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Kona residents win ACF Western Region awards


Kona residents Jean Hull and Ken Love were recently recognized by The American Culinary Federation Western Region at the federation’s conference in Oakland, Calif. Both are members of the ACF Kona Kohala Chefs Association.

Jean Hull received the President’s Medallion, which is awarded to members who exemplify culinary excellence and leadership and have contributed their expertise to the advancement of the culinary profession. Hull, a certified culinary educatior, member of the American Academy of Chefs and owner of Hospitality Consulting by Jean, is a Kailua-Kona resident and long-time champion of culinary arts on the Big Island, serving as Associate Professor of Culinary Arts at the University of Hawaii Center at West Hawaii for more than 14 years.

Hull spearheads annual Kona Kohala Chefs fundraisers and programs, including the award-winning Chef and Child initiative that teaches West Hawaii second graders how to make nutritious food choices. She has also been the driving force behind the continuing Equip the Kitchens campaign for the future Hawaii Community College at Palamanui campus.

Ken Love, executive director of Master Food Preservers and the statewide Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers, received the Cutting Edge Award, which is given to members who provide exemplarily leadership and service to the culinary profession.

The Captain Cook resident is a long-time, outspoken advocate for the use of locally grown food. He serves as an ongoing educational resource for farmers to create value added products and in 2012-13 spearheaded a statewide exotic fruit series held in 16 locations to teach grocers, chefs and consumers the benefits of 11 little-used fruits.

His educational outreach went global after appearing in the 2012 feature documentary film, “The Fruit Hunters.”

The ACF Western Region has 29 chapters and named five Cutting Edge and six President’s Medallions recipients this year. The federation offers educational resources, training, apprenticeship and accreditation to enhance the professional growth of all chefs.

American Culinary Federation Kona Kohala Chefs Association

ACF is the largest, professional, non-profit organization for chefs and cooks in the nation. Founded in 1980, the Kona Kohala chapter is comprised of food service professionals, vendors, growers and culinary enthusiasts. Membership is open and the group meets the first week of the month during lunch at changing restaurants. www.konakohalachefs.org.