Tracy DeWitt, Scottsdale, Ariz., received the American Culinary Federation Inc. (ACF) Western Region Pastry Chef of the Year award at the 2010 ACF Western Regional Conference last month.
Sponsored by Splenda®, the 2010 Western Region Pastry Chef of the Year award recognizes a pastry chef who has displayed a passion for the craft, has an accomplished reputation in the pastry field and has given back by sharing his or her skills and knowledge. DeWitt was one of three candidates up for the award.
She will compete for the national title against the winners from the two other ACF regions at the 2010 ACF national convention in Anaheim, Calif., Aug. 2-5.
DeWitt began her baking career in a French-Viennese pastry shop in New Jersey and is currently lead pastry chef-instructor at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts (formerly Scottsdale Culinary Institute), where she has worked for 15 years. She received her training at The Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, N.Y., where she earned an associate's degree in culinary arts in 1988 and a certificate in baking and pastry in 1994. She also earned a bachelor's degree in business management from American InterContinental University, Hoffman Estates, Ill.
Her other accomplishments include a gold medal at the 2006 National Bread and Pastry Team Championship, a silver medal at the 2009 National Team Pastry Championship and first place in the Food Network Challenge: Extreme Candy Carnival.