James Griffin


JWU Faculty Since 1989

Professor Jim Griffin

Contact Info


James Griffin is a professor in the Food & Beverage Management department at Johnson & Wales University. From 2012–14, he served as president and CEO of the Coolfish division of Slade Gorton & Co. Prior to joining Slade Gorton, Griffin spent more than two decades with Johnson & Wales University, serving in several senior roles including associate provost of the university and vice president and dean of academic affairs of JWU’s Denver Campus.

In addition to his work in higher education, Griffin has served as a consultant and owner of several food service related businesses. Griffin teaches courses that include FSM4061, FSM3012, FSM3001 and PHIL3040, and serves as a committee member to Ed.D. students.


  • EdD, Boston University
  • MS, Hospitality Administration, Johnson & Wales University
  • BS, Food Service Management, Johnson & Wales University

A JWU education remains transformative — it made me a professional. My primary goal with students is to help them find a career path that will lead them forward in life.

Scholarly Interests

I do extensive work in corporate strategy as well as sustainability and supply chain management working with local, national, and international organizations. My work takes me around the world particularly in the areas of sustainable seafood and aquaculture.


  • Advanced Food Service Operations Management
  • Advanced Menu Analysis
  • Food Service Management Systems and Human Resource Applications
  • Ethics Of Business Leadership

Professional Affiliations

National Restaurant Association
American Culinary Federation
American Marketing Association
Research Chefs Association


  • American Hotel & Lodging Association, Certified Hospitality Educator (CHE)
  • Harvard University Graduate School of Education, Management & Leadership in Education Certificate
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology - Sloan School of Management, Executive Certificate in Strategy, and Innovation



Dissertations And Theses Advised

  • Hollibaugh-Baker, M. (2015). The Relationship of Technology Use with Academic Self-Efficacy and Academic Achievement in Urban Middle School Students, Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Johnson & Wales University.
  • Kreiger, J. (2013). Faculty Beliefs and Practices about Writing Initiatives as Classroom Strategies and Institutional Objectives, Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Johnson & Wales University.
  • Pouravelis, C. (2012). Academic Achievement and Self-Efficacy of Graduate Nursing Students: A Comparison of Continuing and Returning Students, Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Johnson & Wales University.
  • Gauthier, A. (2012). Exploring Student-Faculty Interactions in and out of classroom Settings. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Johnson & Wales University.
  • Moriarty, E. A. (2011). Relationship of Helicopter Parenting on Autonomy Development in First-Year College Students, Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Johnson & Wales University.
  • Bell, C. (2010). Perceptions of Campus Subcultures at a Community College, Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Johnson & Wales University.

Honors And Awards

  • Global Education Award
  • Certificate of Appreciation – for service as volunteer director of Worldchefs Progastronomia. World Association of Chefs Societies. September 26, 2016.
  • Special Merit Award for service as Founding Board Member, Assoc. for Authentic, Experiential, & Evidence-Based Learning, March 2013
  • Top 40 under 40 “Emerging Business Leaders” in Colorado, Denver Business Journal, March 2006
  • Bell Ringer Award for Best Magazine Article: Internal Placement by the Publicity Club of New England with Johnson & Wales University’s public relations office, May 1998
  • Awarded Auguste Escoffier Chair in partnership with Les Amis d'Escoffier Society - College of Culinary Arts, Johnson & Wales University, May 1999

Q&A with James

At JWU, education is not confined to the four walls of the classroom. You’re not going to spend four years with your nose buried in a book, learning theories you may never get a chance to apply — you’re going to get out there and apply them, be it through internships, group projects, leadership opportunities, competitions and more.

How Did You Get Started?

I started my career in food service as a part-time day dish washer and steward for a small restaurant back in 1980 when I started high school. The owners were patient and trained the younger hourly staff members well. It was this training that helped launch my career and something I have always appreciated.

What Is Your Favorite Teaching Moment?

The best part of teaching is helping each student grow professionally while enrolled at JWU. As faculty, we see student growth happening all around us — it is incredibly rewarding. It is such a gift to spend time with students as each pursues their professional dreams.

What Advice Do You Have For Incoming Freshmen?

The most successful first year students are ones who make connections early in their experience — with fellow students, faculty, and members of the university community. When you first arrive at JWU, get involved — find something you are interested in and pursue it. Attend events in your residential hall, take time to introduce yourself to your faculty members, and safely explore the city with friends. And, most important, never hesitate to ask for help when you need it. You are surrounded by a supportive community interested in your development.

What College Do You Teach In?

College of Hospitality Management

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