Wednesday, November 12, 2008


I’ve been blessed to meet many powerful and inspirational people from all walks of life. I’ve sat on the couch with Oprah Winfrey , spent a day on a movie set with Will Smith and chatted with Sidney Poitier on a street corner in Westwood…just to name a few. This morning I had a conversation about life, young people, dreams and food with the Renaissance woman herself, Dr. Maya Angelo.

I had gone over the radio interview with Dr. Angelou in my head. I paced my bedroom with high energy, wondering how our talk would go. What would her audience want to know about me? Well when the phone rang, the producer over at Oprah and Friends said “Are you ready?” holding my breath, I said “Lets go!” A few seconds later, I heard a low, raspy voice say “Hello, Chef Jeff.” I struggled to contain my excitement as I held a conversation with “The Mother of Hope”….the “Queen of Souls”, Dr. Maya Angelou on her radio show. The interview went much like a kitchen conversation with my grandmother. With the same eloquence she lends to her poetry and literature readings we talked about our shared love of cooking and eating along with her concern for our nation’s young people and some of their troubled paths. Her spirit filled my soul. I’ve never felt more inspired and the conversation only re-assured me that I must continue my work of making a difference in the lives of others.

The time is now! The moment has arrived. With less than one week until the finale, we must spread the word about the importance of shows like the CJP. It’s important that we work together to increase viewers this Sunday at 10:00pm on the Food Network. Its not about me, it’s truly about making sure we continue to assist young people with the tools to find their potential in life. WE MUST SEND THE RATINGS THROUGH THE ROOF!!!

If you love The Chef Jeff Project and you want to see another season of it encourage everyone you know to tune in to the finale this Sunday at 10pm. If you can’t watch it, set your DVR or TIVO to record it.



Catherine said...

I love,love,love the show.I have to be honest;I didnt think that I would when I first saw the previews. I thought it would be another sappy inspirational,advice on life, and oh yea we're cooking too,kind of show. I was wrong it has all the elements of ALL my favorite cooking show and the STRONG personal elements aren't sappy at all(except when Adam lost it at your house)He's my fav!You like myself are a shoot from the hip kinda guy.Having been where they come from your not going to let them run any "game' on you.I like that there are no eliminations.Everyone has the same chance,if you work hard and walk the straight and narrow.Giving people a chance that otherwise wouldn't have one!I can't wait to see many more seasons!!!How does someone become a part of your show? at the end of every show you mention to people to reach out to you if you know someone in need of help contact you at the foodnetwork site. I can't find where,other than the contest you have right now.
God Bless

Jennifer said...

I love CJP. Unfortunately I started watching halfway through the series and I am sorry I missed the beginning, since I was hooked the first time I saw it. I really hope Food Network brings it back for another season. I first saw you on Dinner: Impossible and was intrigued by your story and your mission, but missed the start of CJP for some reason. Good luck to you and I will email Food Network in support of the show.

ChrisRockWright said...

Jeff, you truly are an inspiration around the world!!! I've known you for many are destined to go down in the record books. You are are the Muhammid Ali of Urban Cuisine!!! The Real Deal... People, spread the word of CJP. Chris L. Wright (San Diego, Ca)

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful show. My oldest daughter and I watch it together. She relates to the young adults you have mentored and it's plain to see how far they have all come. It's just amazing to see. My heart goes out to each and every one of them. I wish them all the best life has to offer.
Oh and please don't make Adam swallow down another oyster...poor kid!
We love Kathy and her ability to take charge and help lead the group. They all have big hearts and so much courage to stand up and fight the demons they carried when they first began this journey. They have a lot to be proud of and so do you Chef.
God Bless and keep you always,

Nikki said...


I remember seeing you in an older Dinner: Impossible episode at Disneyworld. I remember hearing your story and was truly glad when I found out about CJP.

Although I don't identify with those on the show, I was truly inspired and found myself crying during the finale. I just wanted to say thank you for creating a project to spread the word about the troubles in our society today and to be proactive about it. I'm in Chicago; and there are only a handful of programs and avenues that many at-risk individuals can take advantage of. I hope your show creates a revolution to have more like it.

I also want to make sure that everyone that you helped can use that motivation to achieve their goals. Do you think there will be follow ups in the future? I think it would be a really good idea; or at least to bring them to the second season.

Marica..from Sunny Central Florida said...

I just wanted to congratulate you on your wonderful work. You teach these you people lessons that truly with help them through out their life. The importance of caring for others and the importance of family..Not only will the crew walk away with a marketable new career avenue, but they will be able to handle many of lives hurdles with a new positive outlook.

Continued success, and many the crew, yourself and your family be Blessed!!!

rick88 said...


I loved the show and am so moved by the inspiration that both you and your crew have brought to so many by the example of their desire to turn their lives around.

I was very sad to hear that Adam had not yet begun to pursue culinary school, his GED or taken the opportunity to work with your mentor in Texas. Is there any update since you did the voice over for the finale? I know that ultimately, he has to own the decision to change his life. But, is there any way that we, who have come to see the potential that you saw in him, can help to encourage him? It would be extremely sad to see him let all of these opportunities go.

Thanks again for what you do, and let us know how we can make sure Food Network continues to support your Project.


sdriven said...

My son and I have watched every episode of the Chef Jeff Project. The season finale did not disappoint but left us hungry for more.

I pray that the show will be picked up for next season.

Thanks Chef Jeff for sharing and extending the blessings you have been given to others.

Grace and Peace

Lynn Gold said...

I was hooked on CJP and hope there'll be more seasons of it. I was sorry to hear about Adam not pursuing that job and not getting his GED. It's so sad when someone has so much potential and doesn't use it.

On the other hand, hearing that Alonzo, Maria, Shante, and Brett had all started school made me all warm and fuzzy.

It'll be anyone's guess whether Kat uses her scholarship, but it looks like you helped her turn her life around big-time. Kudos!

Responsible Artist said...

This is a great show and I am watching the finale, rooting for each and every young chef. Good luck, all!

Chef Jeff, you are a wonderful teacher. You have taught me a lot about how to be a teacher.

Aspen said...

You, your show and your drive to help these young people is inspiring. After watching last nights finale, I was asking myself...what could I do to help? I hope to find a way to give back. If you could make a post about how everyday people can help or get involved that be great.

Thanks for taking us this journey with the CJP, hope to see more in the future.

God bless