Trading in his chef knives to teach Chicago youth a trade is what drives David Blackmon these days. He is the Career Technical Education (CTE) Program Manager for Culinary Arts, Agriculture Science Education, Automotive Technology, Diesel, Technology, Automotive Body Repair, Manufacturing and Logistic programs. His CTE Programs are exclusively offered in the Chicago Public School system. They give high school students, the chance to get a head start on preparing for college and a career. His curriculum integrates common core subjects like math, science and writing and applies them to an industry along with hands-on training in real state of the art industrial labs.
Under David’s direction CPS students have earned nationally recognized industrial level certifications as well as job placements to help pay for college straight out of high school!
But here is where David really get things cooking… So to speak.
To date, his CPS CTE students have received over $20 million in college scholarships and have earned over 7000 industry level certifications while in high school!
For more than 25 years, David has worked as a professional chef in Chicago’s thriving restaurant scene and was personal chef for a number of NBA players and their families. He has a passion for teaching his culinary craft with others and lives by his own motto. “Engage, Educate and Empower. There is nothing in life better then sharing your knowledge with others.”
He enjoys spending his downtime with his wife, and twin children. He is currently working on his first cookbook entitled, “The Best Way to Her Heart.” And yes, he does all the cooking at home.