Employee Spotlight: Chef David Padilla
One of the things that we are most proud of at Adolescent Growth is the amount of care and love that we put into the meals that our clients eat at our facilities. The food we provide is always the highlight of family workshops and even most of our clients’ stay. Meals at Adolescent Growth are always memorable for our clients not only because they get to eat scrumptious meals but also because of the feeling of belonging that it provides.
The man behind these meals is Chef David Padilla. Chef David is the ‘magician in the kitchen’ so to speak and he is the man behind the delicious and nutritious meals that are served to our clients daily. Chef David graduated from Cordon Bleu School of Culinary Arts in 2002 and went on to work as an Executive Chef in popular restaurants including The Walt Disney Company and Planet Hollywood, “I have worked for a lot of high end and celebrity parties during my career and have served different types of cuisines.”
However after many years in the industry, Chef David felt like he needed a change of pace, “I wanted something different. Something that wouldn’t require me to be away from home 12 to 16 hours a day. Because of my natural caring personality, a friend of mine suggested mental health facilities – up until that point, it never dawned on me that those positions existed!” In December 2016, Chef David completed his last holiday service and started with Adolescent Growth in January 2017.
Working at Adolescent Growth has been a great experience for Chef David, “It has been a great adventure! Learning about mental health as well as being able to help out with the clients has really opened my eyes about mental health and I have embraced it fully.”
When asked what he loves most about working at Adolescent Growth, Chef David says, “There are so many things I like about working here! I love working with clients and being able to touch someone’s life and make an impact. I love the staff from corporate to various staff members at our locations. I have been blessed to work with so many great people and I love working with families and making them feel welcomed and assuring them that their loved ones are well taken care of and that their tummies are always happy.”