Specialty Spotlight


Specialty Spotlight


Specialty Spotlights allowed attendees to ask questions and engage with an industry expert to learn about their career experience, area of expertise and insider tips that will help you advance your career. Symposium attendees may access the recordings from the Specialty Spotlights by visiting the event platform and visiting "All Sessions".

Meet our Industry Experts!


Wednesday, March 3
5:30 – 6:30 pm central time

Specialty Area: Working with the Pros (Football)
Industry Expert: Leslie Bonci, MPH, RDN, CSSD, LDN

Leslie J. Bonci , MPH,RD,CSSD, LDN, is the owner of Active Eating Advice- be fit, fed, fearless- a nutrition consulting company and is the co-founder of Performance365- a sports nutrition consulting company. She is the sports dietitian for the 2020 SuperBowl Champions Kansas City Chiefs.

Leslie presents nationally and internationally on topics such as Sciensationalism, nutrition misinformation, Performance Nutrition and Supplements. She also does the media training for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Spokesperson program.

She is the author of Sport Nutrition for Coaches and the American Dietetic Association Guide to Better Digestion and co-author of Run Your Butt Off, Walk Your Butt Off, the Active Calorie Diet and Bike Your Butt Off.

She has authored chapters for sports medicine and sports nutrition manuals. Leslie is also a blogger for US News and World Report Eat + Run and regularly appears on KDKA-TV, Pittsburgh Today Live show as well as guest sports on local and national radio programs.

She likes to engage, educate and entertain her virtual and visual clients and audiences with facts over fallacy, evidence over nonsense and provide realistic, achievable and actionable advice.

Specialty Area: Athletes and the Arts
Industry Expert: Yasi Ansari, MS, RD, CSSD

Yasi is a Registered Dietitian, and a Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics, based in Los Angeles, California. She specializes in nutrition for sports performance and eating disorders. Growing up as a dancer, she understood early on how important nutrition was for long practice and rehearsal days! Through one-on-one and team counseling, she helps those she works with build healthy relationships with food and empowers them through nutritional practices that nourish, and help them feel their best during training.

Through the Sports, Cardiovascular and Wellness Nutrition (SCAN) dietetic practice group, Yasi collaborates with the Athletes and the Arts initiative to help create educational content and resources to meet the nutritional and health needs of performing arts athletes.

In addition, Yasi is a National Media Spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. She works with the media to help debunk nutrition myths and educate large audiences on evidenced-based nutrition practices.
Yasi has previously worked as the Assistant Director of Performance Nutrition at UC Berkeley Athletics, Clinical Nutrition Coordinator/Sports Dietitian for UCLA Athletics, Sports Dietitian for California State University Long Beach Athletics and Clinical Dietitian for Hoag Hospital in Newport Beach. She is a graduate of the University of California – Los Angeles and earned a master’s degree from California State University – Northridge.

Specialty Area: Nutrition Communications & Private Practice
Industry Expert: Cara Harbstreet, MS RD LD

Cara Harbstreet is a Kansas City based Registered Dietitian and nationally-recognized food and nutrition expert. She obtained a Bachelors of Science in Dietetics and Nutrition from Southeast Missouri State University. She went on to complete her Dietetic Internship and Masters of Science in Dietetics and Nutrition at The University of Kansas Medical Center. Upon completion, Cara worked in community nutrition, corporate wellness, retail settings. She later worked with the Endocrinology Department of a regional pediatric medical center and provided inpatient and outpatient support to children and families in the largest non-surgical specialty area. In 2016, Cara founded her private practice and began focusing on sports nutrition, intuitive eating, and applying the Health At Every Size model for clients in the Kansas City area. Since then, she has expanded into virtual and telehealth services and serves as a consultant and nutrition communications expert. Cara is also an active volunteer in the dietetics field, serving as a multi-year Board Member for the Kansas Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics in addition to her role with SCAN.

Thursday, March 4
4:45 pm – 5:45 pm central time

Specialty Area: Collegiate Performance Nutrition at a Large Division 1 School 
Industry Expert: Katie McInnis PhD, RD, LD

Katie McInnis graduated from Emory University with a degree in psychology. During her time at Emory she was a two-sport athlete in both basketball and track and field, where she was an eight-time all-conference athlete and a two-time conference champion and was recently inducted into the hall of fame.

Following college, she worked for both the Atlanta Falcons and Houston Texans in the marketing department but ultimately decided to return to school to pursue a career in nutrition. In 2010, she was accepted to the doctoral program at The University of Texas at Austin in Nutritional Sciences where she was the recipient of five fellowships and awarded one grant to support her research. While in graduate school she became a registered and licensed dietitian.

Katie joined the performance nutrition team at The University of Texas in 2014. She has worked with every team on campus and currently works with the volleyball, baseball, track as well as the men and women’s tennis teams. Her area of expertise and interest in nutrition and injury.

Specialty Area: US Olympic Team Sports
Industry Expert: Shawn Hueglin, PhD, RD, CSSD

Shawn has practiced as a sport dietitian for over 15 years. She is currently a Senior Sport Dietitian with the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC). She primarily supports team sports, specifically teams located in southern California. The sports she spends most of her time with include indoor and beach volleyball and water polo. Prior to the USOPC, Shawn was an Assistant Professor of Kinesiology at California State University, Long Beach. She has extensive experience providing nutrition consulting to recreational, collegiate, and Olympic level athletes. Shawn has supported athletes competing in three Olympic Games and two Pan American Games.

Specialty Area: Military Performance/Tactical Nutrition
Industry Expert: Lindzi S. Torres, Maj, USAF, BSC

Lindzi_Torres.jpgLindzi currently serves on active duty at Joint Base San Antonio, Texas, as the Operations Officer for the Special Warfare Human Performance Squadron, USAF. In addition, she serves as the military Chair for the DoD Performance Nutrition Working Group. She established the first AF active duty Performance Dietitian position and Performance Nutrition program for the Special Warfare (Air Force Special Operations) training enterprise overseeing a team of 9 nutrition professionals, $1.1M annual operation budget in support of 560 operators and support staff, 1.1K trainees, over 16 programs across 10 states. Lindzi has experience in various areas of dietetics, to include health promotion, public health nutrition, clinical dietetics, disordered eating, and sports/performance nutrition. She managed the largest overseas USAF health and wellness center nutrition program and deployed for 6 months to Afghanistan in support of Operation: ENDURING FREEDOM as the sole dietitian for all US military and coalition forces in theatre.

Lindzi has been involved in various research projects, most notably in a grass-roots research project focusing on decreasing protein-calorie/energy malnutrition through plant-based nutrition in rural Tanzania and a study investigating cardiovascular biometrics and their relationship to vitamin D status with an NFL football team. She earned a BA in physical education with a minor in psychology and coaching at the College of Idaho, a MS in nutrition at the University of the Incarnate Word, a MPH in health promotion and behavioral sciences from the University of Texas Health Science Center, and completed her dietetic internship with the United States Military Dietetic Internship Consortium at San Antonio Military Medical Center.

Friday, March 5
4:00 pm – 5:00 pm central time

Specialty Area: Pro Baseball
Industry Expert: Roberta Anding, MS, RD/LD, CSSD, CDE, FAND

Registered Dietitian
Clinical and Sports Dietitian-Corporate Programs
Assistant Professor, Department of Orthopedic Surgery

Roberta Anding, RD is the clinical and sports dietitian for the Baylor College of Medicine Corporate Programs team. She is an Assistant Professor in the Baylor College of Medicine Department of Orthopedic Surgery. Roberta is faculty at Rice University where she serves as the Sports Dietitian for the Rice Owls. She is the former sports dietitian for the 2017 World Champion Houston Astros, Houston Texans NFL franchise and the Houston Ballet.

Roberta has been honored with the SCAN (Sports, Cardiovascular and Wellness Nutrition Dietetic Practice group) Achievement Award in 2011. She received the Texas Distinguished Dietitian Award in 2008, and the Texas Dietetic Association Media Award in 2006. For the past nine years, Roberta was Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Media Spokesperson for Houston and remains active in the Houston and national media.

Specialty Area: D2 Small Programs (small DI/DII/DIII), Private Practice, Academia, Applied Research
Industry Expert: Christine Karpinski, PhD, RD, CSSD, LDN

Christine Karpinski, PhD, RD, CSSD, LDN
Board Certified Sports Dietitian
Professor, Chair, Department of Nutrition
West Chester University
Chair – Sports, Cardiovascular, Wellness Nutrition (SCAN)

Dr. Karpinski is an exercise physiologist and registered dietitian and is Professor and Chair of the department of Nutrition at West Chester University. She is a board-certified specialist in Sports Dietetics (CSSD). Chris earned her BS at West Chester University in exercise science and played field hockey and lacrosse. She earned her Master’s degree from Immaculata University and her PhD from Rutgers University with her doctoral research project involving the athletes at WCU. In addition to her teaching and Chair responsibilities, Dr. Karpinski has developed a comprehensive Sports Nutrition program as part of WCU Student Athlete Success (SAS) program at WCU. Under the supervision of Dr. Karpinski, a combination of undergraduate students, graduate students, and dietetic interns provide nutrition education and fueling for the WCU athletes, and conducts research in this area. She is currently serving as the Chair of the Sports, Cardiovascular, and Wellness Nutrition dietetic practice group (SCAN), a 5,000-member dietetic practice group. She is a member of ACSM, PINES, and CPSDA. She is nationally renowned for publishing and presenting on the topic of providing collegiate sports nutrition services for small budget programs and the critical need to hire sports and human performance dietitians. Dr. Karpinski is the editor-in-chief for “Sports Nutrition: A Handbook for Professionals”, 6th edition, which was published in September 2017.

The WCU Sports Nutrition Education and Fueling Program: A food first, evidence-based approach helps guide student-athletes towards making healthier food choices that will properly fuel them for their specific sport. The Fueling Program involves distributing healthy snacks to the athletes either at practice or for games and “Go Bags” for healthy snacking on the bus for away games – or for athletes who are running from practice straight to class for the evening. The Nutrition Education Program includes: Q & A sessions, team talks, individualize counseling, cafeteria tours, grocery store tours, restaurant/convenience store lists, cooking demos, kitchen makeovers, diet analysis, calculation energy/macronutrient needs, dietary supplement reviews, and Bod Pod testing/interpretation.

Specialty Area: Director of Performance Nutrition
Industry Expert: Caroline A. Mandel, MS, RD, CSSD

Caroline Mandel is in her twentieth year as the Director of Performance Nutrition at the University of Michigan Athletic Department. Originally from Columbus, Ohio, Caroline earned her undergraduate degree in Exercise Physiology from the University of Massachusetts where she was a Varsity swimmer. She completed dual Masters of Science degrees in Kinesiology and Public Health Nutrition from the University of Michigan. She is a Registered Dietitian and a Board Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics. In addition to serving as the CPSDA Scholarship & Awards committee from 2012-2016, Caroline was elected in 2019 to the SCAN Executive Committee Board of Directors for a two-year term as Board Secretary. Before joining the Michigan Athletics Student Athlete Health and Welfare team, Caroline was a Nutrition Specialist in Preventive Cardiology, an outpatient clinic of the University of Michigan Health System. In addition to her work with the athletic department, she lectures on a variety of performance nutrition topics locally and nationally. Mandel was recognized for her achievements in sports and cardiovascular nutrition, becoming the Michigan Dietetic Association’s Recognized Young Dietitian of the Year for 1994 and Dietitian of the Year for 1999. She was the 2014 CPSDA Service Award recipient. Caroline and her husband Scott live in Ann Arbor with their daughters Hailey and Leah.