Meet our Chefs of the Year | Chef Appreciation Week | Part 1

September 12, 2023

Compass Group chefs passionately believe in​ the power of food to bring people together. They create a positive impact both in the industry and​ across the entire food system. Chef Appreciation​ Week is the opportunity to share how our chefs​ and their teams serve so much more than​ food.

Join us in celebrating our talented chefs and learning more about their unique backgrounds, inspirations, and accomplishments. Happy Chef Appreciation Week!

Doran Payne

Executive Chef
Bon Appetit Management Company

Chef won a prestigious international scholarship from The James Beard Foundation to continue his studies at the world-renowned Le Cordon Bleu Paris. His successful career has spanned the globe in some of the finest restaurants in the world, and now showcases diverse recipes from cultures around the world at our Chicago corporate café as an integral team member setting the highest standards.

Laura Comer

Executive Chef

Laura is committed to championing community engagement, wellness initiatives, environmental sustainability, and social responsibility. A partnership with farms and suppliers to source sustainable and locally grown ingredients supports the area’s economy and reduces the carbon footprint associated with food production and transportation. To encourage healthier choices, Chef promotes nutrition education and access. 

Paul Kennedy

Regional Executive Chef
Morrison Living

Paul’s culinary background of worldly cuisines inspires him to create menus that challenge even the most steadfast “meat and potatoes” resident to try something new. Balancing flavor with nutrition, he developed a scratch pizza dough with no added salt that guests are raving about.

Thomas Gilbert

Senior Executive Chef
Chartwells HE

Chef Tom Gilbert does an amazing job building teams on campus that perform at a high level.  His team of well-trained executive chefs and sous chefs support a dynamic and complex dining program to satisfy demanding expectations.  Both his train-the-trainer approach and the-right-people-in-the-right-role philosophy create a tight-knit, cohesive group well positioned for advancement