With more than 30 years of wide-ranging culinary experience, from The Restaurant School of Philadelphia all the way to France, Calvin Taylor, our Culinary Services Director, has a remarkable story. Starting as a dishwasher, Calvin worked hard to become a server, and through more hard work became front-of-house supervisor. Through it all, he felt his real interest was to be among the chefs. This interest piqued when the chefs began to teach him how to cook! One mentor he will never forget is Chef Leon McMillian. Leon had a true passion for cooking, and this left a lasting impression on Calvin.
After learning the ropes from Leon, Calvin completed an internship at Sheraton. Shortly after, he found his way to a local Olive Garden, then crossed over to the senior living industry at a Sunrise community. Here, he developed a love for seniors and ensured that their meals consisted of great taste and nutrition. While Calvin can cook just about anything, he says his specialties are chicken with a brandy mustard cream sauce, and a fruit tart with scratch-made crust. Yum!
As talented as Calvin is at cooking, he’s an even better family man. About 30 years ago, Calvin met the love of his life – Miss Jennifer! They have beautiful son named Trey, and his family is the highlight of Calvin’s life. “I would not be where I am today if it were not for them,” Calvin says. When Trey developed food allergies at an early age, Calvin’s knowledge as a chef and Jennifer’s expertise as a nurse formed the perfect partnership to ensure that Trey remains safe and well-fed.
This born-and-raised Philly man gets so much satisfaction from keeping his residents happy, but he also has many interests outside of the kitchen. He enjoys football and baseball, and has decided, after playing in the past, that he’s now better suited to watching. Another true passion of Calvin’s is writing music! He has a home studio and produces mainly R&B music. (You can hear for yourself on YouTube by searching @Calvint8.)
Always happy to individualize meals based on resident preferences, Calvin says hearing the residents say “I really appreciate what you did for me today” reinforces that he has chosen the right career path for him, and that ISL and Heartis have given him a platform to excel.