Culinary Speaker Series

Students in baking class.

GRCC's Secchia Institute for Culinary Education and the American Culinary Federation (ACF) Greater Grand Rapids Chef's Association present the 2019 Winter Culinary Speaker Series. 

The 2019 Winter Culinary Speaker Series

  • Reception: 5:30 p.m.  | Introductions: 6:15 p.m. | Presentation: 6:30 p.m. | Questions/Answers: 7:30 p.m.
  • Location: GRCC Wisner-Bottrall Applied Technology Center, 151 Fountain Street NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503 - Room 130
  • For more information, contact the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education - (616) 234-3690 or

Monday, February 4, 2019

"Paths to Becoming a Chef"

Shawn Kohlhaas, President, ACF Greater Grand Rapids Chapter and

Werner Absenger, Ph.D., Program Director, Secchia Institute for Culinary Education

Looking to advance your career?  Not quite sure how to do that?  Join us to learn about the paths to becoming a chef and the pieces necessary to achieve that goal.  We'll talk about different certifications and academic degrees that help achieve your goals.

Reception sponsored by: Key Impact Group


March 11, 2019

"Zingerman's Building a Culture of Great Service"

Tabitha Mason, Trainer, ZingTrain

In 2012, Tabitha Mason was presented with the unique opportunity to serve as "Service Steward" for the entire Zingerman's organization.  In this role, she was responsible for overseeing and implementing Zingerman's nationally renowned approach to customer service for all 10 businesses.  She did this by analyzing and leveraging company-wide service data, managing internal customer service training and chairing a committee of service champions to execute company-wide service improvements.  Tabitha has continued her role as a trainer with ZingTrain, in which she shares the renowned Zingerman's approach to giving great service with businesses throughout the country.

Reception sponsored by: Way Point


April 1, 2019

"Creating Magic - Creating Outstanding Experiences and Positive Change"

Ken Wasco, Customer Effectiveness Manager, Gordon Food Service

Ken conducts hundreds of seminars and workshops on ways to achieve higher levels of personal effectiveness through an emphasis on communication skills across the food service industry. 

Reception sponsored by: Hormel and Fontanini