The professional kitchen is a team environment, full of unsung heroes– the working cooks who make it all possible. Every well-known chef has risen to the top of the profession with guidance and training from others. They have been mentored, prodded, encouraged, taught a skill, given a first job or a second chance.

Today, Chef Celebration Foundation of San Diego is passing on this tradition of learning and support to San Diego’s rising stars. 2012 marks the first year that Chef Celebration chose 12 culinarians, nominated by chefs in San Diego with whom they’ve worked, to go on a group trip to the Culinary Institute of America’s Greystone Campus in Napa Valley, CA for a week of intensive courses designed specifically for us! It was a great success and we are looking forward to the future trips, the friendships, and the learned skills that can only improve the community of future chefs in San Diego.

*Christopher J. Collins Foundation Scholarship Recipient

2012

Recipient

Ryan Lovecchio
Michael Reidy
Pablo Ibarra
Julie Weiss
Henry Wassink
Paulina Amador Pineda
Carlos Enriquez Jr.
Kyle Scott Kovar
Gregory Bouchard
Blake Leasure
Nicholas Jordan Fix*
Michael Welch

Restaurant

Rancho Valencia
Rancho Bernardo Inn
Terra American Bistro
Wild Thyme Catering Co.
Barona
Pamplemousse
Poseidon
La Valencia
Delicias / Kensington Grill
Sycuan Resort
Gabardine
Solace & the Moonlight Lounge

Chef

Eric Bauer
Nicolas Bour
Jeff Rossman
Dawn Parks
Benjamin Moore
Jeffrey Strauss
Jamal Mourad
Lance Repp
Paul McCabe/Hanis Cavin
Augie Saucedo
Brian Malarkey
Matt Gordon

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2011

Allison Howitt
Lhasa Landry
Joey Maniscalco
Colin Murray
Nathan Zel
Brian Cacatian
Tiago Battastini
Devin Cisneros

2010

Alfredo Castellanos
Gracie Wilson

2009

Gabriel Bonis
Andrea Aaron
Alberto Abostes
Israel Martinez
Stefan Vukotich

2008

John Harder

2006

Mike Englund
Jeff Heavey

2005

Justin Huntington
Mike Davis

2004

Violette Tafoya
Lillian Truong
Dan Tyrell

2003

Collin Wehner
David Campbell
Jerec Delfino

2002

Desiree Jones
Andrew Bard
Tarica Robbins
Michael Carey
Daniel Touchard
Aron Schwartz
Jose Perez
Jesus Morales
Benito Mirafuentes

2001

Ryan DeGoursey
Patrick J. Roy
Polly Sang
Robert Relaford
Dana Hangauer
Christopher Hasey
Jody Ann Ritacco
Margaret Barre
Rachel McElhaney
Lucy M. Price

2000

Ngoc Ai Van
Danielle Helm
Carmen Kessing
Jenna Lipska
Hugo Lee

1999

Ivan Christopher Blauw
Humberto Bahena
Jose DeLeon
Demetrio Diaz
Omar Hernandez
Jeffrey Hurlbut
Damaso Lee
Michelle Mah
Steven McGee
Jhonathan Mitchell

1998

Mark Max Elfmann
Sara P. DeFalco
Hanis Cavin
Don Ramsdale
Josh McGinnis
Armando Morales
Denise Roa
Felix Renteria
Jeffrey Thomas

1997

Gregory Joseph