Main Navigation Menu

GRCC Cooks Presenters

2013-2014 Presenters


Joe Borello

                Joe Borrello is the Executive Director of Tasters Guild International; and is the author of "Recipes from Wineries of the Great Lakes" and "Ask the Wine Guy: Everything You Wanted to Know About Wine, but Didn't Know Who to Ask." He is also the Managing Director of Tasters Guild's International Wine Judging, one of the largest in the country. Joe is a member of the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education at GRCC as well as its past chairman and a charter inductee into the school's Hospitality Hall of Fame. Joe and his wife, Barb, have made numerous trips to Italy researching and testing the pasta, risotto, and Italian recipes offered in their cooking classes. Register for Joe's workshop click here.

Joseph M. George

                Chef Joseph George is currently the Executive Chef of Kent Country Club in Grand Rapids Michigan where his cuisine is as diverse as the membership of the oldest Club in Michigan. Joseph has arrived here from Traverse City where he was the Executive Chef/Food and Beverage Director of the Club at LochenHeath. He studied many years under Steve Stallard of Midland Country Club and has now been the Executive Chef for over 6 years in three prestigious organizations. While studying under Stallard he has worked for world renowned Chefs such as: Thomas Keller – The French Laundry, Grant Achatz – Alienia, Richard Sturgeon – The Marine Hotel Troon and David Dempsey – Gordon Ramsey's Amaryllis. Joseph has also had the privilege of working with both Chef Angus Campbell and Chef Robert Garlough on the culinary text book Modern Garde Manger. Chef Joseph George plans to continue his culinary career by being innovative, attentive and fundamentally sound with the plan of someday opening his own restaurant. Register for Joe's workshops click here.

Josef Huber

                Chef Josef Huber recognized his passion for cooking early in his career. His journey to culinary excellence began at age 16 in the 5 star, 5 diamond Elisabeth Park Hotel in Salzburg, Austria. This initial foray into the culinary realm caused a world tour of training and employment opportunities. Chef Huber's resume includes training in the Imperial and Bristol Hotel in Venice, Austria; The Regency in Bangkok, Thailand; the Breakers in Palm Bach, Florida; and the Mandarin Oriental in Hawaii and California. Notable chefs he has trained with include: Bocuse, Verge, Palmer and Le Notre. For the past fifteen years Chef Huber has displayed his considerable talent and management expertise as the Executive Chef at the world-renowned Amway Grand Plaza Hotel. During this time, Chef Huber has orchestrated a culinary brigade which was awarded the first ever and only AAA, 5-diamond restaurant in the state of Michigan. Josef Huber is known for combining multi-ethnic cuisine with traditional cooking to bring forth a tour de-force for the palate. His recipes have been featured in Gourmet Magazine, The Palm Beach Post, Food Arts Magazine, the San Francisco Chronicle and Examiner, and Rogue and Noir. He has appeared on several cooking shows including the development of his own cooking video series, Culinary Extraordinaire, in 2004. Register for Joseph's workshops click here.


Raymond Kusmack

                Chef Raymond Kusmack is an Executive Chef for Aramark Higher Education, at Central Michigan University in Mount Pleasant, Michigan. Chef Ray is an American Culinary Federation Certified Executive Chef and Certified Chef D'Cuisine. He is a graduate of The Culinary Institute of America and has been a Corporate Chef for Dow Chemical, Executive Chef at Tapawingo Restaurant (cooking for Mario Batali on several occasions), Executive Chef at Kellogg World Headquarters Aramark, where he has taken gold medals for district, regional, and national cooking competitions judged by chefs Charlie Trotter and David Burke. Chef Ray has also apprenticed at acclaimed restaurants while working with some of America's best chefs: The French Laundry (Thomas Keller), Trio (Grant Achatz), Handkes Cuisine (Certified Master Chef Hartmut Handke), and locally the 1913 Room (Chef Chris Madson, CCC) at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel.  Register for Ray's workshops click here.

Kathleen Schiefler

                Chef Kathleen is a hometown girl and a graduate of the GRCC Culinary program. She has traveled the world studying foods, traditions, and international customs and also attended stints at Ecole de Cuisine LaVarene in Burgundy, The French Pastry School in Chicago and the CIA in Napa Valley.

She brings her highly respected talents - as a chef, 18-year veteran of the catering industry, former owner of a specialty food and wine shop, and writer and teacher - to all of her classes, giving a perspective that is dashed with tales of history, splashed with inspiration and baked with practical real-life experience.

Today, Kathleen merges her passions for hospitality in inspiring ways with Kathleen and Company - developing creative solutions in marketing, culinary arts, merchandising, purchasing, and customer relations. She also continues to indulge her passions with the arts and gardening, and is featured at numerous speaking and teaching engagements throughout the city.  Register for Kathleen's workshops click here.

Michael Schafer Esq., The Wine Counselor®


                Michael Schafer Esq., The Wine Counselor®, is the charismatic wine educator, speaker, Sommelier, CSW, writer and consultant who entertains while educating. His humorous and fun approach to wine is reflected in his trademark phrase, "I taste bad wine so you don't have to"®

Michael has taught at The International Culinary School of The Art Institute of Michigan and Macomb County Community College. He has also been the keynote speaker at several food and wine conferences, wine festivals and wine expos around the United States. Michael has authored articles included in publications of the Michigan Chefs de Cuisine, 944 Magazine, NW Michigan's Second Wave and Windy Chefs as well as a cover story for Michigan Wine Country magazine. When he's not teaching, doing speaking engagements and television spots, consulting, or writing, Michael enjoys judging international wine competitions including the local judging held by Tasters Guild International. Register for Michael's workshops click here.

Chris Wessely

                In conjunction with The Grand Rapids Sport & Social Club (GRSSC), Chris also directed his passion back to food, taking it to the next level. Chef Wessely pursued his culinary degree and graduated as valedictorian of his class in the spring of 2011 from the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education. Chef Wessely retains a strong fine-dining culinary work experience, from Louis Benton's Fine Dining Steak House here in Grand Rapids to The Bay Harbor Yacht Club's À la carte Restaurant in Bay Harbor, Michigan.

In addition to an AAS in Culinary Arts, Chris has a BA in Political Science, Communication, and Japanese. He completed a highly competitive immersion exchange program in Tokyo, Japan where he also furthered his Japanese culinary studies. Chef Wessely was the cofounder of the Personal Chef Group company, successfully building up the business and eventually sold it in 2011 to pursue further endeavors via the GRSSC.

Today, Chef Wessely has combined his love of cooking with the "socialness" of the GRSSC's events. The result, Simple Sushi! Chef Wessely truly embraces the mission to share his culinary knowledge and passion for sushi and finds that cooking classes are a wonderful medium to pass on skills, allowing individuals to create healthy, delicious food on their own in the comfort of their home.

Chef Wessely also teaches sushi classes at the GRCC Cooks program as a guest chef and his professional awards include the Extraordinary Culinary Student Award, Steven Raichlen's Ultimate Grilling Recipe Contest Winner, and First Place Winner in the Hudsonville Chili Cook-Off.  Register for Chris' workshops click here.