Ryder System, Inc., Award of Excellence in Research/Scholarship and in 1991 was honored with the CHRIE Achievement award for her work in the development of accreditation and multicultural management for the hospitality industry and the academic community. In 1990, the first edition of her textbook titled Human Resources Management for the Hospitality Industry was published, the first industry specific HR textbook which devoted an entire chapter to cultural diversity in the workplace. The second edition of this text was released in 2001 and is currently under a third revision. In 1991 a second text, co-authored with Dr. Lendal Kotschevar, was published titled Managing Bar and Beverage Operations.
Dr. Tanke has developed workshop modulars and designed training programs for service industry professionals and employees on the subject of managing cultural diversity. She has worked with numerous leading companies and professional associations on recognizing the changing workforce and its’ impact on productivity. These organizations include ARAMARK; Business Dining Services, ARAMARK; Healthcare Nutrition Services, Concessions International, Elliot Associates, Fairfax County Public Schools, Healthcare Food Service Management Association, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Lee County School Food Services, and Women’s Food Service Forum. Working with top management down through employees she is known for her effectiveness in sensitizing the workforce in changing their attitudes in an increasingly culturally diverse environment. Mary is one of the few multiculturalists with both academic and service industry experience. With extensive research in this area she is able to demonstrate proven approaches to managing diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
In addition to Dr. Tanke’s educational background are twelve years of food service industry experience. Starting at Strongbow Turkey Inn in Valparaiso, Indiana, as a busgirl, she worked for several different companies, primarily in the back-of-the-house. Her years of industry work experience includes working Chef at the Alabama Hotel, Winter Park, Florida; cook at Valparaiso University; manager of the student lab-cafeteria at Purdue University; banquet Chef at Holiday Inn; assistant to the chef at the Depot, Miami Florida; and as a food specialist aboard Amtrak.