Have You Met Patricia Boardman?
An experienced and talented writer, Patrician Boardman focuses her skills in support of Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP) by maintaining a blog post for the local organization. “For several years I was the career page writer for the Arizona Republic and during this tenure I wrote several stories about C-CAP. I was impressed by how it provides a career path for motivated and bright students, with an invaluable mentoring program besides their excellent scholarship program.”
Explaining her commitment, Patricia continues, “So after writing about them over the years, I wanted to find a way to give C-CAP more exposure, and I volunteered to run a blog for them. In this blog I write about what’s going on with our local C-CAP organization. It’s done in collaboration with my husband, who helps me maintain the site. During the school year we update the blog frequently, usually 2 or 3 times a week. And then I’m also able to write about C-CAP in the monthly space allotted us in the trade magazine, Restaurateur.”
C-CAP works with public schools across the country to prepare underserved high school students for college and career opportunities in the restaurant and hospitality industry. As a national nonprofit, C-CAP oversees the largest independent scholarship program in the United States. ”We draw support from culinary experts from around the country. Our strongest aspect is that we provide a doorway to a career in the hospitality industry. For many kids, it is difficult to find their way in the system. But students in C-CAP can compete in a real cooking competition with professional chefs judging their work. Seniors in high schools are eligible for the scholarships, but juniors also benefit from the guidance and mentoring in C-CAP.”
Being involved with the culinary arts comes naturally for Patricia. “I grew up the eldest of seven children, with five brothers directly below me!” she laughs. “So I had the choice of doing dishes or cooking, and I chose the more creative task. Today I still enjoy developing my skills in the kitchen.”
Patricia also loves to travel “I’ve been everywhere up and down the Eastern Seaboard, also the West coast, and during my time of transition from Philadelphia to living in Arizona I made several cross country trips where I deliberately took lesser known roads to see what I could discover!” She grew up in a small town in Pennsylvania, lived for 12 years in Pittsburgh, and then spent another 15 years in Philadelphia. “Both cities seemed to me to be dark, cold, and DAMP, so I am one person who truly loves the heat of Arizona! It’s a thrill to live in a city where the towels dry out overnight, ha! But in addition to the weather, it’s also a beautiful state physically, just surprisingly stunning. We have pine forests and petrified forests, and an amazingly colorful landscape. “
Enthusiastic and genial, Patricia Boardman believes, “I am very fortunate to be able to volunteer with C-CAP. I’m so proud of this dynamic organization that provides assistance to students who are looking for this career path! Every school year we are helping them to find their way towards their goals. It just stuns me what we are able to accomplish!”
What are your local volunteer activities? C-CAP
Who inspired you to give back to your community? Built-in from childhood from my parents’ example
Which fundraising event is your favorite? Mystery Chef Dinner hosted by EVIT.
Favorite restaurant? We have three: POSH, the Parlor and Hana
Who do you most admire, and why My parents, first of all. Then Marie Curie and a host of contemporary physicists for research into what makes the universe, the universe.
If your life were a movie, who would you want to play your part? I'd like Helen Mirren - but the part would probably go to someone like Amy Poehler.
Do you have any pets? Only peeves.
When you move, what will your home tell its next owner about you? Not leaving this home until they carry me out.
What’s the best lesson you’ve learned through the years? Wait - things change. And try to keep your words soft and sweet, since you never know when you'll have to eat them.
What was your first job? Clerical assistant with the Internal Revenue Service. I was 16.
What is your greatest indulgence? Stealing time.
What do you consider to be your greatest achievement? Haven't reached it yet.
What is your most treasured possession? Family ties and close friends - the rest is just stuff.
What is the quality you most like in people? Humor and candor in equal measure.
Favorite books/Writers? A Wrinkle in Time, Turn Right at the Fountain, almost any travel book. Brian Greene, Calvin Trillin, Madeleine L'Engle, Ruth Reichl, and a host of mystery writers from Agatha Christie to Robert Parker to Karin Slaughter.
What is the trait you most deplore in others? Meanness - of any sort, from verbal to fiscal.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? What is "spare time?"
What would we be most surprised to know about you? I can do a ridiculously, screamingly accurate (and rather frightening) impression of the Wicked Witch.
What is the best advice you have ever received? Be quiet, Patricia. Oh, and always moisturize.
What are some challenges facing nonprofits? Expanding needs and shrinking funding sources; it is a nefarious myth that "people will step up" and donate more time and/or money.