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Adrian Maya

Based in Mexico

Adrian Maya started his career within Welbilt as an Application Chef for the Latin American region, subsequently taking the position of Corporate Chef LATAM in 2017 and has become a product specialist for the region.

Adrian’s first contact in the kitchen was from a young age, he has more than 15 years of experience in the restaurant business and has been involved in more than 10 openings of new concepts across hotels in Spain and Latin America. Adrian is a member of L’ Académie Culinaire de France, Vatel Club, Collective of Mexican Cooks among other associations, and has the CAP 2015 Certification which is endorsed by Maîtres Cuisiner de France worldwide.

He quotes: “The kitchen has no limits, but it must always have roots” 

Signature dish:

Octopus with Polenta

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Andy Coniglio

Based in the United States of America

Andy Coniglio is a Welbilt Corporate Executive Chef managing the day-to-day operation of the test kitchen at the Welbilt Head Office in Tampa.  As well as being responsible for chef training and Research and Development he also manages some key strategic accounts giving him a strong understanding of customer needs. 

In addition to being a Certified Sous Chef from the ACF, he also achieved the ACF Tampa Chef of the Year in 2019.  Before joining Welbilt in 2016 Andy was an Executive Chef at Innisbrook Resort (Salamander Hospitality) overseeing the entire culinary direction for the resort which boasted over 60 service professionals throughout the restaurants and banqueting area. 

Andy spends his spare time working with charities such as the Bullard Family Foundation and GiGi’s Playhouse and enjoys travelling with his family.  

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Ebaldo Inzunza

Based in Chile

Ebaldo Inzunza began working in the kitchen at a young age, studying gastronomy in Chile and his passion for cooking has been his motivation. Working in hotels, restaurants and as a gastronomy teacher he finally came to Welbilt.

Ebaldo has been Corporate Chef for Welbilt Latin America since 2007, has worked in different countries to develop Welbilt projects, using Merrychef's technology for menu creation and train the chefs for the different culinary segments. Ebaldo enjoys working with Merrychef's technology and developing products with a team of chefs in the region of Latin America.

Ebaldo has a small photo studio, he enjoys photography in his free time, taking pictures of dishes, people and during his travels.

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Idanit Medina

Based in Mexico

Idanit Medina joined Welbilt in 2017 as an Application Chef in Mexico. Her main responsibilities include educating and training both existing and new customers as well as research and development for menus. Idanit runs masterclasses and supports trade shows. 

Idanit started out as a Speciality Chef with Brisas Group Hotels before becoming a co-ordinator at L’ Academie Culinaire de France Mexique where she organised fundraising gala dinners and sponsorship for Bocuse d’Or. Idanit participated in events like Millesime and Food and Wine Festival and came third in the USA Rice Competition in 2016. 

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Jack Chen

Based in China

Jack Chen is the Culinary Center Manager at Welbilt China, and is responsible for managing the Chinese culinary team and supporting product application and R&D. He works as a Kitchen Consultant and has more than 30 years of experience in managing teams of chefs. Jack has worked in the food service and equipment industry for over 10 years.
As a seasoned expert, he has been with Merrychef for a long time and maintains strong links with several global chain catering groups.

Jack’s hobbies include cooking, fishing and travelling.

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James Benger

Based in UK

James Benger joined Welbilt in 2008 and is the Development Chef for Northern Europe responsible for some key accounts and ensuring our customers have the knowledge they need to get the best results out of a Merrychef oven. He regularly runs Masterclasses at our demo kitchen in Sheffield and supports trade shows.  

Prior to Welbilt James was a Head Chef at village hotels in both Coventry and Nottingham before moving on to become Head Chef at Alveston Manor a 4 star, 113 bedroom hotel in Stratford Upon Avon. There he managed 10 chefs and the hotel banqueting, fine dining and conference facilities. 

In his spare time, James enjoys playing golf, supporting Birmingham City football team and spending time with his family. 

Signature dish:

Bread and Butter Pudding

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Jerry Feng

Based in China

Jerry Feng joined Welbilt in 2018 as an Application Chef in China, responsible for general market, culinary training and development, supporting our dealers and customers. 

Having studied Chinese Cooking, Jerry came to Welbilt from his role as Head Chef in Bo Shanghai restaurant. 

In his spare time, Jerry enjoys Taiji music. 

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Jimmy Mun

Based in Singapore

Jimmy Mun assists Welbilt customers in the development of their menus and cuisine using the technological benefits of Merrychef high speed ovens. As an APAC Application Chef, he supports one of Merrychef’s largest QSR customers in menu creation. Today, even local chain accounts reach out to Jimmy for culinary support and advice on applications. Jimmy enjoys developing products in conjunction with food manufacturer partners and helping to determine new uses for the Welbilt equipment product portfolio as part of their menu development and enhancement. He strategically combines his skills to deliver equipment solutions to leading food service and restaurant brands across APAC.

In his leisure time Jimmy enjoys watching movies and gardening.

Signature dish:

Soft Shell Chilli Crab

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Jürgen Burkart

Based in Germany

Jürgen Burkart has been with Welbilt since 2008 and is one of our Corporate Chefs in Germany responsible for training chefs, supporting customers, developing new recipes for the region and running Masterclasses. 

Previous experience includes roles as an Executive Chef at the Robinson Club working across Spain, Italy, Mexico and Sri Lanka and then later at the Dorint Hotel Augsburg. 

Outside of work Jürgen is very active enjoying diving, swimming, cycling, hiking and of course cooking for family and friends. 

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Karsten Hermann

Based in Germany

Karsten Hermann has been a Corporate Chef for Welbilt since 2010. Since 2015 he is Corporate Chef for Culinary R&D and Culinary Lead for Merrychef. He conducts trainings, keeps track of benchmark and oversees development. Karsten has held a multitude of Executive positions in hotels, restaurants and cruise ships all over the world.

Karsten is a big ice hockey fan. He not only loves to watch it, but also played the sport. He is convinced that     “Football (Soccer) is a sport for the Kindergarden!”. Moreover, he enjoys cycling, skating, sailing, swimming and going to Heavy Metal concerts with his friends.

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Kawee Phaisarnsiriwat

Based in Thailand

Kawee Phaisarnsiriwat joined us recently as the Application Chef for Merrychef in Thailand responsible for culinary training, sales and customer support in the region. 

Having studied in Accountancy and Business, Kawee then went on to do a diploma in commercial cooking and became a Sous Chef with Cookie and Boney in Melbourne.  He then moved to become both an owner and Head Chef at Yuu Yen Melbourne, before taking the role as an Application Chef with Newton Food Equipment in Bangkok. 

In his spare time Kawee enjoys photography, music and of course cooking! 

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Keith Howland

Based in UK

Keith Howland is the Development Chef for the South of England, UK. With over 17 years professional cooking experience he moved to Welbilt in 2011 and in his words, has never experienced 2 days the same! 

Keith conducts culinary demos and food development sessions with customers and enjoys having to travel to meet the needs of some of his key accounts. Previous experience includes Head Chef at Petersham Hotel Richmond and Sous Chef at the Four Seasons Hampshire. 

Hobbies revolve around music, he enjoys playing the Guitar and spending time with his family. 

Signature dish:

Beef Ribeye Wrap

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Klaus-Dieter Czernitzki

Based in Germany

Klaus-Dieter Czernitzki has been a Culinary Manager for Welbilt in Germany since 2006. This entails developing and testing cooking processes for new technologies, conducting specific customer and operations training sessions and working in close co-operation with industry partners. His qualifications include: Master Chef, Baker, Confectioner and Merchant in the hotel business. Klaus-Dieter has held Executive Chef positions all over Europe.

In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his family and practising the art of magic.

Signature dish:

Baked Alaska

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Lawrence Parks

Based in the United States of America

Lawrence Parks has been with Welbilt since early 2011 and is now approaching 30 years in the professional kitchens. Lawrence began his culinary career at the apron strings of his grandmother at a very young age and utilized these early learned skills to cook his way through high school and all three of his college degrees.    

A long-time veteran of the fine dining world of Boston; Lawrence later entered the corporate foodservice world having stints running the foodservice operation at a medium sized university, Massachusetts largest hospital system and as the Corporate Chef for New England’s largest food broker representing and ideating for over 40 major food manufacturers. Lawrence has also had stints at casual dining, Pan Asian restaurants and is an award-winning BBQ restaurant operator and competitor.  

In his off-time Lawrence enjoys learning about cultures through food, is an avid fly fisherman, likes to tinker with all things mechanical, and enjoys travelling just about anywhere, especially in his antique VW Bus.  


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Martin Kobald

Based in South Africa

Martin Kobald works as a Welbilt Consultant, assisting the Key Account and Regional Distribution Manager for Sub-Saharan Africa.

Martin is the owner of several Chef Schools in South Africa & Namibia, and trains professional chefs for the City & Guilds Certificate as well as the Diploma in Culinary Arts and Pastry. He is Vice President of Worldchefs – the World Association of Chefs Societies (WACS) – and Honorary Past President of the South African Chefs Association (SACA). Martin trains young chefs around the world as part of charity projects. Not only does he know his way around a whisk, but Martin is also dedicated to sharing his passion for the art and science of cooking through his cooking school, ChefMLK School of Cooking.

In 2011 Martin hiked up Kilimanjaro with a group of fellow chefs for charity, raising 25,000 Euro for the Bidvest Worldchefs tour against hunger.

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Mike Dai

Based in China

Mike Dai is an Application Chef for Welbilt in China, he works closely with key accounts researching and developing new menu programs. He conducts food testing and training with customers and is involved in supporting new store roll-outs and food events.  

Starting out as a Chef de Partie at the Grand Hyatt Shanghai he went on to set up Western menus as the Senior Sous Chef at Shangri-la Shanghai. Before joining Welbilt in 2010 Mike was the Chef de Cuisine at the Grand Hyatt Guangzhoou responsible for the daily operation of their 300 seat cafes. 

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Nick Bates

Based in United Arab Emirates

Nick Bates is a Demonstration Chef and actively promotes Merrychef’s appliances across the Middle East. With over 27 years of experience as R&D Chef and Commis Chef under his belt, Nick has often held international positions. His qualifications include City & Guilds 706 1 & 2 and advanced food hygiene. This makes him a very versatile and knowledgeable chef.

For his current role, the UK native is based in Dubai. Before moving to Dubai, he was a keen game hunter and enjoyed off road biking in the UK.

Signature dish:

Cheese Omelette

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Patrick Simon

Based in the United States of America

Patrick Simon oversees Merrychef Culinary and Sales for the Western Region of the United States. He supports customers, Rep groups, dealers and consultants providing product demos, menu development, oven programming as well as participating in trade shows, distributor, customer & charitable events. 

Patrick boasts over 25 years in culinary management with 10 years in foodservice and hospitality experience and in 2012 was the American Culinary Federation Chef of the Year (Las Vegas Chapter).  

Before joining Welbilt in 2019 Patrick was the Vice President of Sales and Culinary Operations for Hampton & Associates Food Brokers and before that the Vice President of Culinary & Sales for Culinary Academy of Las Vegas having worked his way up in the culinary industry to Corporate Executive Chef of Sysco Las Vegas. 

Patrick is the Chairman for the Nevada Restaurant Association Foundation Board & a Board Member of the American Culinary Federation Associate Advisory Board (Las Vegas). He enjoys dining at new restaurants, volunteering for Chefs for Kids & ProStart and is a Buffalo Bills fanatic. 

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Paul Connell

Based in UK

Paul Connell has been Senior Culinary Projects Manager for Welbilt since 2006. This entails running demonstration days in Merrychef’s showrooms or on-site with customers and looking after some of the UK’s biggest key accounts. He has held many prestigious positions as Senior Head Chef, Development Chef and Company Chef Trainer.

In his free time, Paul enjoys spending time with his family and friends. Karate, Fitness, Fishing, Hiking and the occasional Tenpin bowling competition are his favourite activities.

Signature dish:

Chocolate Fondant

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Pavel Druzhkin

Based in Russia

Pavel Druzhkin started with Welbilt in 2013 as an Application Chef in Russia and CIS.  Pavel’s role involves supporting the company at trade shows, running masterclasses, training and supporting customers with their culinary needs. 

Pavel started out as a Sous Chef at Bolshoy restaurant before becoming a Brand Chef with Trade Design. 

Hobbies vary from Taekwondo, which he can boast as having a red belt with black line, to skiing, parachuting and singing! 

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Ravinder Bisht

Based in India

Ravinder Bisht is an Application Chef for Welbilt in India responsible for conducting culinary training to our new and existing customers and channel partners. He also promotes and demonstrates Merrychef at trade shows and culinary events. 

Before joining Welbilt in 2016, with a BSc in Catering Management, Ravinder started work at the Radisson Blu Hotel and was an Executive Chef by the time he joined Freshler Food & Beverage Ltd. 

In his spare time he enjoys watching and playing cricket. 

Signature dish:

Murgh Malai Tikka

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Rich Mathis

Based in the United States of America

Rich Mathis joined Welbilt in 2015 and in his current position as a Corporate Chef Strategic Accounts he provides expertise in R&D, culinary support, menu development and reviewing existing and future kitchen designs for efficiencies.

A native of Florida Rich has been in the food service industry for nearly 30 years where he has held many Executive positions. Rich has achieved several goals since being a chef. These includes Pro Chef II Certification from The Culinary Institute of America in 2011 and Certified Executive Chef certification from The American Culinary Federation in 2012 as well as learning to sculpt ice and fruit carving. Rich was also awarded "Top Chef Tampa" in 2012.

In his free time Rich enjoys ice & vegetable carving, playing the drums, programming and beach time with the family.

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Rita Liu

Based in China

Rita Liu joined Welbilt in 2008 as an Application Chef in China and is responsible for product and culinary training for both new and existing customers. She supports trade shows as well as research and developments for bakery. 

Rita is a trained nutritionist and baker. 


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Sameer Kapoor

Based in India

Sameer Kapoor recently joined Welbilt as an Application Chef for Merrychef in India.  Sameer provides support to both our sales team and customers with culinary demonstrations, training sessions and exhibition support. 

Having graduated in Hotel Management Sameer started as a kitchen management trainee at The Grand New Delhi and worked his way up to become a Demi Chef de Partie before moving to Nestle Professional as an Advisory Chef to support product development and represent the brand at exhibitions. 

Sameer is an avid follower of English football and a dedicated fan for Liverpool F.C., he also enjoys writing poems and reading crime novels. 

Signature dish:

Tawa Macchi

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Samuele Zani

Based in Italy

Samuele Zani is a Sales Chef Manager for Welbilt in Italy. Having worked across many hotels and restaurants as a Sous Chef and Executive Chef, Samuele became a trainer for SZ Consulting in 2011. There he organized cooking classes and demo’s teaching professional chefs the basic recipes of traditional Italian cuisine using modern techniques of preparation and food presentation.

Before moving to Welbilt he had worked his way up to become a Consultant Chef supporting hotels and restaurants with their menu-restyling and food-cost calculations as well as helping them launch new services. 

Samuele is the Vice President of the Cesena Chef Association, and won a bronze medal at the Cuisine Olympic Games in Erfurt 2012. 

Signature dish:

Swordfish all'anconetana

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Saurabh Rane

Based in India

Saurabh Rane joined the Welbilt chef team in 2018 to provide customer and sales team support in India. He regularly conducts culinary demos to show how to get the most out of a Merrychef oven, supports exhibitions and provides ongoing support to our customers. 

After graduating with a degree in Hotel Management and Catering Technologies, he started as a Chef De Partie with Norwegian Cruise Lines and worked his way up to Sous Chef at GVK Mumbai Airport with responsibility for the overall culinary operations of Mumbai Airport including a focus on cost efficiency and sustainability. 

Saurabh is a member of the West India Chef Association and in his spare time enjoys bike rides and exploring new places, trying out new cuisine and meeting new people.  

Signature dish:

Sabudana Vada

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Zulkarnaini Dahlan

Based in Indonesia

The Indonesian region benefits from our Corporate Chef Zulkarnaini Dahlan who joined Welbilt in 2017 and is responsible for developing our culinary expertise but also supports our customers daily with advice and recommendations. 

Previous experience includes working his way up from Executive Chef & Head of Operations at Colonial Cuisine & Molecular where he oversaw the daily operation, menus and training to becoming an Independent Restaurant Consultant supporting new openings. 

To relax Zulkarnaini is part of a Bikers Club, taking part in many racing events and enjoys time reading.