The lunch ladies set up trays and pass them out to students during D lunch. The lunch ladies make food throughout the day and then set up trays before students line up. (Rahma Shaikh)
The lunch ladies set up trays and pass them out to students during D lunch. The lunch ladies make food throughout the day and then set up trays before students line up.

Rahma Shaikh

Feeding the school

Get to know some of Hebron’s lunch ladies

May 10, 2023

May 5 marked National School Lunch Hero Day – a day of appreciating the people who serve the students in schools. To commemorate the day, get to know some of Hebron’s lunch ladies. 

Pei Cai

Manager Pei Cai grew up in China and lived there until she graduated high school, and moved to America in 2003. She attended community college and graduated from Dallas College’s North Lake campus.

Post-move, she got a job as a lunch lady at Independence Elementary in 2008 to provide for her kids, and then later transferred to Hebron.

“I really enjoy serving the kids,” Cai said. “My favorite part [of the job] is everything — I like every day. I feed the kids so they don’t go hungry and cook the best food I can [for them].”

Cai was an employee for 10 years until she got promoted to a manager.

“We have a good team,” Cai said. “Everybody has a really good relationship here. We communicate; if we have something happen, then we communicate it so we can keep a good relationship [with each other] and work.”

Brigitte Holder

Lunch lady and cashier Brigitte Holder was born and raised in Germany with her brother and sister. When she was 20 years old, she fell in love with an American man and has been living in America since. She joined Hebron in 2003 and became a lunch lady to be available for her three kids.

Holder was a stay-at-home mom for 13 years. Prior to being a lunch lady, she worked in customer service for an insurance company, and then at Tuesday Morning for a year. 

“A lunch lady is a really good job [for a mom],” Holder said. “You get off very early and you’re also off during the summer, spring break and all times when your kids are off.”

Holder said her favorite part of the job is getting involved with students by asking questions and being there for them.

“I’m not your teacher, I’m not your mother [and] I’m not your friend — I’m just a person that you can talk to,” Holder said. “Kids tell me stuff like ‘I got a new job,’ ‘my dad lost his job’ [or] ‘we’re moving to Chicago.’ They tell me happy and sad things, and that makes me feel good. One, they trust me and two, I can be there and listen to them — that’s very rewarding.”

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