California Voices: Putting the spotlight on School Food Professionals

Welcome to the first edition of California Voices! Here, we’re featuring how some of social media’s most powerful voices, including parents, teachers, a collegiate student-athlete, a School Food Professional, and even a best-selling cookbook author, are sharing their perspective on how School Food Professionals are transforming school food and supporting students across California. 

Our California Voices series will continue to highlight people who are sharing their personal stories and experiences with the contribution and impact made by School Food Professionals. 

See the buzz for yourself and join the conversation with #CASchoolFoodPros and #PoweredBySchoolFoodPros on Instagram, TikTok, LinkedIn and Facebook.

Best-Selling Cookbook Author and James Beard Award-Winner Joanne Molinaro

Times have changed since Joanne, also known as @thekoreanvegan, was eating school food. Now, School Food Professionals are making kimchi! Joanne shares how incorporating more food from different cultures into school meals helps students feel welcomed and included. 


#ad I love how, more and more, school food professionals from all walks of life and backgrounds are cooking fresh, delicious, and diverse meals in California school kitchens. They’re using their skills to prepare and cook more foods that reflect the diverse tastes and smells that students have grown up with. For example. Korean foods are now items on school lunch menus! I think Korean food is actually perfect for school cafeterias. Why? Well, Korean food is all about cooking in bulk and meal prep. That’s why so much of the food is meant to be served cold. I also love how Korean food fits so perfectly inside the cafeteria tray. Banchan or “side dishes” are such an integral part of Korean cuisine and what better way to serve banchan than with that iconic cafeteria tray? That way, you get a little bit of everything! Check out (link in bio) to see what school food professionals are doing to cook and serve fresh, healthy, delicious meals in our schools every day! #PoweredBySchoolFoodPros #SchoolFoodPros @Powered By School Food Pros

♬ Blooming Memories of Our Last Spring – Jordy Chandra & Jordy Chandra Orchestra

School Food Professional TJ

School Food Professional TJ is part of the movement to improve school food. Through her work, she’s seen firsthand how professionals are incorporating more fresh ingredients and scratch cooking into their school menus.


#ad The future of school meals: Fresher, healthier, and delicious school meals prepared by School Food Professionals. Learn more at #PoweredbySchoolFoodPros #BetterSchoolMeals @Powered By School Food Pros

♬ original sound – TJ

Teacher Noelle Cheney

Teacher and self-proclaimed school lunch connoisseur Noelle celebrates how School Food Professionals do more than just cook healthy, delicious meals. They’re also an integral part of the school community, building positive relationships with students.

Collegiate Student-Athlete Haily Huynh

Haily, a student-athlete at UC Irvine, shouts out the School Food Professionals whose healthy school meals helped her to be ready to compete — on and off the court. 


For student-athletes like me, having access to healthy school lunches as a K-12 student was crucial. That’s why I’m so excited to see all the ways that California school food professionals are working towards improving school food ad. Join us as we work toward fresher, healthier school meals that empower kids in the classroom and beyond.Learn more at #CASchoolFoodPros #PoweredBySchoolFoodPros

♬ original sound – haily huynh

Author and Mother Ellie Hunja

Free school breakfast and lunch has changed the game for Ellie, an author and mother. Beyond making sure her kids have access to healthy meals, School Food Professionals have also helped her 5-year-old with sensory issues expand his palate by introducing recipes like fresh salads, fish po’boys and pupusas.

Speech-Language Pathologist Judy Lemon

Speech-language pathologist Judy shares how good-for-you food is vital to her students’ learning experience.

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