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Delaware North’s CHEFS™ prepares the next generation of culinary talent

Our culinarians are at the heart of our business as a global hospitality and entertainment company — it only makes sense to invest in them at all levels. This spring, Delaware North established an industry-leading talent development program, the Culinary & Hospitality Excellence for Future Success CHEFS™, which launched this spring in seven hub regions across the United States.

CHEFS™ pairs promising emerging talent with seasoned executive chef mentors, who guide them along a 12-month journey of continuing education for future growth and development.

Created in partnership with the Culinary Institute of America, CHEFS is Delaware North's commitment to helping culinarians at all stages of their careers hone technical and leadership skills necessary to build our future talent pool. The emerging culinarians, hourly cooks and sous chefs, are elevated to salaried roles upon acceptance into the program. They also earn ProChef I or II certifications, and our executive chef mentors receive ProChef Certified Mentor designations through CIA- coursework taught in person and virtually.

Delaware North piloted the program in seven key markets where there is a significant presence with diverse food service operations:

  • Boston – company-owned-and-operated TD Garden; Banners Kitchen & Tap; Boston Aquarium; Boston Logan International Airport; Momosan Ramen Boston
  • Buffalo – Highmark Stadium, home of the Buffalo Bills; KeyBank Center, home of the Buffalo Sabres; Patina 250 at The Westin Buffalo; Buffalo Niagara International Airport
  • New York City – MetLife Stadium, home of the New York Giants; Stella 34; Lincoln Ristorante
  • Orlando/Jacksonville – Space 220 Restaurant and in Epcot at Walt Disney World; Morimoto Asia and Maria & Enzo’s at Disney Springs; TIAA Bank Field, home of the Jacksonville Jaguars
  • Northern California – Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite National Park
  • Dallas/Austin – Globe Life Stadium, home of the Texas Rangers; Austin-Bergstrom International Airport
  • Memphis – Southland Casino Hotel

“Delaware North is committed to working with key partners like the globally recognized Culinary Institute of America to create best-in-class, emerging talent opportunities for our associates,” said Lou Piuggi, vice president of culinary and food & beverage development.

“We want our Chef Mentors to be confident to support, train and inspire our Emerging Culinarians while advancing their own culinary skills and leadership capabilities.”

Photo caption: Delaware North emerging culinarians Felipe Figueroa, Nicholas Rios and Crystal Dion pose for a photo after completing a vegetable cookery practical exam at Maria & Enzo’s, Disney Springs in Orlando, Florida.