ACF Names New Executive Director


The American Culinary Federation (ACF), the leading culinary association for professional and student chefs, announced the appointment of Christopher Tanner, CEC, CCE, AAC, as its new Executive Director. In his new role, which took effect Sept. 6, 2023, Chef Tanner oversees all departments at the ACF national office, including certification and accreditation, continuing education, competitions, events, strategic partnerships and marketing and communications. He will also work with the ACF’s elected National President and Board of Directors to continue to grow and strengthen the federation.

IMG_5411“As a highly respected ACF Chef and Culinary Educator, Chef Chris Tanner brings a wealth of knowledge and unique perspectives to enhance our members experience with the ACF as well as growing membership,” said ACF National President Rene J. Marquis, CEC, CCE, CCA, AAC. “Having served as a research chef and as an educator for two decades, Chef Chris has a direct line of sight into the issues and challenges chefs are facing today and communicates effectively with all chefs and is uniquely qualified to help address those who are members and those who could be. His great history will help our industry grow the ACF to maintain the standard of professional excellence like we have for the last 94 years.”

Most recently, Chef Tanner served as the Director of Culinary Development at Rubix Foods, where he was responsible for leading the company’s culinary research and development program. Prior to that, he held executive chef positions at various restaurants across the U.S. and has served in leadership roles with Campbell Soup Company and Griffith Foods.

I am overwhelmed with emotion and deeply excited to begin this new chapter in my career,” Chef Tanner said. “We have an amazing team at the national office and I plan to focus on enabling them to do their jobs to the best of their ability to serve our membership. I also look forward to working with our board of directors on our strategic vision for the future growth and finding ways to add value to members, value to sponsors, and excitement to new members of all segments and walks of life in our industry.”

An accomplished culinary educator, Chef Tanner has served as Director of the now- closed Columbus Culinary Institute at Bradford School as well as Director of the Culinary Arts Institute of Montgomery County Community College in Pennsylvania, where he designed and facilitated the development of the building and operations. Prior to that, he was a chef-instructor at Schenectady County Community College in New York, where he earned his associate degree in occupational studies and culinary arts. He also holds a master’s degree in Gastronomy & Food Studies from Boston University, and a bachelor’s degree in business and culinary administration from SUNY Delhi.

An ACF member since 1997, Chef Tanner has participated in numerous ACF competitions, awarded more than 50 medals and spoken at numerous ACF and industry conferences. Chef Tanner’s long list of accolades includes earning the ACF Cutting Edge Award in 2021 and the ACF Presidential Medallion in 2017. His ACF certifications include Certified Executive Chef, Certified Culinary Educator, Certified Culinary Competition Judge, and Certification Mentor. He is also a Fellow of the American Academy of Chefs, the ACF’s honor society. Chef Tanner lives in Jacksonville, Florida, with his wife and two children.

Click here to learn more about the ACF’s leadership and here to read about the 2023-2025 ACF board members.