Topic: Branding Through Networking

Program Details:

  • Date: Wednesday, November 13th, 2019
  • Time: 4:30 networking, 5:30 program, 6:30 dinner
  • Location: Fox Valley Technical College, Ione’s Dining Room (E140) on the Appleton Main Campus
  • Presenters: Chef Jeff Igel

Registration is open until Noon on Monday November 11th.

Not a member? Not a problem! Attend as a guest up to two times per program year. The guest fee for one program is $40 and can be paid on the PayPal site you are directed to when you register online.


Our presenter this month is Chef Jeff Igel from the Culinary Arts and Hospitality programs at Fox Valley Technical College.  With 35 years of cooking experience as a road map, Chef Jeff will take us through his career from growing up a “poor fat kid” through quadrupling the Culinary Arts program in 10 years.  Chef Jeff will share how building brand recognition and networking were his keys that provided the WIN-WIN formula for success including building the $1.8 million dollar Culinary Arts Theatre and amassing a scholarship endowment over $700,000.

About the Speakers:

          Jeffrey S. Igel

Chef Jeff is the Program Director of the Culinary Arts & Hospitality Department at Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton, Wisconsin.  He focuses on outreach for the Culinary Arts, Accelerated Culinary Arts, Hospitality Management, Foodservice Production, Advanced Baking and Kitchen Steward programs.  He has taught classes and developed curriculum for many classes including Food, Beverage & Labor Cost Controls; Introduction to Hospitality; Meat Identification; and Grilling, Smoking & BBQ.  “Chef Jeff” has spent his entire career in the restaurant and hospitality industry, serving in many capacities including: Senior Director of the Wisconsin Restaurant Association Education Foundation, Lecturer at the University of Wisconsin – Stout, Instructor at Madison Area Technical College, Catering Director for the University of Wisconsin and a Professional Chef for more than 35 years.


Chef Jeff obtained his Doctorate of Barbecue Philosophy (Ph.B.) from the Kansas City Barbecue Society, one of only 33 ever awarded.  He holds three degrees from the University of Wisconsin – Stout including a Master of Science in Vocational Education with emphasis in Hospitality Administration and Bachelor of Science Degrees in Hotel & Restaurant Management and Vocational, Technical and Adult Education.  He holds an Associates Degree in Restaurant & Hotel Cookery from Moraine Park Technical College and a Technical Diploma in Dietary Management from Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. He has been certified by the American Culinary Federation (ACF) as a Certified Executive Chef (CEC), a Certified Culinary Educator (CCE), a Certified Culinary Administrator (CCA) and a Master BBQ Cook (MBBQ).  He also holds certifications from the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation as a Foodservice Management Professional (FMP), from the International Food Service Executives Association (IFSEA) as a Certified Food Executive (CFE), from the Kansas City Barbecue Society (KCBS) as a Certified Barbecue Judge (CBJ), and from the Dietary Managers Association as a Certified Dietary Manager (CDM) and a Certified Food Protection Professional (CFPP).  

In 2017, Chef Jeff was honored as the first John Bertoldi “BBQ Person of the Year” for the State of Wisconsin.  In 2012 he was recognized as a “Terrific Teacher” by a local television station. In both 2008 and 2011 he was named the Outstanding Academic Advisor of the Year at Fox Valley Technical College (FVTC).  In 2006, he was inducted into the American Academy of Chefs (AAC), the honor society of the American Culinary Federation (ACF). In 2005 he was presented with the Salute to Excellence Award by the Wisconsin Restaurant Association’s Education Foundation and was also selected as the American Culinary Federation – Fox Valley Culinary Association (FVCA) Chef of the Year.  In 2003 he was named the Outstanding Restaurateur of the Year by the Big Four Chapter of the Wisconsin Restaurant Association (WRA), received the Vocational Administrator Award from the Fox Valley Association for Career and Technical Education, a Courtesy Award from the Appleton Rotary Club and recognized by a local television station as being a “Hometown Hero.” In 1999 he was named the Outstanding Industry Partner by the Wisconsin Pork Producers.  In 1997 he was named the Distinguished Alumnus of the Year by Moraine Park Technical College and was also given an Honorary Award by the Wisconsin Family & Consumer Educators.  

He serves as president and organizer of the Fox Valley BBQ Forum, is a past president and currently serves as the treasurer on the board of directors of the American Culinary Federation – Fox Valley Culinary Association (chefs), is a past president and current board member of the Wisconsin Restaurant Association – Big Four Chapter (restaurateurs) and serves as a director emeritus on the Wisconsin Restaurant Association Education Foundation state board.


He is married to his lovely wife of 30 years Paula Kay and is the proud father of their two grown children, daughter Cassandra and son Jake.