With summer winding down and the back-to-school mania at its peak, parents are understandably concerned about their children's lack of enthusiasm to return to the daily school routine. But have no fear, 'rents, because Chef Toni - The Tesla Group's newest client - is here to save the day...and maybe even the world: one palate at a time.
Every once in a while, I come across stories of incredible women who inspire me to do more - and to do it better than everyone else. Chef Toni Willard-Young is one of those women.
A mother of four who has catered for NY/NJ politicians, the South African Embassy, private dinners for Columbia University's alumni, women's civic organizations - such as The Links - and international style doyenne, Audrey Smaltz, her resume is beyond impressive.
Chef Toni has also dedicated her time to teaching cooking classes at the YMCA and PS 166, located in the Upper West Side of Manhattan.
If that's not astounding enough, Chef Toni's latest project, Chef Toni's Cooking Academy, turns kids into top "junior chefs," focusing on "farm-to-table" cooking through fun culinary adventures!
Sound a little too good to be true? It's not.
Students at the academy dress us in their very own chef hats and aprons, visit local farmers, butchers, bakers, grocers who teach students about fresh produce, and other food professionals - all in service of developing their palates with an understanding of food origins, preparation and dining.
With the back-to-school season upon us, Chef Toni understands the importance of nourishing food, because not only does it make a child healthier, but also improves their school performance and is a critical component in growth and development.
And the best part of the program? The kids receive Culinary Graduation Certificates at the end of the class semester!
Chef Toni's many accomplishments are a true testament to her skill and passion. She was just recently featured in Examiner and will be in TimeOut NY Kids in October, and she has been catering for high profile politicians and clients like Jonathan Waxman for years.
For more information on Chef Toni or her Cooking Academy, please visit http://cheftoniscookingadventures.blogspot.com/.