Celebrating our Chefs | Chef Appreciation Week 2021

One of our favorite weeks of the year, Chef Appreciation Week, is observed in over 30 countries worldwide and gives us the opportunity to publicly thank our chefs, sous, cooks, bakers, catering chefs, and others who inspire us each day through food. This past year and a half, they went above and beyond to unite us through food with new and exciting experiences for our students and communities – whether at home or virtually. They stayed ahead of trends to make us smile, even if it did involve making pizza in waffle irons (which is now one of our favorite food trends.) Big and small, everything they do is so appreciated, and we couldn’t do any of it without them.

Screaming a big, huge, loud Happy Chef Appreciation Week to our amazing teams! 👏👩‍🍳🎉

This year we are also overjoyed to feature the stories of a few of our amazing campus chefs across the country.

Blas Baldepina | Nova Southeastern Campus Executive Chef

Campus Executive Chef for Nova Southeastern University, Chef Blas Baldepina‘s passion for food started as a child in the Dominican Republic on his family’s farm. He is inspired by how food can create memories for those he prepares it for and his favorite part of being a chef with Chartwells Higher Ed is the ability to gather with his diverse group of culinarians to create innovative recipes for students each and every day. We are so grateful for everything you do, Blas! Happy Chef Appreciation Week!


Jon Jackson | LSU Campus Executive Chef

Chef Jon Jackson at LSU knew from childhood that he wanted to be a chef. He grew up on a farm, learning to cook from his mother. He has been a part of Chartwells Higher Ed since the very beginning in 1997, and says that he is proud to be a part of such a progressive company. Chef Jon specializes in Cajun and Creole cuisine and is the recipient of the President’s Circle Award. Thank you for everything you do, Chef Jon! Happy Chef Appreciation Week!


Tatiana Ortiz | NYU Catering Executive Chef

Chef Tatiana Ortiz at NYU began cooking when she moved to New York from Colombia. In her free time, she started working in kitchens, learning something new every day. Her favorite part of her job is to be impactful and creative in her field as the Catering Executive Chef at NYU Eats. Thank you for everything you do, Chef Tati and happy Chef Appreciation Week!


Kevin Peasgood | Executive Chef at Oakland University

Chef Kevin Peasgood knew he wanted to be a chef from 13 years old when he began cooking with his family. He got his start at a country club and spend years living and working in Europe learning new cooking techniques. Kevin is now the Executive Chef at Oakland University. His favorite part is interacting with the students and student groups including Teaching Kitchens. Happy Chef Appreciation Week, Kevin!