TEAM MANAGER: Paul Hoag, CCC, CEC, CHT –
Chef Hoag is a certified chef cuisine (CCC) and has worked in the hospitality industry for over 30 years. His competition experience spans from 1991- to the present, competing as well as judging.
He had the honour of cooking at the Nobel Peace Prize in Stockholm, Sweden (the only Canadian to do so).
Chef Hoag is the Executive Chef of McMaster University, where he and his brigade produce tens of thousands of meals a day.
LEAD COACH: Judson (Jud) Simpson – Chef Judson (Jud) Simpson is a certified master chef (CMC) and a recipient of an honorary bachelor’s degree from Humber College. His competition experience spans thirty years and includes individual and team competition, mentoring, coaching and judging. Jud is the Executive Chef at the House of Commons in Canadas’ capital.
With a verifiable mastery of current management skills, he has been able to build and maintain control of a highly effective and efficient brigade.
COMMUNICATION LIAISON: Tony Fernandes – Chef Tony Fernandes has been in the hotel industry for over 40 years and is one of the founders of the United Emirates Chef Federation. Chef Fernandes is a world-class A level judge across the world, as well as a World Association of Chefs Master Chef. Tony is the Executive Chef of the Crowne Plaza airport as well as the Food and Beverage Director.
Tony has competed all over the world for decades and brings a wealth of knowledge that will bring Culinary Team Canada to the world podium.
PASTRY COACH: Russ Thayer – As the lead Chef for the Chocolate Academy™ Online, Chef Russ Thayer curates the curriculum and leads the chefs who contribute to its content. Chef Russ specializes in modern confections based on traditional techniques; while also having a robust knowledge of pastry as a whole. Chef Russ joined the Chicago Chocolate Academy™ team in 2014 to further his dedication to research and innovation. In 2018, Chef Russ relocated to Montreal, Canada, to become the lead Chef for the Chocolate Academy™ Online. His strong desire to work with the best pastry chefs in the industry continues to push him forward.
COLD KITCHEN: Peter Dewer – Chef Peter Dewar grew up in Riverview, New Brunswick. His culinary career started at the Culinary Institute of Canada, and he did his apprenticeship in Bern, Switzerland. Currently, he teaches Culinary Management at Nova Scotia Community College Kingstec campus. In addition to his primary role at the college, Peter also does product development for food companies such as Graves and Pure Infused Maple.
Driven by a love of culinary competitions, he has been a member and coach for the Canadian National Culinary Team.
Carmelo Vadacchino – with more than 25 years of experience, Carmelo has worked at all levels of the culinary world. Chef Vadacchino holds the title of Corporate Chef/Brand Ambassador for F. Dick Knives Canada, AMT World Best Pans, and Europaues Merchandising and Food Supplies, which develops new food ingredients for national retail chains.
Adelina Sisti-DeBlasis has been in the Culinary Industry for 20 plus years and is the owner-executive Chef of Adelina’s Cuisine and Fornoteca Oven Distributor.
Certified teacher at the Secondary School Culinary/Hospitality with the Greater Essex County District School Board as well as the CF Windsor Local Chapter President and is on the Culinary Olympic Team Management/Support Team 2024. Chef Adelina has served on various committees, Windsor Board of Director member, Ontario Restaurant Hotel & Motel Association, World Chefs Association Canada’s Representative ICD Member 2017-2020. Chef Adelina is a talented Chef always enhancing her own skills, educating our new young Chefs and elevating the profession. Her food and her strong work ethic demonstrate how she truly believes in the importance of finding something you are passionate about and staying tremendously interested in it.
Chef Eli Cami – Chef Cami is a Culinary Management graduate from Centennial College. She currently works at Centennial College as a Program Operations Assistant and a Culinary Professor.
Born and raised in Albania, she found her love for cooking while living in Greece. She decided to pursue her cooking career in Toronto and has ever since been very involved in the culinary community. She is a member of the Canadian Culinary Federation and Slow Food Toronto and is an active volunteer.
Her purpose as a Chef and Professor is to extend the same opportunities to her students and the community presented to her while developing herself personally and professionally.
As a new member of Culinary Team Canada, Eli is excited to extend her knowledge and honoured to learn from the other members of the Team.
Chef Rodney Bowers – Chef Bowers hails from Central Newfoundland with a non-status indigenous background. He has cooked all over Europe, mostly in Belgium, Germany, New York and Toronto, and has owned several restaurants and bars from upscale dining to fast-casual.
He is currently finishing his first cookbook while a resident professor and Ambassador for Centennial Collages School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts.
Cameron Callum – A Very proud Canadian and supporter of Team Canada in any endeavour.
It is such a great opportunity and an honour to support our national culinary team. I see this as an opportunity to increase awareness with Canadians of a team that competes on an international stage and represents our Canadian culinary traditions as well as the diversity that makes Canada such a great place to live.
I think the Canadian Foodie needs a team to root for just as much as any sports fan.
Chef David Franklin – Certified Canadian Chef de Cuisine, Culinary Federation National Treasurer and President of the London Chapter, accomplished Toastmaster, Scouts Canada International Service Team, and amateur sommelier – David Franklin is currently a Business Development Manager with Sysco in Southwestern Ontario.
After receiving his Certificate of Qualification and Red Seal in 1996 following his training at Sir Sandford Fleming College in Peterborough, Chef Franklin built a successful career in the food service industry while developing his professional culinary skills. His love of wine culminated in the spring of 2001 with a new wine cellar project at Elmhirst’s Resort in Keene, Ontario and in March 2003 won a special award at Cuvee for Continued Commitment to Ontario Wines. In 2009 David challenged the three-day exam the Canadian Culinary Institute to become a Certified Chef de Cuisine.
Currently Head Technical Skills Judge for the Ontario Skills competition held each May. Over the last two years he has been a regional tasting judge for the Young Chef Olympiad and is currently working on his judge’s certification with World Chefs. David keeps active in his community by participating in various local fund-raising events for charity.
Rahil Rathod – “Repetition is the mother of perfection. If there is true perfection, it’s about doing something over and over again. I truly think that if somebody does a recipe they’ve never done before and gets it right, they’re probably luckier than they are talented.”
Jonathan Thauberger – “I am proud to continue to be part of this diverse and talented team of chefs who will showcase the finest of Canadian cuisine on the world stage.”
Changlong Yue – “I constantly strive for Success, if I can achieve the best, I don’t want a ‘better’ for an answer. For life is too short to not perform our best! Choosing the right profession keeps me going for years, joining Team Canada makes my life worth it, representing Canada to stand on the world stage makes me proud of who I am as a Chef.”
Chris Corkum – “The opportunity to join this group of talented chefs and represent our country on the global stage is an amazing honor. I’m looking forward to helping push the limits of what is possible. “
Rebecca Van Bommel – “I am incredibly honoured and proud to be representing Canada on the global culinary stage, and to show the world how strong and determined we are to bring home the gold in 2024! I strive to make all of our supporters proud and happy to be a key part of our journey to success.”
Sydney Hamelin – “As part of Culinary Team Canada, I’m excited to learn new techniques, as well as networking with other chefs.”
Vaishnav (Vish) Mayekar – “Representing Canada on the world stage gives me a great sense of pride and honour. I am inspired by the strength and unity this team radiates as we embark on the journey of receiving one of the biggest accolades in this industry together.”
Calvin Wat – “Feeling a great sense of honour and responsibility to be representing Canada on the world stage. I am excited about the learning opportunities afforded to me, particularly from my fellow teammates. It’ll be a great opportunity to push the boundaries of what I can do, and do my part for the pastry scene for our country”.
Zagros Leung – “I’m honoured to be representing Canada as part of the Culinary Team Canada. It is a privilege to be able to do what I love and compete on a world stage with a group of talented chefs”.
Thushara Fernando – “It is certainly a great honor to be a part of the talented culinary team of Canada. Working with a dedicated team and embarking on this exciting culinary journey with them is something I am looking forward to. Being able to pursue my passion and work with other accomplished chefs on a global platform is truly a pleasure”.