May 2, 2024 in News

From Mr. Mom to Senior Food Technologist, Bryan Dinquel Embraces Mentoring and the Big Picture

For Bryan Dinquel, the past several years has been an evolution at home and in the workplace.

He reminisces with a touch of self-deprecation, “Back in 2017, I landed a job at Excalibur Seasoning, and for the first six months, I had a lot to learn.” (He originally pursued print journalism in college.) “However, my love for food drove me to experiment with flavors in my own kitchen, drawing inspiration from the expertise of TV personality and food scientist, Alton Brown.

“Three years into my career, I was being tapped for a role in meat science for Excalibur, dealing with heavy-formulated meat products, regulatory limits, and usage rates. That was the direction I was headed before I took time off to focus on family.”

Dinquel became a “Mr. Mom” to his then infant son and the timing proved right. This was six months before the pandemic shutdown and eventual daycare closures, which eliminated a fallback childcare option for his family. Once his son turned 4-years-old, Dinquel was ready to re-enter the job market.

“I always assumed I would get back to work eventually, but I didn’t think Excalibur’s door would reopen,” says Dinquel. “I had kept in touch with Andrew Conrad, a friend of mine from high school who is their IT/Product Flow Coordinator, to ask about work opportunities. Coincidentally, the person with my job in the lab had recently departed, and Tyler Shepke, Excalibur’s R&D Manager and Certified Food Scientist, wanted me back in the same position and workspace.”

Dinquel returned to the R&D lab on August 21, 2023, and discovered his former role changed, but in a good way.

“I was no longer the perpetual new guy,” he recalls. “Instead, I was experienced. I came back in more of a senior position with a focus on mentoring and team building rather than purely technical aspects. Before, I was only focused on learning and what I was creating in the lab. Now, I have a big-picture view.”

Another big factor in his choosing to work for Excalibur Seasoning again? The small team environment is welcoming, he says, especially considering the company’s growth.

“Although we operate in a corporate setting, there’s a family-oriented approach to business here. The close proximity to managers makes communication easy. It’s an employee-friendly environment where you feel valued, and your concerns and opinions matter. It definitely makes Excalibur an enjoyable place to be.”