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For Immediate Release
Office of the First Lady
August 14, 2005

Cristeta Comerford Named White House Executive Chef

Mrs. Laura Bush announced today that Cristeta "Cris" Comerford has been named the White House Executive Chef. Ms. Comerford, the first woman to serve in the position, will be responsible for designing and executing menus for state dinners, social events, holiday functions, receptions and official luncheons hosted by President and Mrs. Bush.

Chef Cristeta "Cris" Comerford prepares a meal inside the White House kitchen in this July 17, 2002 photo. Mrs. Laura Bush announced on August 14, 2005 that Comerford has been named the White House Executive Chef. Comerford is the first woman to serve in the job.  White House photo by Tina Hager "I am delighted that Cris Comerford has accepted the position of White House Executive Chef," Mrs. Bush said. "Her passion for cooking can be tasted in every bite of her delicious creations."

Trained in French classical techniques and specializing in ethnic and American cuisine, Ms. Comerford has worked as an Assistant Chef in the White House kitchen since 1995. She has helped develop inventive menus that showcased American foods and wines for special White House events including the State Dinner in honor of Her Excellency, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, President of the Philippines; the Official Dinner in honor of His Excellency, Dr. Manmohan Singh, Prime Minister of the Republic of India; and a social dinner in celebration of William Shakespeare's birthday.

Ms. Comerford received her bachelor's degree in Food Technology from the University of the Philippines and gained culinary experience serving as Chef Tournant at Le Ciel in Vienna, Austria; Chef at Le Grande Bistro at The Westin Hotel in Washington, D.C.; and Chef at The Colonnade at the ANA Hotel in Washington, D.C., where she implemented the "Culinary Arts Gallery" which showcased the best of American fine cuisine.

In addition, she collaborated with Chef John Ash to promote American game cooking and assisted and coordinated on the "East Meets West" promotion featuring the late Barbara Tropp. Ms. Comerford melds training received from institutions such as The Education Institute, American Hotel and Motel Association with experiences with some of the nation's most innovative chefs in the California wine country and San Francisco restaurants to produce original dishes with American flavor.

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