Gwinnett’s Maxwell High School of Technology WINS BIG at the Inaugural USDA Southeast Regional Junior Chef Competition

(left to right): Keith Rogers (Chief of Staff, KY Department of Agriculture); Lauren Moore (KY Department of Education, Director of Operations for School and Community Nutrition); Ann Hamner (Business Support Analyst 3, GaDOE SNP); Laura Tanase (Farm to School Specialist, GaDOE SNP); Angélica Burgos (student, Maxwell High School of Technology “Bold and Fresh team); Chef Jason Smith (Food Network Star); Joyce Park, De’Avion Frezell and Preston Gouge, (students, Maxwell High School of Technology “Bold and Fresh” team); Amanda Williams (Maxwell High School of Technology Culinary Arts Instructor/FCCLA Advisor); Robin D. Bailey, Jr. Regional Administrator, Food and Nutrition Service, United States Department of Agriculture, Southeast Region); Erin Healy (Director, Office of Community Food Systems, United States Department of Agriculture).

LOUISVILLE (May 10, 2018) — The Maxwell High School of Technology “Bold and Fresh” team from Gwinnett County, Lawrenceville, Georgia, claimed the first Southeast Region Junior Chef Competition crown on Thursday May 10, 2018 at Sullivan University in Kentucky. Members of the Georgia culinary team are Preston Gouge, De’Avion Frezell, Angélica Burgos and Joyce Park. Amanda Williams is their Culinary Arts Instructor/FCCLA Advisor.
On March 14, the team placed first here in Georgia at the Farm to School, Shake It Up Student Chef competition. That win allowed them to advance and compete in the inaugural United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Southeast Regional Junior Chef Competition.

3. Judges for Junior Chef (left to right): Chef Jason Smith (Food Network Star); Chef Whitney Fontaine (Chef Instructor, Sullivan University); Elizabeth Goss (Tennessee Department of Education); Robin D. Bailey, Jr. (Regional Administrator, USDA Food and Nutrition Service, Southeast Region); Joi Parks (Regional Nutritionist, USDA Food and Nutrition Service, Southeast Region)

“Congratulations to Maxwell for earning the title of best culinary team in the Southeast,” Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said. “All the teams did an outstanding job of food preparation, presentation, and teamwork. We also commend all the parents, teachers, and advisors who helped them along the way. And we greatly appreciate Sullivan University for supporting Junior Chef from the beginning.”

Burrito Bowl
WINNER Bowl’d Farm Fresh Burrito Bowl

Eight states participated in the inaugural Southeast Region Junior Chef Competition – Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.
Each member of Maxwell High was awarded the offer of full scholarships and fees at Sullivan an estimated $60,000. Each member of the second place Montgomery County Team won a full scholarship offer from Sullivan at $52,000. The third-place team, Clyde’s Caliente Cowboys from Clyde A. Erwin High School in Asheville, North Carolina, each won a $20,000 scholarship offer from Sullivan.

The Southeast Region Junior Chef Competition was hosted by the Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) in partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS).  The competition teaches valuable skills in recipe development, food preparation, food safety, marketing, public presentation, organization, teamwork, and community involvement. At the same time, participating students learn about the importance of agriculture and the economic impact that purchasing local foods can have on communities.

For more information about the Georgia Student Chef Competition go to:

Second Annual Student Chef Competition Winners Announced

The second annual Shake It Up Farm-to-School Student Chef Competition was held Wednesday, March 14 at Bibb County Schools’ William S. Hutchings College and Career Academy. Student teams from the Dublin City, Baldwin County, Floyd County, Gwinnett County, Jackson County, Newton County, and Putnam County school districts competed for the top spots.

1st - Gwinnett County - Bold Farm Fresh Burrito Bowl
1st Bowl’d Farm Fresh Burrito Bowl
Gwinnett County Public Schools
Maxwell High School of Technology
Angélica Burgos, De’Avion Frezell, Preston Gouge
Amanda Williams, Culinary Arts Instructor/FCCLA Advisor

Maxwell High School of Technology, in Gwinnett County, took first place; each student received a $16,000 scholarship from Sullivan University in Kentucky and the team will move on to compete in the Southeast Regional Competition in Kentucky in May.

“The Student Chef Competition gives kids a chance to put into practice what they’re learning in the classroom,” State School Superintendent Richard Woods. “They’re helping us change the culture of school nutrition and creating fresh, delicious meals that incorporate local, Georgia grown foods – and can now be served in school cafeterias throughout the state. Every student participant exemplified initiative, teamwork, dedication, and problem-solving and I could not be more proud of their hard work.” Teams competed to develop a nutritious, student-friendly recipe that included Georgia grown foods and USDA Foods and could easily be incorporated into the school food service program. The competition consisted of a recipe contest and a cooking competition; a panel of judges rated students’ creations on taste, student appeal, presentation, and creativity. All competing recipes will be featured in the Student Chef Cookbook and promoted for use in school nutrition programs throughout the state.
Inaugural Student Chef Competition,

2nd Chicken Quesadillas
Putnam County Schools
Putnam County High School
Tykeya Reid, Khrislyn Jones, Kayla Russell
Penny Reynolds, Culinary Arts Teacher/SkillsUSA Advisor
3rd Sautéed Chicken Wrap
Jackson County Schools
Jackson County Comprehensive High School
Erin Cook, Jared Foster, Keely Cudd
Brooke Curtis, FACS Teacher/FCCLA Advisor

Improving Student Learning through Nutrition

Click here to read the entire op ed piece from Maureen Downey at the AJC.

“What is the Importance of Breakfast?”
Superintendent Dr. Mark Albertus CLICK HERE

Font Resize