Friday, November 2, 2012

CIC chefs worked toward advanced certifications through American Culinary Federation

L - R: Chefs Miles Huff, Richard Nickless, Bruce Ozga (ACF Trainer), Kevin Mitchell, M. Kelly Wilson,
Ward Morgan, Greg Mueller, and Robert Murray.

On a dark, cloudy day, with Hurricane Sandy churning 350 miles off the coast of Charleston, the American Culinary Federation (ACF) Greater Charleston Chapter hosted the first of two annual practical examinations, where hopeful chef candidates from as far as Bluffton, South Carolina, braved the weather for an opportunity to earn advanced culinary certifications.
ACF is the leading accredited organization in the United States operating the most comprehensive certification program for current and future chefs and pastry chefs. Depending on the certification level, chefs are required to demonstrate expert knowledge in food safety and sanitation, menu development, cooking technique, taste and plating skills. In addition to the cooking practical portion of the exam, candidates must also pass a separate 100-question written exam.
The examination was proctored by ACF chef evaluators Michael Carmel, CEC, CCA, M Edu. (lead); Kimberly Brock Brown, CEPC, CCA, AAC; Elena Clement, CEPC; and Ron Andrews, CEC. The Greater Charleston Chapter celebrated the following passing members: Chefs Charles Arena, Tim McAuliffe, Chad Billings, and Scott Stefanelli, Certified Executive Chef® practical exam; Chef Joe Branton, Certified Sous Chef® practical exam; and Evelyn-Zale-Brown, Certified Chef de Cuisine® practical exam. All six candidates must now pass the written exam in order to obtain their respective certification levels. Congratulations to all!
On the day before the practical exam, a group of ACF chefs came together for Approved Certification Evaluator (ACE) training.  Lead by Bruce Ozga, CEC, AAC, ACE, from Johnson & Wales University, Robert “Mile” Huff, CCE; Ward Morgan, CEC, CCE; Richard “Nick” Nickless, CEC, CCA, AAC, CDM, CFPP; Kevin Mitchell CEC; and Greg Mueller CEC, CCA, CDM, CFPP participated in and passed an intensive eight-hour instruction and mentoring session and next-day exam observation. The group will separately observe three additional ACF practical exams throughout the year before obtaining their ACE status, providing the Greater Charleston Chapter with five additional ACE chefs.
For more information about ACF certifications or ACE training, visit For information regarding the ACF Greater Charleston Chapter, membership and meeting dates, visit

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