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Academy of Culinary Arts Awards Medals to 50 New Chefs

May 14, 2012

The Academy of Culinary Arts at Atlantic Cape Community College awarded culinary medals and certificates to more than 50 new chefs and baking and pastry professionals prepared with the latest culinary knowledge on Monday, May 14.

 Twenty-four graduates honed their skills in the Academy’s Culinary Arts program, and 17 completed the Baking and Pastry program. Nine short-term specialization certificates in Baking and Pastry and Hot Food were also awarded.

The awards ceremony, held in the college’s Walter Edge Theater, honored the graduates with gold, silver or bronze medals or certificates based on their grade point averages and criteria established by the American Culinary Federation. Specialization graduates received certificates of completion. A reception at Careme’s, the on-campus, student-run gourmet restaurant, followed the ceremony.

Amanda Palomino of Egg Harbor Township was named valedictorian and winner of the Nathan Schwartz Award, which is presented to the top student of each graduating class.

ACA alumnus Kevin Scull ’85, food and beverage director at the Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino was the guest speaker. Scull has served as an adjunct instructor and on the Academy’s Advisory Board since 1998. Scull owned and operated his own restaurant, Scully’s in Ocean City.

Honorees, their hometowns (by county) and their awards are:


Randall Adorno, Atlantic City—Bronze, Culinary Arts

Michael Butler, Egg Harbor Township—Bronze, Culinary Arts

Amanda Bova, Mays Landing—Certificate, Baking and Pastry

Belinda Chester, Egg Harbor City—Gold, Baking and Pastry

Julian Colon, Galloway—Bronze, Culinary Arts

Kathleen Cox, Mays Landing—Certificate, Baking and Pastry Specialization

Jose Cuadros, Atlantic City—Bronze, Culinary Arts

Alicia Grunewald, Hammonton—Silver, Baking and Pastry

Ken Martin, Mays Landing—Certificate, Hot Food Specialization

Daniel Messick, Hammonton—Certificate, Culinary Arts

Nicolas Miller, Pleasantville—Bronze, Culinary Arts

Denise Miranda, Egg Harbor City—Silver, Baking and Pastry

Colleen Murphy, Egg Harbor Township—Bronze, Baking and Pastry

Amanda Palomino, Egg Harbor Township—Gold, Baking and Pastry

Anthony Sacco, Hammonton—Bronze, Culinary Arts

Scott Stemple, Galloway—Certificate, Hot Food Specialization

Michael Townley, Mays Landing—Silver, Culinary Arts

Nichole Weller, Mays Landing—Bronze, Culinary Arts


Kristopher Frazier, Marlton—Silver, Culinary Arts


Erika Emmerling, Berlin—Silver, Baking and Pastry

Danielle Fratanduono, Sicklerville—Silver, Baking and Pastry

LeeAnn McGovern, Berlin—Gold, Culinary Arts

Andrew Montchyk, Bellmawr—Certificate, Culinary Arts

Michelle Waters, Berlin—Certificate, Culinary Arts


Emily Frankel, Ocean City—Silver, Baking and Pastry

Thomas Gain, North Wildwood—Bronze, Culinary Arts

Zuleika Gutierrez, Wildwood—Silver, Baking and Pastry

Veronica Harwood, Villas—Silver, Baking and Pastry

Jason King, Somers Point—Silver, Culinary Arts

Domenique Marazzi, Cape May Court House—Bronze, Culinary Arts

Neal Smead, Ocean View—Certificate, Culinary Arts

Amanda Springer, Villas—Bronze, Baking and Pastry

Karen Trasatti, Cape May—Certificate, Baking and Pastry Specialization


Gary Auxer, Turnersville—Certificate, Baking and Pastry Specialization

Adam Bowers, Williamstown—Bronze, Culinary Arts

Carole Conner, Sewell—Certificate, Baking and Pastry Specialization

Brett Dickey, Sewell—Bronze, Culinary Arts

Catherine Lord, Sewell—Certificate, Hot Food Specialization

Jaclyn McGuire, Sewell—Silver, Culinary Arts

Louis Solometo, Sewell—Certificate, Hot Food Specialization


Karla Auermuller, Forked River—Gold, Baking and Pastry

Michael Brandsema, Little Egg Harbor—Silver, Culinary Arts

Kristiane Cestaro, Barnegat—Bronze, Baking and Pastry

Kerry Coyle, Cedar Run—Certificate, Baking and Pastry Specialization

Marissa DeGregorio, Little Egg Harbor—Silver, Baking and Pastry

Malorie Gibson, Jackson—Certificate, Culinary Arts, Baking and Pastry

Angelina Vaughan, Manahawkin—Silver, Culinary Arts, Baking and Pastry


Jacquise Pickett, Rahway—Silver, Culinary Arts

The ACA opened in 1981 on Atlantic Cape’s Mays Landing Campus to meet the growing needs of the hospitality industry. The Academy celebrated 30 years of culinary achievement during the 2011-2012 academic year. Full-time classes meet five hours a day, Monday through Friday, in morning, afternoon or evening sessions from January through May and August through December. Part-time and evening classes are also available.

Academy graduates can be found in kitchens around the world in major hotel and restaurant chains, while others have gone on to open their own restaurants and catering businesses. For more information on the Academy of Culinary Arts, call 1-800-645‑CHEF, e-mail, or visit the ACA online at