Columbus Diners Cook-off
Columbus Diners Cook-off
Five popular local restaurants will face-off in a live cooking competition. Which eatery will win and get to meet Guy? Join us and taste featured dishes from:
The Columbus Diners Cook-off winner will be selected by three guest chefs from the Columbus State Community College culinary program:
James Taylor, MBA, CEC, AAC
Jim currently holds the position of Executive Director of Hospitality Programs at Columbus State Community College and has served for the college for 28 years, receiving the CSCC “Distinguished Full Professor Award” in 2012. Jim also serves as the elected Treasurer of the American Culinary Federation Columbus Chapter, with a membership of over 450 strong. Through the years at Columbus State, Jim served as coordinator of the Culinary Apprenticeship Program from 1996 through 2012 and the Restaurant Management Program from 2012 through 2016, programs recognized as the 2014 “Top 20 Culinary Programs in America” by FSR Magazine
and the “2017 Top 10 Culinary Programs in Ohio” by Best Choice Schools, an online resource for students that ranks accredited schools and programs.
Chef Jim Taylor is a certified executive chef and spent 23 years in the hospitality industry working at legendary and iconic restaurants, such as The Jai-Lai, Mario’s International, Christopher Inn, and Darby House. He also owned and operated his own catering company “Tasteful Solutions”. He has chaired many community and scholarship fundraisers for Children’s Hunger Alliance, the Columbus Chamber of Commerce, AIDS Service Connection, and The Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Ohio.
Jim has won the honor of the national American Culinary Federation Chef of the Year Awards both in 1991 and 2002. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Chefs (AAC), which is the Honor Society of the American Culinary Federation. He previously served as Northeast Regional Vice President of the ACF from 2001 through 2005 and National Treasurer from 2009 through 2013; then elected to the position of National Secretary 2013 through 2015, and additionally served as business manager for Culinary Team USA 2013 – 2015.
Jim has been honored with the awarding of three national presidential medallions for service and dedication by national presidents of the ACF, during his tenure with the American Culinary Federation. In 2004, Jim was the recipient of the General John D. McLaughlin Award for Professionalism by the AAC. In 2006, he was named Educator of the Year for the northeast region of the ACF; and, in 2016, he was presented the national, prestigious, Herman G. Rusch Lifetime Achievement award from American Culinary Federation, clearly marking his lifetime of conscientious stewardship and guided spirit of community relations.
Chef Diane Souza
Diane Souza has worked in the Hospitality Industry for over thirty years at various private golf clubs, restaurants and hotels. Her specialty is baking and pastries and Diane is a Certified Executive Pastry Chef. She is an Instructor Program Advisor of the Restaurant Foodservice Management Program at Columbus State Community College. In her free time, she enjoys her one-year-old grandson, James.
Adam Hagar, MBA, CSC, CPC, CDM
Chef Adam Hagar currently holds the position of Teaching Assistant & Adjunct Faculty in the Hospitality Department at Columbus State Community College. Adam is a graduate of the Culinary Apprenticeship, Baking & Pastry Arts and Dietary Management Programs from Columbus State. He has won medals in State, and Regional Competitions from the American Culinary Federation (ACF). Adam holds certifications from the American Culinary Federation as a Certified Chef de Cuisine (CCC) and a Certified Pastry Cook (CPC), through the ACF and is a Certified Dietary Manager (CDM) from the Association of Nutrition & Foodservice Professionals (ANFP). Prior to teaching Adam worked for 9 years in the Hospitality industry.