Culinary students will meet with award-winning chef and author Rick Bayless on Aug. 31 before he speaks at a dinner to benefit scholarships for the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education.
Bayless has written nine best-selling cookbooks, including Mexico — One Plate at a Time, which was named James Beard Best International Cookbook of the Year in 2001. Most of his award-winning restaurants – including Toplobampo, the 2017 Beard Foundation Outstanding Restaurant – are in Chicago.
In 2003, he and his staff established the Frontera Farmer Foundation, which has awarded almost 200 grants totaling nearly $2 million in support of small Midwestern farms. In 2007, he and his team started the Frontera Scholarship, which supports a Mexican-American from the Chicago school district who plans to study culinary arts. Bayless has won many awards for his humanitarian efforts, including the Mexican Order of the Aztec Eagle, the highest decoration bestowed on foreigners whose work has benefitted Mexico and its people.
The GRCC Foundation and retirement community Beacon Hill at Eastgate are co-hosting a dinner that will feature remarks by Bayless and a panel discussion with chefs Tim England, Adam Watts Jay Sharkey, Austin Gresham, Andrew Eggert, Keith Bryant and Doug Orr, and winemaker Nancie Oxley. Proceeds will fund culinary scholarships.