Maria Alvarez

Maria’s career began with a BSc in Microbiology in Costa Rica. But pursuing her interest in cooking has been an ongoing drive. It’s her desire to have her own restaurant, where people can enjoy savoring the delicacies of French cuisine mingled with the Spanish and Latin American tastes. With that goal in mind, she has spent considerable time working in restaurants in Costa Rica and Vancouver, to gain experience and further her culinary skills. Maria’s scholarship will help fund her course in Culinary Arts at Dubrulle’s.

Michelle Bouffard

After moving to Vancouver from Quebec City to study classical trumpet, Michelle began a wine course and discovered a new passion. Several courses followed through the Wine & Spirit Education Trust, and this spring she has written exams for her International Diploma. Meanwhile, she is employed as Sommelier at Marquis Wine Cellars. En route to her Masters of Wine, Michelle will be applying her scholarship to completing the Diploma Program for WSET.

Elizabeth Delesalle

Elizabeth has a BSc in Business Administration from Hawaii Pacific University. Her major was marketing… and then, the kitchen called. Thus, she has now completed the Baking and Pastry Arts Program at Vancouver Community College. Her goal is to become a famed Wedding Cake and Pastry specialist. Our Scholarship will help Elizabeth attend a five-day intensive Wedding Cake Course for Professionals, at the Culinary Institute of American, Greystone California Campus.

Christine Derek

Christine’s diverse interests suggest she has many talents. Her careers range from a BSC in Psychology and neuropsychological research, to 13 years as an Assistant Director in Vancouver’s film and television industry, and then, to completing the Professional Culinary and Pastry programs at Dubrulle International Culinary Arts/ The Dubrulle Art Institute of Vancouver. Christine’s scholarship will further her continued training at The Art Institute of Vancouver. Her special interests in sustainable agriculture, organic foods and the slow food movement are portents of a new and fascinating career.

Susie Findlay

Susie’s career began with a BA from UBC. She also has received the Certificat de Patissierie Elementaire from the Cordon Bleu in Ottawa, a Baker’s Certificate from Algonquin College, and has completed a course in Plated Desserts at the French Pastry School in Chicago. She has worked as an instructor at VCC, and as a pastry chef at several well known locations in both Vancouver and Toronto. Susie will use her Les Dames Scholarship to help her enroll in the Venture Program at BCIT and plans on opening her own storefront.

Dawn Johnstone

Dawn has extensive experience in both the restaurant and catering industries. Her roles have ranged from hostess…to bartending…to production chef, and supervisor. She is currently employed at Culinary Capers where she approaches all her tasks with dedication and energy. Dawn’s goal is to become a Sommelier. Dawn’s scholarship that will fund her Level II program with the International Sommelier Guild.

Trena Kraft

Trena has a background in Business Management and is currently involved in Corporate Sales and Marketing for Major the Gourmet. She is described as someone who has a keen sense of hospitality, who always goes the extra mile to ensure that the events she manages are a success. Trena’s scholarship will be used to enhance her credentials by taking the Wine & Spirit Education Trust, Level II program.

Michelle LeComte

Michelle’s knowledge of wine has been fostered by her work in specialty wine stores. She is now refining her expertise though courses offered by the International Sommelier Guild. Michelle’s scholarship will help with her sommelier courses at the Dubrulle Culinary Institute. Her ultimate goal is to open a small inn in the Okanagan, with a restaurant specializing in local, seasonal and organic foods, and showcasing an excellent cellar, featuring B.C. wines.

Jennifer Lewis

Jennifer recently completed the Asian Culinary Arts Program at VCC. When not in school, she works part-time at La Belle Auberge with Master Chef Bruno Marti. Jennifer’s passion for food, and eagerness to learn has also fired her enthusiasm for participating in culinary competitions. Her Les Dames Scholarship will assist in funding her continuing culinary studies in the Culinary Arts Program at Vancouver Community College.

Yvonne Lee

Yvonne’s goal is to become a well-trained and successful chef. She is currently enrolled in the Culinary Arts program at Vancouver Community College, and her Les Dames scholarship is helping fund her program. She has participated in two, Skills Canada Culinary Arts Competitions and has won both a Bronze and a Silver medal. This past year she has volunteered to mentor others who were competing. Yvonne has a passion for the culinary arts, and a strong desire to do well in whatever she tackles.

Michaela Morris

After several years cycle touring and working in Europe, Michaela returned to Vancouver to earn her degree in Linguistics and French. Time in France also inspired her desire to pursue a career in the wine industry. She has recently been Marketing and Logistics Manager for Liquid Art Fine Wines, and has also created her own business called, House Wine, conducting private wine-tasting parties and corporate wine seminars. Michaela scholarship goes toward The Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET)’s Diploma Program. This leads toward one of her long-term goals, a Master of Wine.

Samantha Schiefke

Samantha is a recent graduate from Terry Fox Secondary School in Port Coquitlam. While she has been very involved in leadership roles in high school, she’s also recognized that working with food has become a passion she is keen to follow. She has been awarded one of the scholarships offered by Northwest Culinary Academy of Vancouver, and an additional sum provided by Les Dames to help with her one-year Professional Culinary Program.

Jill Shumka

Jill would like to become one of Vancouver’s leaders in wedding cake design and production. With culinary training from The Art Institute of Vancouver – Dubrulle Culinary Arts, and a semester of wedding cake decorating at VCC, her creations are described as “awe inspiring”. Jill will direct her scholarship to an intensive wedding cake course at the Culinary Institute of America, Greystone, California Campus.

Taryn Wa

After recognizing her dreams and goals were related to the food industry, she has completed the Professional Culinary Program at Northwest Culinary Academy of Vancouver. In 2005 she has competed and won the gold medal at the BC Chef’s Association Hot! Competition live, showing exceptional skills and aptitude. Taryn’s scholarship has allowed her to complete the Advanced Pastry and Bread Program at NWCAV.

Melissa Webb

Melissa, from Barriere, B.C., has just completed Level Two of the professional Chef Training Program at the University College of the Cariboo, in Kamloops. A recent high school graduate, her strong desire to succeed as a chef apparently shines already in both the quality of her work and the passion and imagination with which she approaches cooking. Melissa’s scholarship is being applied to tuition for Level Three of her chef’s program. Melissa has many plans for her future, all of them ambitious and alluring.

Courtenay Welter

Courtenay has grown up knowing she has a passion for food. It obviously hasn’t diminished during her University training… in fact, it appears to have fueled her interest in the traditional methods and the styles of cooking in other countries. Her recent work experience has been gained in the areas of artisan breads and pastries. Courtenay’s scholarship will help fund her studies at Northwest Culinary Academy.

Rachel Welvaert

Rachel has been interested in food from an early age. Her recent success in being awarded a Les Dames scholarship shows that her passion for cooking continues, along with a strong interest in the business side of the food industry. She has worked in a number of restaurants and acts as a volunteer at food-related events. Rachael’s scholarship will help her attend the Culinary Arts Program at Vancouver Community College. She dreams of opening her own restaurant.

Victoria Yen

Vicki has a B.A. in Communication from Simon Fraser University, and is seeking to combine her experience gained in business, with her love of cooking. Vicki’s optimism and zeal are qualities that will help her be successful as she continues her education in the Culinary Arts at Dubrulle’s. Her scholarship will help make this possible. She would like to someday open a business that combines catering and introducing new food products to the market.