Vice President

Chef Jack Birren

A native to Antioch, Illinois, Jack Birren sought out his culinary beginnings at Johnson & Wales University

in Providence, Rhode Island. During this time, he was accepted into the Teaching Assistant and Fellow

Scholarship Program where he worked with the culinary instructors in labs educating the students. It

was here his passion for education began. After receiving his Bachelor’s Degree in Culinary Arts in 1999,

Jack was one of thirteen students awarded a full ride scholarship for a Master’s Degree through the

Management Development Program at Johnson & Wales University. Jack also competed and medaled

in several competitions that took place in NYC and Seattle. He went on to graduate with his Master of

Arts in Teaching in 2001 and found himself exploring the industry for 10 years before finding his true

niche in teaching.


In 2004, he was called back to the Midwest, and there he expanded his enthusiasm for situational

leadership and motivating his employees. In 2010, Chef Birren starting teaching Garde Manger part-time

at Waukesha County Technical College and in 2011 he seized the opportunity to teach full-time. He

obtained his Certified Executive Chef certification through the ACF in May of 2014, and was an integral

part in awarding WCTC exemplary status during their 7-year accreditation. He has coached secondary

and post-secondary culinary hot food teams to numerous awards. Many of his students have gone on to

be successful proprietors. Chef Birren incorporated his learning experiences during his years of

management to develop his teaching philosophy, "Every student is here for a different reason. As a chef

instructor, I feel it is my job to find what that reason is and instill in them the passion, dedication and

confidence that it will take to get them to reach their goal."


People seek out membership in the ACF for many different reasons. Being that most of us are in the

hospitality business, we strive to exceed our guests’ expectations. Jack Birren believes the members of

the ACF are truly guests, and if elected Vice President he will strive to meet and exceed those

expectations  of membership while continuing to promote and expand the ACF Chefs of Milwaukee chapter