The Story Behind the Chef
A Culinary Executive Chef, Entrepreneur, and Nutritionist with over 10 + years of experience in the Hospitality Restaurant Management industry. My experience includes professional cooking and kitchen management, culinary and nutrition education, teaching, developing curriculum, and entrepreneurial administration.
- Knowledgeable in menu planning
- Strong culinary skills in different types of service (buffet, sit-down, family style, and Garde Manger)
- Proficient in written and verbal communication
- Excellent knowledge of Microsoft Office Professional Suite and Microsoft Works
A motivated self-starter with the ability to work individually or in a team environment
- Creative ideas and support in various projects
- The ability to learn new concepts quickly
- A fearless attitude towards challenging situations
A Unique Taste Inc., Fort Lauderdale, FL – Executive Chef
2006 – PRESENT
an entrepreneurial venture focused on small, intimate, high-end dinner parties, cooking classes, and in-home culinary services
Unique Hospitality Group LLC (DBA) Gumbo Twist LLC, Fort Lauderdale, FL – Executive Chef
2006 – PRESENT
Pro Kitchen Hub, Sunrise, FL – Owner, Community Relations Director
2015 – PRESENT
Unique Culinary Group, Sunrise, FL – Chef Consultant and Nutritionist
2019 – PRESENT
Florida International University, Miami, FL – Adjunct Professor
Broward College, Fort Lauderdale, FL – Adjunct Instructor for Continuing Education Program
2022, 2021, 2007, 2006
Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies of Broward County Coalition: Contractual Accounts: Nutriactive Concepts, Fort Lauderdale, FL
White Lodging Renaissance Plantation Hotel, Plantation, FL – Assistant to Director of Sales, Director of Catering and Senior Sales Managers
2006 – 2007
Tropibleu Restaurants: Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts Internship, Miami, FL – Intern
Fairmont Turn Berry Isle Resort, Aventura, FL – Garde Manger Prep Cook
Starwood Hotels and Resorts, Westin, FL – Food and Beverage Intern
2004 – 2005
Unick Kreations Inc., Fort Lauderdale, FL – Event Planner and Administrative Manager
2001 – 2005
James Beard Women Entrepreneurial Leadership Program
2019 Fellowship Recipient
- Recipients complete a five-day entrepreneurship and leadership training program developed with Babson College.
- It targets women chefs/owners of a single restaurant or food business looking to expand and grow their entrepreneurial skills.
- The curriculum addresses advanced business and finance concerns related to entrepreneurship and expansion with training and leadership development. The leadership program emphasizes work/life balance and other cultural issues.
Florida International University, School of Dietetics and Nutrition, Robert Stempel College of Public Health and Social Work, Miami, FL
Master of Science
Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts, Miami, FL
Associate of Science
Florida International University, School of Hospitality and Tourism, Track of Restaurant Management, North Miami, FL
Bachelor of Science in Hospitality Management
Miami Dade College, Miami, FL
Associate in Arts, Hospitality Administration
- Caribbean Chef of the Year 2012 Silver Medalist
- Team Award for “Best Taste of the Islands” street food competition 2012
- Silver Medal for “Caribbean National Team” of 2012
- Food Network South Beach Wine and Food Festival Moet and Chandon Bubble-Q
- Assisted Executive Chef Kent Rathbun and Top Chef Miami Season 3 Chef Trey Wilcox from Abacus Restaurant
- Food Network South Beach Wine and Food Festival Amstel Light Burger Bash
- Assisted Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto and his Executive Chef (Nai Kang Kuan from Morimoto Napa) Team
The Chef Vicky YouTube Channel
Published Research in the International Journal of Child Nutrition
Caribbean and tourism Association at the taste of the Caribbean Olympic
Recipe: Caribe Style Week- Epicurean by Design
Toques in Black: A Celebration of Black Chefs
Recipe: Essence magazine Online: Soup Joumou recipe and interview.
James Beard Foundation Women Entrepreneurial Leadership Program (WEL) Fellowship
Chef Vicky on “Good Morning Miramar”
Authority Magazine- Medium.com
In addition to the work she and her family do for their native country, Haiti, Chef Vicky is dedicated to giving back to the community that she loves so dearly.
She provides nutrition education and cooking demonstrations to many nonprofit and for-profit community partners such as Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies, Memorial Healthcare System, Holy Cross Hospital, Urban League in Broward, Broward Housing Authorities, and many others. Her services are designed and governed by the Florida Health Department, Aetna, and the Community Foundation of Broward.
In addition, Chef Vicky and her family are dedicated to their parish, St. Mark Catholic Church and School, donating their time, treasure, and talent to events such as the school gala and the church carnival.
In addition, Chef Vicky supports the following organizations:
- Jeremie Charitable Foundation
- Culinary Wonders USA: Chefs Helping Chefs
- Minority Chefs Group
- Special Olympics
- American Cancer Association
- American Heart Association
Inspiration and Values
The granddaughter of self-taught entrepreneurs and rum distillers, Chef Vicky grew up on a family compound in Haiti that shared the same land as the family rum distillery. Sunday dinners were grand feasts at home. The meals were prepared from her family’s organic garden, and meats farmed nearby. This shaped who she is today.
Chef Vicky faces each challenge and finds inspiration from the moment she wakes up. In her own words,
“I get up in the morning and:
- I think about how I can make an impact through my God-given talent,
- I seek to share knowledge and resources that will make a difference in people’s lives through that God-given talent,
- I ensure that everything I associate myself with falls in line with my purpose, and
- I strive to put a smile on people’s faces and bring people together through my food.”
Culinary Education and Experience
Work Experience: Along the way, she has worked in many fine establishments such as the Westin Fort Lauderdale, the Tropi-Bleu Restaurant, the Renaissance Plantation, the Turn Berry Isle Resorts and Spa, and countless others. She has also worked with many celebrity chefs at the SOBEFEST wine and food festival as a volunteer including Chef Ken Rathbum, Tre Wilcox, Iron Chef Morimoto Executive team, and Chef Morimoto.
Mentorships: Chef Vicky has also been mentored by the acclaimed Indian-American Chef Asif R. Syed from Naples, Florida. Chef Syed, who has received multiple awards for his extraordinary culinary talent, has also appeared and excelled on several nationally televised shows. This includes shows such as the fifth season of “Guy’s Grocery Games,” “Cutthroat Kitchen” with Alton Brown in 2016, “Beat Bobby Flay” in Season 17 – Episode 12, and “Chop of the Mornin’ to Ya” in 2018.
Education: Chef Vicky attended Culinary School at Le Cordon Bleu Miami and holds a Bachelor in Hospitality Restaurant Management as well as a Masters in Dietetics and Nutrition. Both degrees were obtained from Florida International University (FIU). In 2019, she was one of the recipients selected for the James Beard Women Entrepreneur Leadership Fellowship, powered by Babson College and sponsored and presented by Audi. This prestigious award is given to 20 of the most talented culinary women entrepreneurs around the country.
Her ability to believe in doing great things enabled her to follow her vision during her Master’s research, and a simple idea became a reality. One of Chef Vicky’s greatest challenges was to undertake the research necessary to complete her project. Her research on the Impact of Vegetable Preparation Method and Taste-Test on Vegetable Preference for First Grade Children in the United States was recently published in the International Journal of Child Nutrition.
Awards and Accolades
Awarded Bank of America and Start-Up FIU Best Business Pitch
James Beard Award Fellow
Nominated in the “40 under 40” class of Legacy magazine as one of South Florida’s “Black Leaders of Today and Tomorrow
Recipes and interviews featured on Essence Magazine online and Island Origin
Featured in Toques in Black: A cookbook Celebration of 101 Black Chefs in America
Her study from her Master’s research was published in the International Journal of Child Nutrition
Awarded a silver medal for Caribbean Chef of The Year from the Caribbean and Tourism Association on their Annual Olympic stage
Team Haiti was also awarded a silver medal for Caribbean Team of the Year and received an Award for “Best Team for Taste of the Islands”
Chef Vicky has been featured on local news stations such as WSVN CH 7, Deco Drive, WPLG Local 10 News, 6 on the Mix CH 6, and Good Morning Miramar