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ACA Awards Medals to New Chefs; Former White House Executive Pastry Chef is Guest Speaker

December 18, 2009

The Academy of Culinary Arts at Atlantic Cape Community College awarded culinary medals and certificates to nearly 60  new chefs and baking and pastry professionals prepared with the latest culinary knowledge on Friday, Dec. 18.

 Twenty-eight graduates honed their skills in the Academy's Culinary Arts program, and twenty-one completed the Baking and Pastry program. Six short-term specialization certificates in Baking and Pastry and Hot Food were awarded.

The awards ceremony was held in the college's Walter Edge Theater on the Mays Landing campus, and 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.

Chef Thaddeus DuBois, who has worked as the executive pastry chef for the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City, and the White House, was the guest speaker. A world-renown chocolatier, DuBois worked closely with former First Lady Laura Bush to prepare all confectionary creations for State dinners, Presidential lunches, Congressional functions and other White House special events. Before serving the First Family and overseeing the production of pastries for 12 restaurants in the Borgata, DuBois received his culinary training at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y., and at the International School of Confectionary Arts at Gaithersburg, Md. DuBois also received his bachelor's degree from the University of Montana. 

William McDevitt of Clermont was named valedictorian and winner of the Nathan Schwartz Award, which is presented to the top student of each graduating class.


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


Gilbert Allen III, Atlantic City-Certificate, Culinary Arts

Betsy J. Baker, Estell Manor-Silver, Baking and Pastry

Derrick Connor, Margate-Gold, Culinary Arts

Anna D'Agostino, Linwood-Bronze, Baking and Pastry

Cynthia DiGiovanni Devlin, Egg Harbor Township-Baking and Pastry Specialization

Daniel Gong-Certificate, Culinary Arts

Caitlin Hickey, Egg Harbor Township-Bronze, Baking and Pastry

Nihal Hosseini, Hammonton-Bronze, Baking and Pastry

Molley Malvey, Somers Point-Bronze, Baking and Pastry

Dana Palermo, Mays Landing-Silver, Culinary Arts

Jeremy Petro, Egg Harbor City-Bronze, Culinary Arts

Matthew A. Rodin, Buena-Silver, Baking and Pastry

Sherry Shaw, Buena-Gold, Culinary Arts

Fred Stigale, Mays Landing-Bronze, Culinary Arts

Alberto Taboada, Galloway-Certificate, Culinary Arts



Gregory Bacher, Medford-Silver, Culinary Arts

Stephen Daly, Medford-Certificate, Culinary Arts

Danielle McIntyre, Willingboro-Silver, Baking and Pastry

Chelsea Parry, Marlton-Bronze, Baking and Pastry

John Rietzen III, Delran-Silver, Culinary Arts

Catherine Schwartz, Mt. Laurel-Silver, Baking and Pastry

Barrie Woodington, Cinnaminson-Gold, Culinary Arts

Shawn Zenszer, Mt. Laurel-Silver, Culinary Arts




Hildegarde Cadet, Atco-Baking & Pastry Specialization

Barry Mostyn, Cherry Hill-Gold, Culinary Arts

Jason Nieves, Sicklerville-Silver, Baking and Pastry

Victoria Russo, Sicklerville-Silver, Baking & Pastry


Kevin Murray, Blackwood-Bronze, Culinary Arts

Kevin O'Neill, Collingswood-Bronze, Culinary Arts

Marianne Sutocky, Pine Hill-Bronze, Baking and Pastry



Cindy Cassidy, Ocean View-Silver, Culinary Arts

William McDevitt, Clermont-Gold, Culinary Arts

Jasmine Melo, Cape May-Silver, Baking and Pastry

Cody Menz, Cape May-Silver, Culinary Arts

Matthew Miller, Ocean City-Bronze, Culinary Arts



Samantha Andreoli, Vineland-Gold, Baking and Pastry

Lora Carletto, Vineland-Bronze, Culinary Arts

Allyson Groff, Vineland-Bronze, Culinary Arts and Hot Food Specialization



Alfio Casella, Mickelton-Certificate, Culinary Arts

Lindsay DiGiuseppe, Sewell-Silver, Baking and Pastry

Lindsey Guzejko, Clayton-Silver, Baking and Pastry

Thomas Hahn, Sewell-Bronze, Culinary Arts

Kathryn Ingenito, Newfield-Silver, Culinary Arts

Kathryn Sullivan, Deptford-Gold, Baking and Pastry



Carey Brandsdorfer, Brick-Gold, Culinary Arts and Hot Food Specialization

Mary Chesky, Little Egg Harbor-Silver, Baking and Pastry

Rita Janssen, Toms River-Baking and Pastry and Hot Food specializations

David Melusky, Manahawkin-Bronze, Culinary Arts

Toni Muccia, Toms River-Bronze, Culinary Arts

Constance O'Connell, Manahawkin-Gold, Baking and Pastry

Nina Rogers, Brick-Silver, Baking and Pastry

Christina Varela, Manahawkin-Silver, Baking and Pastry 

The ACA opened in 1981 on ACCC's Mays Landing Campus to meet the growing needs of the hospitality industry. Full-time classes meet five hours a day, Monday through Friday, in a morning, afternoon or evening session 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