Director of Culinary Operations & Education (Full-Time, On-Site/Hybrid)


Carnation Farms (CF), an 800+ acre farm in picturesque Carnation, WA, is a community-based hub for regenerative food & agriculture that educates and empowers the work of culinary, food, and farm professionals. We aspire to help create a thriving regional food system connecting farmers & culinary professionals around shared values of regenerative food, positive health, and food equity.

The leadership has recently embarked on an evolution of its 100-plus year role, purpose, and mission in the broader Pacific Northwest farm and food communities – to focus on building healthy regenerative food systems as our purpose and to build and model regenerative practices throughout our farming and culinary activities.

Decades of factory farming, monocultural farming, and industrialization have led to a badly managed and damaged food system in our country. It’s our belief that such practices hollow out rural economies and squander our water and soil. In the face of climate change, regenerative practices are more and more vital. Transforming our food system is some of the most important work of our time.

All of us at Carnation Farms feel a sense of urgency to make the biggest possible contribution we can to avert a negative future and help create positive changes in our food system. CF operates a certified organic farm, including a 10-acre vegetable farm and 150 acres used for our livestock program. Now, the organization is embarking on furthering our current work to engage more completely in regenerative practices that build soil health, protect watersheds, and make food and farm assets open and available to a broader, diverse community.

The Director of Culinary Operations & Education will work hand in hand with the Executive Director, Director of Regenerative Agriculture, Farmstand Manager, and the independent contractor(s) who oversee and coordinate our events, retreats, and weddings to design a variety of culinary and educational experiences for CF’s students and practitioners, event clients and visiting guests, along with culinary events that speak to a broad audience in the Greater Seattle area.

About The Position:

The Director of Culinary Operations & Education is a visionary position, and we are looking for someone who is an aspiring or experienced chef and has an interest in creating educational events for culinary professionals (primarily) and consumers. Through menu design, strong relationships with regional producers, and a deep passion for the power of food to change people’s lives, this leader will shape a vision for CF’s role in promoting healthier, regenerative food.

This person is also responsible for building out a new, emerging educational program, partnering with our Ag team, designed to create greater connections between farmers, producers, and chefs. This person will also oversee partnerships with regional culinary institutions and chefs to help expand professional opportunities in the industry, particularly for students from marginalized communities and populations. On the culinary side, this person ensures that the highest standards are met for all food prepared and served at Carnation Farms, including utilizing seasonal growing, reducing food waste, and promoting regional food producers. This person will also be responsible for ensuring that our events, wedding, and retreats source directly from CF, including our livestock and crops, as much as possible and also incorporates local producers and products.

In the first six months, we expect this person to refine and implement previously planned events (in both areas of culinary operations and education) and test/pilot new strategies. Within the first 12 months, this person will develop the strategy and plan to build out a regular calendar of events that highlight CF’s organic and regenerative practices including farm dinners, culinary education programs, and consumer-focused events. By the end of 18 months, we expect this person will also have developed a strategy for a CF-branded product line, created a budget for the Culinary & Education Programs, and created a sustainability operations guide for all events on the Farm.

Specific responsibilities – culinary (60% of time; priorities will vary, may shift)

• Contribute strategic thinking, best practices, and innovative solutions to increase the effectiveness of events and the Farms’ programming as a whole.
• Work with the independent contractor(s) who oversee and coordinate our events, weddings, and retreats and, in partnership with them, plan the menus for between 15-20 events annually for the Farm, including farm dinners, weddings, and special events.
• Supervise and coordinate all aspects of food production of a medium-to-large-scale food preparation operation, including daily production of all foods, assisting with staffing requirements, and ensuring that all events adhere to the budget.
• Serve as a point of contact with culinary schools and partners across region.
• Interview, hire, train, supervise and mentor food production management and hourly staff.
• Oversee maintenance of food facilities to ensure quality, sanitation, and safety standards compliance.
• Manage a team of 1.5 FTE (initially) and build a trusted pool of interns and volunteers to staff Farm events.
• Maintain a robust knowledge of industry, trends, and issues so culinary events remain innovative and on trend.
• Contribute to strategic planning and build out of CF’s farmstand offerings and partnerships.
• Serve as a chef for special functions as needed.
• Ability to manage event flow, adhere to operational procedures and budgets, and deliver an exceptional guest experience.

Specific responsibilities – education (40% of time; priorities will vary, may shift)

• In cooperation with the Executive Director and Director of Regenerative Agriculture, develop and book a diverse range of industry talent for unique consumer- and culinary-facing programming that includes: farm to table dinners, talks, classes, and demonstrations.
• Design educational programs for industry professionals, including partnering with issue area experts.
• Manage the programming calendar and track events throughout their lifecycle from inception to completion.
• Designing educational programs such as retreats, webinars, and hands-on culinary education for both consumers and emerging culinary professionals.
• Developing entrepreneurial opportunities for students and chefs utilizing the Carnation Farms food production facilities and farm stand.
• Serve as a public spokesperson for the CF programs and initiatives at industry and community events.

The Ideal Candidate has:

• Minimum of 6 years of experience working in special events, hospitality, or project management as a sous chef /chef de cuisine.
• Knowledge and experience working with special events and/or institutions such as hotels, retreats, and culinary conferences.
• Project and program development/management skills and experience, including an excellent ability to multitask, prioritize duties, and work efficiently and independently in a fast-paced environment.
• Experience creating and executing educational programs with various audiences and/or age groups with metrics for success.
• Knowledge and relationships with the greater chef community, especially locally in the greater Seattle area.
• Demonstrable ability to build and maintain partnerships with others such as chefs, restaurants, suppliers, vendors, farms, and more.
• A college education or degree related to culinary, program management, education, or event management (additional experience could substitute for a degree)
• A minimum of 2 years of people management experience inclusive of staffing planning, hiring, planning, performance management, training, and motivating and inspiring staff for success.
• High energy and passion for Carnation Farms’ mission.
• Deep commitment to local sourcing, whole animal utilization and farm-to-table principles.
• Strong organizational, communication, and interpersonal skills.
• Ability and propensity to work with people from different cultures and backgrounds and to design culinary experiences that reflect the diversity in our communities.
• Flexible and adaptable work style.
• Deep customer-service orientation with attention to detail
• A team player with strong leadership skills and strong emotional intelligence.
• Experience in a nonprofit environment is a nice-to-have
• Tech proficient in MS Office including Word, PowerPoint, Excel and Adobe Acrobat Pro.

Carnation Farms is an Equal Opportunity Employer:

Carnation Farms does not discriminate or determine employment on the basis of race, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, or any other factor; employment decisions are made only on the basis of qualifications, merit, and business needs. We believe diversity creates resilience and strength and believe a diverse workplace is crucial to the success of our organization and our efforts to support organic farmers. We strive to create a safe, supportive office culture and workplace that encourages racial and social equity and such, we have a zero-tolerance policy for discrimination of any kind. We encourage all qualified applicants to apply no matter their race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, veteran or disability status.

Our employee benefits are robust and include:

• Salary Range DOE: $85,000 – 95,000 annually.

• Subsidized medical (one plan option is completely free to you), vision, and dental for you and your family

• Short- and long-term disability insurance

• $50,000 in free life insurance with options for supplemental, spouse, and child life

• Immediate vesting in company match 401k on first day of hire

To apply: Please email a cover letter and resume to