In 2007 the El Dorado Sheriff’s Department formed a partnership with Lake Tahoe Community College to expand the college’s existing culinary arts program to the Sheriff’s Tahoe jail. Every year the inmates test their quality by entering the El Dorado County Fair in the Baking and Fiery Fair categories. Since 2007 the inmates have amassed over 70 first, second and third place ribbons. This year the inmates in the culinary arts program earned a total of 31 ribbons: 12 first place, 11 second place, and six third place ribbons.
The inmates develop not only cooking and baking skills, but pride and life skills as well, which leads to an improved chance of not returning to jail. Many of the inmates quickly find jobs, not only in restaurants, but also gain employment due to the work ethic and skills learned in the program.
Some of the inmate County Fair winners for 2013 were:
• Justin Bozarth: Third Place, Cranberry Orange Bread, Macaroons
• Joseph Genobaga: Third Place, Cinnamon Rolls, Pros & Cons Cake
• Robert Nieri: Third Place, Grandma’s Cookies, Golden Honey Granola Bar
• David Martinez: First Place, Raspberry Swirl Coffee Cake
• Agripino Meza: First Place, Fibulas Fig Preserves
• Derek Bond: First Place, Banana Nut Bread, Chocolate Cream Pie; Second Place, Spicy Cookies
• Chris Hunter: First Place, Pumpkin Bread; Second Place, Bundt Cake
• Hollee Johnson: First Place, Lemon Bread; Second Place, Cinnamon Rolls, Coffee Cake, Meringue Mushrooms; Third Place, Caramel Popcorn
• Ben Sharp: First Place, Florentine Cookies; Second Place, Zucchini Bread Pecan Bars
For further information, contact Captain Randy Peshon at 530-642-4706.