Baker College Dean of Culinary Appointed to Prestigious Commission

Tribune News Wire

MUSKEGON– Chef Tom Recinella, Dean of Culinary at Baker College and its Culinary Institute of Michigan (CIM), has been appointed to the American Culinary Federation Education Foundation Accrediting Commission (ACFEFAC) as the Central Region Education Representative, effective immediately.

Recinella will serve the national industry organization in this new role through 2024. Later this month, he will begin training to become a Site Visit Lead Evaluator, to help determine educational program grants of accreditation at culinary schools throughout the central region, which includes: Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, Texas, and Wisconsin.

“It’s imperative to have seasoned chefs and educators serving on the commission and overseeing policy that is relevant and impactful to culinary schools and the industry,” said Chef Recinella, CEC, AAC, HGT. “For myself and the CIM team, it is an honor to have one of our own taking an active role in helping to shape and move the accreditation process forward to meet the challenges and demands of the future, for our industry and its academics.”

Chef Tom, who has been in the culinary industry for more than 35 years and with Baker College’s Culinary Institute of Michigan since 2012, also is an ACF Approved Mentor for ACF Practical Exam Evaluators and an ACF Culinary Competition Judge, as well as a member of the Honorable Order of the Golden Toque, the highest acclaimed recognition a chef can receive in America.

The CIM and its students have thrived under the high standards of Chef Tom and his team’s leadership, earning hundreds of culinary competition medals over the years. Additionally, CIM Muskegon recently received new ACFEFAC seven-year grants of accreditation with exemplary status for both its culinary arts and baking and pastry programs. According to the ACF, Exemplary Programs symbolize the highest educational standards recognized by the ACFEFAC. The CIM Port Huron is currently under its initial ACFEFAC accreditation grant for its culinary arts and baking and pastry programs and will be eligible to receive consideration for exemplary status upon its ACFEFAC site visit.

The award-winning CIM offers associate degree programs focused on some of the fastest-growing areas of foodservice. CIM students, who can study culinary arts, baking and pastry, or food and beverage management, learn from experienced industry professionals and develop technical skills through intensive hands-on training in world-class culinary facilities. Student chefs also gain real-world experience working at Courses, a teaching restaurant, open to the public and located on each CIM campus.

More information on Baker College’s Culinary Institute of Michigan is available at


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