Current Article

For immediate release — March 17, 2011

Good food, great chefs and learning how to cook are popular on TV — just think about “Hell’s Kitchen,” “Top Chef” and “Food Network Stars,” for example. All of those chefs and everything they learned had to start with some formal training (even though moms and family members deserve credit for early efforts!). More than 150 accomplished chefs in the Dallas area got their start with the Food and Hospitality Institute at El Centro College.

Many of those chefs are volunteering their time and skills for a special event, “Bits and Bites,” to help raise funds for the institute on Sunday, March 27, from 4 to 7 p.m. The evening’s festivities will feature foods prepared by El Centro’s former students and friends of the college. A variety of wine, beer, sake and cider will be served as well. The cost is $40 in advance and $45 at the door; the event will be held on the downtown campus of El Centro College, 801 Main St.

During “Bits and Bites,” three veterans of the food and hospitality industry in Dallas will be honored:

  • Dolores Snyder, founder of the Dallas chapter of Les Dames D’Escoffier
  • Jo-Jo LaBarba of American Produce (posthumously)
  • Anthony “Tony” LaBarba of American Wine (also posthumously)

Each will be recognized with the 2011 Founders Award for their many years of service to El Centro College students.

Tickets can be purchased in advance online at Click on “donate now,” complete the form, click on “other” and enter “Bits and Bites” in the comment box. Purchase tickets by mail with checks made payable to “DCCCD Foundation” and send to: El Centro College Business Division, ATTN: Cindy Bozzelli-Duke, 801 Main St., Dallas, Texas, 75202.

For information, contact either Jessie Yearwood, registered El Centro dietitian, by phone at (214) 860-2608 or by e-mail at; or Cindy Bozzelli-Duke, (214) 860-2315,

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Press contact: Ann Hatch