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Wix retires after 24 years with schools
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Jean Wix is a name synonymous with food and nutrition in Warren County. Wix has been food service director for the county since 1990. During that time, she and her department have won many awards for their work.
It may be hard for someone to fill Wix’s shoes, but someone will have to try. Wix has decided this will be her last year as food service director. She will retire at the end of this school year.
“I want to express gratitude to my director of schools and the School Board for their continued support throughout the years. I have been blessed. I don’t know what I’m going to do. Things are going great. But, I’m just going to rest, I guess. I will miss the people. The people in the food service department are terrific. My boss is terrific,” said Wix. “I want the best for Warren County. They have been good to me. I want to see the food service program continue to grow and educate children.”
Director of Schools Bobby Cox said, “My experience with Jean is she has really done an outstanding job with our school nutrition department. She brought that department to an award-winning level. Across the state, people have come to me asking about her and her leadership. In my experience as administrator, she has always done an excellent job. She knows the guidelines from federal to state inside and out. I have depended on her guidance a lot. I will miss her. She will be missed by many. I wish her well.”
Wix came from Hardeman County where she worked for eight years as food service director. Prior to that, she taught school three years at Bradford, which is in Gipson County. Wix is certified in elementary education and vocational child care and food service.
Since Wix has been in food service, there have been many changes to the program.
“In the last couple of years, snacks have changed. Regulations are forever changing. It used to be easy to pick a menu using meat, bread, milk and two items from the fruit and vegetable group. Now, it must be meat, bread, milk, a fruit, a vegetable and over the course of the week we have sub-group of vegetables including dark greens, red/ orange, legumes and starch, among others,” said Wix. “Meal patterns have changed a lot. We have minimum and maximum calories we must use. We also have sodium restrictions and no trans fats now. Our snacks also have restrictions. We used to not have sugar restrictions.”
Wix said school meal prices have only increased one time since 1990. She said the price increased at that time because the federal government made the food service department increase meals by 10 cents. Today, pre-K through eighth grade meals cost $1.35 each. Meals at the high school cost $1.60.
Wix and her husband, Danny, moved to Warren County when Danny, a retired TBI special agent who worked undercover, was stationed in Warren, Coffee and Van Buren counties. He now works as a private investigator.
The couple plans on spending more time with their family, which includes four children, 13 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Wix is a member of New Hope Baptist Church where she actively works with the youth group. She also teaches a second grade Sunday School class.