Welcome to Culinary Arts
My name is John G Bell CEC CE, A certified Executive Chef through the American Culinary Federation. My love of cooking started over 40 years ago in a big Italian family. During School I was introduced to Home Economics and never looked back.
During High School a teacher named Pam Snyder saw a talent in me and believed a troubled kid could over come obsticles. I went to Baltimores International School of Culinary Arts. After finishing Culinary school, I apprenticed under Master Chef Joeseph Remkies for 5 years. I earned my first Chefs Certification as Certified Working Chef in 1987. After spending years in Aspen Colorado and running A 4 Star Restaurant I returned to Florida to work as a Corporate Chef and Trainer with several companies. Later to open a French Fine Dining restaurant in Ocala, Florida being rated a one of best restaurants in the state, earning a 4 Star rating. In 2001 Ms. Pam Snyder past away so I closed my restaurant to take over the Culinary Program at Lake Weir High in Ocala, to give back as was given to me.
Presently I serve as President of Gulf to Lakes Chefs and Cooks Assosiation along with being a Certified Culinary Evaluator for the American Culinary Federation. This past year I earned Lead Evaluator Certification and train others to evaluate Chefs testing for certification. I am constantly involved with current industry traveling and consulting for resorts and schools world wide. This gives my students great connections to this industry along with sharing 40 years of experience including owning three restaurants.
Students enrolled in culinary learn valuable skills that will help them in any career. These skills to often lost in classroom setting affords students oppertunities to problem solve, learn people skills, interviewing, leadership and professionalism. They run a catering buisness and restaurant that is open to the public given valuble work experience in a real world environment. They are forced to learn time management, work ethic and responsibility for choices.
The Jacket Cafe is open most Thursdays and Fridays from 11am till 12:40 pm. Parents and guests are welcome to enjoy great food in a unique learning environment.
I look forward to teaching your students and sharing their accomplishments with you.
Welcome to a new year 2016-2017
I am excited to see what our advanced students will do with thier oppertunity running a real restaurant. Each year is a wonderfull experience for both myself and students as we embark on a new adventure. Students both new and old shall be challanged more this year then ever before.
The Culinary Academy has 6 major events including working with a TV Celebrity Chef John Aston. This both exciting and truly a blessing for our students, never before has any high school culinary program been involved with such a special event.
Over the summer I attended a PRO START training at Johnson and Whales University in Miami, it was a incredible experience working with chefs and instructors from all over Florida. It reminds me how much we can continue to learn if we only desire continued growth. With my great new techniques and experiences, I am excited to challange students to PRO START certification.
Leesburg Culinary Team will also be challanged with three new culinary contest. Our SKILLS USA chapter plans on combining all CTE programs and growing, along with students learning more leadership skills.
Again I am excited to start a new year and put Leesburg Culinary Academy on a national stage.
Chef John G Bell CEC CE