Culinard in Mobile - Culinary Arts School Faculty
Chef Paul Wooten
A native of Burlington, North Carolina, Chef Paul Wooten began cooking professionally at a young age. He began his culinary journey working at some of the top restaurants on the North Carolina coast. Working his way up through the ranks seasoned him for his culinary future.
Chef Wooten moved to Greensboro to attend college but it was his night job where he really excelled. Having made it to executive chef by age 23, Chef Wooten's college experience took a back seat to what was to be his true calling. At 28, Chef Wooten left Greensboro to attend the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. It was there where his skills and palate began to flourish studying under master chefs.
Chef Wooten's next stop was Atlanta. He began to make a name for himself in the culinary world, helming Midtown's Vinocity Wine Bar and Restaurant, followed by Sweet Low Down.
Love and marriage brought Chef Wooten to the Mobile area while passion for food brought him to Culinard. After teaching for four years, Chef Wooten was promoted to Program Director in the spring of 2014. His passion for food and teaching is evident throughout the Mobile campus.
Chef Michael Blucas
Chef Michael Blucas, a native of Mobile, began his culinary career in the burgeoning restaurant scene of the mid 90's. In the time since, he has grown from line cook and dishwasher to executive chef and general manager.
Chef Blucas has worked at a variety of restaurants, owned a restaurant and worked for a major food service distributor as a salesman. According to Chef Blucas, the most satisfying job he has ever had though, by far, is teaching. He is currently teaching the Fundamentals of Culinary Arts evening class in Mobile.
Chef Chris Coker
Chef Coker began cooking in restaurants at a young age and settled in Boston where he attended Johnson and Wales University. He graduated with a degree in Culinary Arts and immediately took a position in the kitchen of Poe's Tavern, an award-winning Sullivan Island beachside restaurant near Charleston. There, he managed the restaurant's kitchen and dining room for five years before moving to Mobile, taking a position with the legendary Wintzell's Oyster House, where he rose to General Manager. At Culinard he currently teaches Culinary Fundamentals and Garde manager.
Chef Winona Mixon
While teaching elementary school for 25 years, Chef Wendy Mixon spent her free time catering and making wedding cakes. After retiring, she made the decision to move to Birmingham and go to culinary school.
While in school, she worked full-time as assistant pastry chef at The Bakery at Culinard. Upon completion of school, she was offered and accepted a pastry instructor position at Culinard in Birmingham.
Three years later, Chef Mixon moved on to the position of Executive Chef and Food and Beverage Director for the prestigious FarmLinks Golf Club in Sylacauga, Alabama, an affiliate of Honours Golf. She remained at the club for almost four years, until moving to Mobile in order to open Culinard where she serves as both a pastry instructor and a culinary instructor.