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Xavier Smith, the executive chef at the NEW Center, holds a tray of foods.

NEOMED Chef Certified by American Culinary Foundation

Xavier Smith, the executive chef at the NEW Center, has attained Certified Executive Chef (CEC) status through the American Culinary Federation – a certifying body for chefs and cooks for more than 45 years.

Smith came to the NEOMED Education and Wellness (NEW) Center in 2014, following training at Le Cordon Bleu Institute of Culinary Arts in Pittsburgh. His cooking background includes working as a chef at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida as well as at Russo’s, a Northeast Ohio restaurant.

As the executive chef, Smith leads the culinary staff at the conference and event center on NEOMED’s campus as well as creating menus for the campus restaurant The Bistro, which is open to the public as well as students, faculty and staff.

The Bistro puts Smith’s creations front and center every day on the NEOMED campus. New menu items by Smith have been added as of Jan. 18.

A certified expert

When asked about the process of attaining Certified Executive Chef status, Smith said, “The process for becoming certified is not an easy one. I had to design and execute a three-course meal for four judges who are also CEC chefs. Everything has to be done on site and you have a three-hour window to finish.”

Throughout this certification, Smith had to demonstrate his extensive knowledge of food, management, food cost, ordering, menu planning, customer service and nutrition.

“I have learned a great deal from cooking,” Smith said. “Without the knowledge that I have obtained over the years, I would not have been able to achieve this Certified Executive Chef accomplishment.”


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