Gerald Ford, CMC
Master Chef Ford is the Founder and Culinary Director of Legit Culinary Concepts. In 2017, Chef Ford achieved the highest level of certification in the culinary field earning the title, Certified Master Chef. This designation, presented by the American Culinary Federation, is held by only 84 chefs nationwide. He is also the Captain of the ACF National Culinary Olympic Team USA, a position earned in 2017.
Chef Ford’s prior positions include: Executive Chef at Ford Plantation, Richmond Hill, GA, Executive Sous Chef at Everglades Club, Palm Beach, FL, and Executive Sous Chef at Westchester Country Club, Rye, NY. Additionally, he has held a variety of positions in restaurants in the United States and France. Highlights include Moulin de Mougins, Asiate, Aujourd’ Hui, and Eleven Madison Park.
Born in Michigan, Chef Ford began his formal culinary education in a local vocational-technical training and development program at Fordson High School in Dearborn. He then went on to Henry Ford College, which later awarded him Alumni of the Year 2018. While attending Henry Ford College, he joined the Ritz Carlton Dearborn in their restaurant and banquet operations. The connections made at the Ritz Carlton motivated him to pursue his bachelor’s degree from the Culinary Institute of America (CIA), located in Hyde Park, NY. While attending the CIA, he worked closely with Certified Master Chefs Ken Arnone, Russell Scott, and Olivier Andreini and completed his externship at Commander’s Palace in New Orleans, LA. Chef Ford went on to represent the CIA at the 2002 national San Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef competition where he won Best Young Commis Rotisseur, Northeast Region. In 2001, after winning the Les Amis d’Escoffier competition in New York, NY, he was awarded the opportunity to work at the three-Michelin-starred Moulin de Mougins in Mougins, France. While at the Moulin, Chef Ford began to focus his passion and chart his path toward excellence. He returned to the CIA as a Teaching Assistant at the Colavita Center for Italian Food and Wine before finishing his bachelor’s degree.
Following graduation from the CIA with a Bachelor of Hospitality Management, Chef Ford joined the opening team for the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in New York City, then went on to work at Jasper White’s Summer Shack in the Mohegan Sun Casino, Uncasville, CT and at the Four Seasons Hotel, Boston, MA. In 2006, he returned to France as Executive Chef of Chateau Robert in the village of Montgaillard. Following his time in France, Chef Ford began his work in private clubs, working as chef de cuisine under Master Chef Olivier Andreini.
Legit Culinary Concepts was born in 2018, from over twenty-five years of experience traveling, competing, leading, and culinary mastery. The organization aims to improve the quality of life for chefs and culinarians around the world by providing tools and systems tested and developed with the experience of a master craftsman. Collaborating with the greatest minds in the culinary field, Legit Culinary Concepts looks forward to contributing to the bright future of the Hospitality Industry.