Hometown: Rochester, Minnesota
Family: Husband, Adam; children Penny, 2, and Oliver, 3
Rochester native: This is my hometown. I’ve lived here all my life. I met my husband, Adam, and got involved in his family business, Bowman Tool and Machining, where I worked as a project manager. But then I decided to spend more time at home to be with our children when we started a family.
An established favorite: I started going to Signature Chefs about seven years ago when I met my husband. That’s how I was introduced to [the gala] and to the March of Dimes. It’s always been one of our favorite events of the year, something we really look forward to. It’s a good excuse to dress up and eat lots of wonderful food, all to support a terrific cause.
For the health of the babies: The money from this event goes to the March of Dimes to support education, like getting information to mothers in the hospital, as well as financial support for families who have babies with medical problems. It also funds a great deal of research for women and families. Overall, Signature Chefs benefits the March of Dime’s mission to help babies get a good start on a healthy life.
Change of pace: Being part of the manufacturing industry before this, it’s a nice change to get involved in the March of Dimes as a volunteer for something that’s nonprofit. Last year, I was on the committee and loved it. This year I was ready to do a little more, so I stepped up to being the chair. We’re looking forward to a very exciting event.
Foodie heaven: We bring together some of the area’s best chefs. They provide small portions of an appetizer, entree and dessert. It’s unique because you get to sample and enjoy a wide variety of food. It’s not one person serving you one meal; you have a dozen chefs serving you the best of the best that they make. It’s an excellent culinary experience for anyone like me who really loves food.
Star power: We have a number of new features, and we’re hoping people who haven’t come to Signature Chefs Gala before will join us to check them out. New this year, we’ll have a whiskey flight bar, as well as a mini-live auction. Our biggest addition, though, is celebrity chef Daniel Green who’s coming to us from Minneapolis. He’s hosting the event, as well as making a signature dessert and serving as a judge for the competition.
Heading out: When we’re not working or volunteering, our family really enjoys being active. We share a small farm with our extended family just north of Rochester that’s about 240 acres, with a pond and a picnic area. We have a great time together out there. We often head to Lake City, too, where we go boating. We spend as much time outdoors as we possibly can.
Pride in community: I love Rochester and southeastern Minnesota because we’re in close proximity to a metro area; however, we have a really nice, close-knit, clean, safe community here. Those things are hard to come by all in one package. We are blessed to have this type of unique place to live.
Tracy Will is a freelance writer who lives and works in Rochester.