Last year, Project Open Hand served over 750,000 prepared meals and, up to date, the agency has served over 15 million meals with love to people with HIV/AIDS, breast cancer, the homebound/critically ill, and seniors. That’s a lot of food and you’re probably wondering how we do it. Project Open Hand is lucky to have a team of amazing chefs on staff who passionately prepare meals for our clients every day.
Meet some of our chefs!
Originally from Maine, Richard worked as a chef in kitchens on both coasts before settling in San Francisco and working, mainly in small French bistros, for almost 20 years. Also an actor and director, Richard came to learn more about Project Open Hand and to be attracted to our mission while performing in a play about HIV. He became interested in working here and joined Open Hand in 1998. Richard is responsible for the HIV meal production, as well as supervising volunteers in the kitchen and developing recipes and menus for Open Hand clients.
Gloria Madlansacay graduated with a business degree from De La Salle University in Manila, Philippines and embarked on a career in the fashion industry in New York. She moved to San Francisco in 2003 to work at an import company managing inventory and production. After two years she decided to follow her passion for cooking and enrolled at the Le Cordon Bleu California Culinary Academy. During her time at the academy she had an eight month internship in Madrid, Spain. Chef Gloria joined Project Open Hand in 2008 as a Line Cook and she has since been promoted to Kitchen Administrative Manager where she co-manages all kitchen operations alongside Chef Richard and Chef Amy.
Food has always been an influence in Chef Amy’s life. She grew up in Lodi, Califor¬nia with a family who owned a meat market and loved entertaining large groups. She attended the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco and enjoyed a six year apprenticeship in Italy. She gained experience at various San Francisco restau¬rants, catering, and private chefing before joining the Project Open Hand team of chefs where she is thrilled to have the opportunity to give back to the community of San Francisco. Her cohesive Senior Lunch Program staff has a unique blend of chefs from various parts of the world. Chefs Nikki, Germàn, Jaime, Skot, Vyvyan, and Vladimir make up the dynamic team helping Chef Amy to produce up to 1,500 daily meals for seniors in the Bay Area.