What made you want to get into the food industry?
- When I was eight years old, I watched my grandmother make eclairs. I just remember wanting to do that. I did not know at the time what a chef was, but I knew that is what I wanted to do.
Have you worked anywhere outside of the classroom?
- I have 27 years of comprehensive culinary and food service industry experience. I have worked in the foodservice and hospitality industry, in hotels, restaurants, and resorts. I have also worked with Guy Fieri as a kitchen manager. I have worked in many places throughout Florida and the Bay Area.
What is your favorite part about cooking?
- My favorite part about cooking is feeding people. I like seeing people enjoy what I make. I enjoy seeing people enjoy my food when I know that I put my own spin on it and that the food is my own.
When cooking for the first time, what is one thing that you want your students to remember?
- I want them to remember that they are ultimately applying skill and knowledge and that as you continue to do something, you will improve over time.
What kinds of food are you planning on having the students make this year?
- We will do an Asian and Latin unit. I hope to also do a Cuban unit. I am also planning on doing a pasta unit, as well as a pizza unit. My students will also make their own hamburgers, including their own buns, patties, and condiments. My students made soup for October, pies for November, and we will finish out the year by doing Cookie Mania.
What is your favorite part of the job?
- My favorite part of my job is watching my kids grow with knowledge and skill. I always strive to have my kids be better than me. I have been lucky enough to see this happen.
Do you have any aspirations to go beyond the classroom and back into a professional kitchen?
- Ever since I was little I wanted to open my own restaurant. If I ever left the classroom, I would want to work for myself.