Rouxbe, the world’s leading online culinary school, has announced two new additions to its team: Dr. Randall McNamara has joined as director of special projects and Dan Marek has joined as a chef instructor.
“We are honoured to have these leaders join our team and fill critical roles within our company as online learning continues to gain tremendous momentum,” said Ken Rubin, chief culinary officer at Rouxbe. “Both Randall and Dan bring extensive knowledge and experience, and I am confident their expertise and insights will guide our innovation and create new paths for success for everyone in culinary education.”
An educator, chef, and author, McNamara specializes in culinary history, identity, and culture. He has travelled extensively throughout Central Asia and further east to China and Singapore, where he captured these experiences for his book, Food Culture in Russia and Central Asia.
After co-founding a professional cooking school in Austin, Texas, Dr. McNamara spent a decade with Le Cordon Bleu Schools North America before becoming Executive Director of Brightwater: A Center for the Study of Food in Arkansas. In his new role, McNamara will support Rouxbe with projects related to curriculum design, accreditation, grant writing and program implementation.
McNamara is the former chair of the board for the International Association of Culinary Professionals and holds degrees from Columbia, Nova Southeastern, and The University of Texas.
Marek joins Rouxbe from Whole Kids Foundation where he oversees education programs including the Healthy Teachers Program. That program is designed to provide teachers and school staff with nutrition inspiration and healthy cooking techniques to transform their own wellbeing and serve as healthy role models for students. He also heads education for school food service professionals in districts that have committed to going back to scratch cooking. In his role at Rouxbe, Marek will be responsible for providing instruction and support for students in both professional and consumer-based courses.
In addition to his work with the Whole Kids Foundation, Marek previously worked as a Healthy Eating Educator at Whole Foods Market’s flagship store in Austin, Texas. He also taught classes in culinary techniques at Austin Community College, The Natural Epicurean Academy and Le Cordon Bleu. He is a regular volunteer, cooking or speaking about nutrition, for the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, Marathon Kids, Health Alliance for Austin Musicians, and the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Austin and Central Texas.
Marek is a board member of Slow Food Austin and earned his BA in Journalism from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University.