Brightwater: A Center for the Study of Food at NorthWest Arkansas Community College has named Chef Steven Jenkins the new director of culinary operations.
In addition to handling day-to-day activities within the school, Jenkins will work with faculty, students and public events, according to a statement from Brightwater.
Jenkins is tasked with furthering the school’s mission to bolster the area’s food system, develop food recovery efforts and build community partnerships, according to Brightwater.
Executive director Glenn Mack said with Jenkins’ hire Brightwater now has two doctorate degree holders who are also chefs on staff. “Steven brings many strengths to the team, not the least of them are innovation and entrepreneurship,” said Mack, who has the other doctorate within the program.
A Northwest Arkansas native, Jenkins has previous experience as a marketing consultant and executive chef, and he came to Brightwater in August, after serving as assistant professor in the nutrition and dietetics department at Saint Louis University and as program director for food innovation and entrepreneurship, according to Brightwater.
At SLU, Jenkins worked to create farm-to-table programs for public school systems in the surrounding area and also partnered with a women’s shelter to develop a food product for retail sales, as an exercise to help the women re-establish their independence in the workplace, according to Brightwater. The product was then sold in 32 locations.