By Michael Ty, CEC, AAC
There is still time to make plans to attend the
2010 ACF National Convention at the Anaheim
Marriott in Anaheim, Calif., Aug. 2-5. Register
online at www.acfchefs.org by midnight July 11,
or register on-site at the convention.
We kick off the convention July 31 with Chef
Outreach to the Community, a Chef & Child
service day. ACF volunteers will make a
difference by teaching nutrition to low-income
families at Hermosa Village. The event begins
at 9 a.m. with breakfast. Participants will be
bused to Hermosa Village, where we plan
to conduct nutrition activities geared toward
kids for approximately 100 community
residents. To participate, register by July 15 at
www.acfchefs.org or with Michelle Whitfield
at (904) 484-0202.
ACF members have always been involved with
ensuring that children get good nutrition and
that their parents receive information about
healthy lifestyles for families. Our involvement
with the Chefs Move to Schools program is
taking that involvement a step further. We can
all be proud of the 60 ACF members who
were among the 600-plus chefs at the White
House June 4 to kick off the latest initiative in
Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! campaign to end
childhood obesity. Those ACF members will be
paired with schools in their communities, and
work with schools staffs and parents to help
educate students about food and nutrition.
With a pilot launch of the program over the
summer, and volunteers beginning to work
in schools in the fall, ACF members will be
among those helping to take the Chefs Move
to Schools initiative across the U.S.
During my acceptance speech as your new
national president last year, I promised to
resurrect the ACF National Championship
that was started in 1992 and continued until
1995. The guidelines set by past ACF national
president Keith Keogh, CEC, AAC, stated
that the national president would designate
a competition for members that would bring
recognition to an area of the culinary arts
that the president deemed worthy. In 1994,
in my first term as national president, I chose
a culinary competition that would put the
spotlight on chefs who had not previously
been active in competition. I paired ACF with
one of our sister organizations, the American
School Food Service Association, to place two
individuals in competition who were working to
promote healthy lunches in school foodservice.
This year, the ACF National Championship
will feature the Freedom Chef Challenge.
This was not my idea, but, in fact, was the
brainchild of David Prows, CEC, AAC, who
first brought the competition to the 2008
Western Regional Conference in Salt Lake
City to promote our military chefs. I’ve
always felt that military chefs deserve more
recognition in the culinary profession, and
this is why I decided, early in my campaign,
that, if elected, I would have the Freedom
Chef Challenge at our national convention.
I urge everyone who is attending to support
this competition with their presence. Some
of the men and women who place their lives
at risk for the safety of our country are also
fine chefs, and we should gather together
on Tuesday afternoon at the Anaheim
Convention Center to cheer them on. As I look
toward next year, I hope the ACF National
Championship will support another segment
of our industry that makes a difference.
Our final day of this year’s convention, Thursday,
is jampacked, and we need all of you there.
At 7 a.m., there is a sit-down breakfast. It
is imperative that we are seated promptly,
because this will also be the venue for our
General Session. Then, we gather for the Chef
Professionalism Lunch and meet the four
regional finalists for this prestigious award.
Finally, the pièce de résistance is the President’s
Grand Ball, where our competition winners will
be announced and receive their awards.
Chefs from ACF Syracuse New York
Chapter met with Michael Ty at a combined
chapter meeting hosted by ACF Professional
Chefs/Cooks Association of Rochester in
May. Left to right: John Melnyczuk, CCC,
and Brian Shore, CEC, board of directors;
Mary Ann Kiernan, CCC, vice president;
Ty; Christopher Cesta, CEC, treasurer; and
Gerald "Jerry" Bolton, president.
What to wear in Anaheim in August, where
it’s likely to be hot and humid? A chef jacket
and dark pants or business-casual attire is
requested for most events. For the evening
events, casual attire is recommended, except
for the AAC Dinner and President’s Grand Ball,
at which black tie is requested but business
attire is acceptable. Additionally, please respect
the hotel’s culinary staff when going to bars
and lounges by not wearing your chef jacket.
I look forward to seeing many of you in
Anaheim for the national convention.
And from your board of directors, please have a
safe and happy summer.