ARAMARK and the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) announced the graduation of 23 Aramark Higher Education chefs and 17 Sports and Entertainment chefs from the prestigious ProChef Certification program.

These chefs, serving colleges, universities, conference centers and preparatory schools as well as stadiums, arenas and entertainment venues across the country, join more than 70 certified chefs from Aramark's Higher Education business and 85 certified chefs from Aramark's Sports and Entertainment business, which first enrolled in the CIA's ProChef program in 2008.

"We are so pleased that our partnership with Aramark continues to grow," says Brad Barnes, senior director of continuing education at the Culinary Institute of America. "The ProChef Certification process provides these already creative chefs with the additional skills, training and tools needed to excel in their careers." 

The CIA ProChef Certification program is a comprehensive professional-development and culinary skills verification program, which measures core culinary, managerial and financial acumen, including a chef's skill in taste, proper cooking methods, authenticity, plating, use of all ingredients, hygiene and disposal of food waste. 

"We are extremely proud of the chefs who worked so hard to achieve ProChef Certification and congratulate them on this outstanding accomplishment," says Chris Hackem, President, Aramark Higher Education. "Aramark's partnership with the CIA provides our chefs with the opportunity to hone their skills and culinary creativity, as well as to enhance the dining experience for our clients and customers."

The CIA ProChef Certification program, which recognizes proficiency in culinary arts, personnel management, and financial administration, consists of three levels of training with ProChef III being the highest, most prestigious designation.

The following Aramark Higher Education and Sports and Entertainment chefs received their ProChef I, ProChef II and ProChef III Certification:

ProChef I:
Higher Education Graduates

  • Kyle Wiens, California State  University-East Bay
  • Dan Mullins, Pacific University
  • Ann Kozina, Fluno Center for Executive Education at University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Casaundra White, Ross Center at University of Michigan, Ross School of Business
  • Christian Drouin, University of Florida
  • Anthony Gamino, Baylor University
  • Jim Bell, Southwestern Assemblies of God University
  • John Mann, Louisiana Tech University

Sports and Entertainment Graduates

  • Craig McAlister, Cedar Park Center
  • Raymond Dominguez, Coors Field
  • Samuel Beale, Columbus, GA Convention Center
  • Michael Husney, Quicken Loans Arena
  • Johnny Mulcahy, Fenway Park
  • Eladio Ruiz, Angels Stadium
  • Ronnie Simon, Cashman Field Complex

ProChef II:
Higher Education Graduates

  • Swen Altis, High Point University
  • Joe Bruno, Southeastern Louisiana State
  • Andrew Lucyshyn, Arizona State University
  • Edgar Portillo, Marymount Manhattan College
  • Nick Thompson, James L. Allen Center, Northwestern University 
  • Juan Vasquez, University of California- Irvine
  • James Vetter, James Madison University
  • Stephen Winterling, Georgetown University
  • Greg Schaub, Southeast Region, District Chef

Sports and Entertainment Graduates

  • Dominic Soucie, George R. Brown Convention Center
  • Cliff Johnson, Minute Maid Park
  • Eric Wallace, CONSOL Energy Center
  • Rich Montini, PNC Park
  • Todd Lyons, Citizens Bank Park
  • Julio Rodriguez, Citi Field
  • Mark Hoffman, Pennsylvania Convention Center
  • Michael Kain, Reilant Center
  • Peter DeCarl, Arena
  • Les Heydenerich, Phoenix Convention Center

ProChef III:
Higher Education Graduates

  • Mark Benanchietti, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  • Paul Calice,  University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill
  • Michael Gueiss, Johns Hopkins University
  • Bryan Kelly, University of Virginia
  • Jeff Lin, Villanova University Conference Center
  • Matt Thompson, Brandeis University
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