Our Instructors

Our accomplished instructors boast backgrounds as diverse as our student population. They bring their vast culinary training and experience as executive chefs, pastry chefs, caterers, private chefs, food writers, bakery owners, and educational leaders to every course they teach. Our instructors have worked in some of the finest restaurants and institutions in the greater Boston area and across the world, and are passionate about sharing their knowledge with future culinary leaders like you.


Julie Burba
Director of Education
Chef Julie Burba worked for a decade in public relations before attending the CSCA Professional Chef’s Program in 2002. Following her graduation, Chef Julie worked at Formaggio Kitchen as the Sous Chef/Catering Manager, at Tomasso Trattoria as a Rounds Cook, and at Kitchenpixie Catering. She began working at CSCA full time as the Manager of Communications in 2003, maintaining part-time kitchen work on weekends and nights. Chef Julie advanced with CSCA to Director of Communications and Marketing in 2009 before taking a position as Assistant Director of Education in 2013. She has been the Director of Education since 2015, leading our academic team of lab and seminar instructors.

“CSCA is home and all of the adjectives one can ascribe to ‘home’ from the cooking smells, to community, to love, to the rush and pleasure of cooking and eating and pleasing people.”

-Chef Julie


Simone Montali
Assistant Director of Education and Chef Instructor
Chef Simone Montali worked in his hometown of Florence, Italy at a bakery and then in high-end catering for four years before jetting off to attend CSCA. Chef Simone achieved Valedictorian status of both the Professional Chef’s Program in 2012 and the Professional Pastry Program in 2013. He then went on to work with Acardi Foods, one of the largest Italian and specialty food distributors in New England, and as the Pastry Chef at Bistro 5. In 2014, Chef Simone started teaching in the CSCA Recreational Program. In 2016, he joined the administrative team as Academic Supervisor. Chef Simone teaches Baking, Italian, and Pastry Arts in the Professional Programs, and continues to teach Recreational Programs.

“I have always loved the more intellectual element of food, and I find that the pastry arts are very satisfactory in this respect. At first glance, you start with a complicated set of rules, but once you develop a deeper understanding, you can enhance and perfect your craft with exquisite treats that both follow and break traditional guidelines.” 

-Chef Simone


Elise Bayard Franklin
Chef Instructor
Chef Elise Bayard Franklin attended Chef Delphin’s Gourmandise School of Pastry in 2005, before applying to CSCA. She graduated from the Professional Chef’s Program in 2006 and the Professional Pastry Program in 2007 and began assisting in the Professional Programs and teaching Recreational Classes at CSCA while pursuing other pastry ventures. Chef Elise worked as a Pastry Chef at Buttercream Baking Company in Newburyport and as Head Baker at Susu Bakery Boutique in Wellesley. Chef Elise has been teaching Baking, Provincial and Intensive French, American cuisine, and Pastry Arts in the Professional Programs since 2010. She also continues to teach Recreational Programs.

“I always wanted to be a teacher. Originally, I thought I would be a biology teacher, but being a culinary instructor is even better – it combines science & artistry and you get to eat the end results! It is great to teach people the ‘rules’ and then show them how much flexibility there is within the pastry kitchen and how to break those ‘rules’.”

-Chef Elise


Christopher Diamond
Chef Instructor
Chef Christopher Diamond began his educational journey with a BA in Biology at Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania.  He then went on to graduate from The Culinary Institute of America in 1986.  In 1992, Chef Diamond went on to receive a Certificate from School for American Chefs with Madeleine Kamman at Beringer Vineyards in Napa Valley, CA.  Chef Diamond has held many positions within in the culinary world in Boston, New York, Paris and California, including Executive Chef titles at Reebok World Headquarters and MIT with Sodexo, and at Berklee College of Music with Aramark.  Chef Diamond was the Bronze Medal Award Winner at the ACF Competition in 2004 and received Sodexo Regional Chef of the Year in 2003.  After working as a Chef Instructor at Newbury College through 2018, Chef Diamond joined CSCA in early 2019 and teaches in both the Professional and Recreational Programs.

“I am passionate about teaching, sharing my knowledge of and love for the culinary arts. The importance of learning the basics of culinary techniques cannot be over-emphasized.  It gives me great satisfaction to aid in launching new culinarians into our ever-expanding field. Growing up in North Cambridge just blocks away from the school, my enthusiasm for preparing good food began in my mother’s kitchen and continues to this day.”

– Chef Chris

Chef Mark Farone

Mark Farone
Chef Instructor
Chef Mark Farone started his culinary career at age 13 as a line cook at a small family restaurant in South Florida. He continued to work in restaurants while completing a master’s in education at the University of Florida, before launching a 20-year career in technology that he left in 2009 to pursue his culinary passion. Chef Mark graduated from the CSCA Professional Chef’s Program in 2010 and worked at gastropubs and local pop-up restaurants in Boston and Cape Cod, before returning to CSCA. Today he teaches Basics, Provincial French, Intensive French, and the Savory Component of the Professional Pastry Program. He also continues to teach Recreational Programs.

“This is an industry that demands collaboration. I am so proud to work at  a school that fosters a collaborative community. CSCA gives you a family and over 45 years’ worth of professional alumni across the globe who are here to help materialize your dreams.”

-Chef Mark


Anthony Haley
Chef Instructor
Chef Anthony Haley is a Boston native who obtained his Associates degree in Culinary Arts from Johnson and Wales University – Providence in 2008.  He went on to earn his Bachelors in Culinary Nutrition in 2010.  After working in Research and Development for Heinz North America in Pittsburgh, PA, Anthony returned home to Boston.  He spent many years working for Legal Seafoods, primarily training and opening new locations.  In 2015, Chef Anthony opened Antonio’s Bacaro,  a venetian wine bar and restaurant in Hyde Park, where he was the Executive Chef. Anthony competed on the hit show “Blind Kitchen” in 2022 and has appeared on CBS Boston for several cooking segments. Chef Anthony spends his free time training mixed martial arts, including Muay Thai and Brazilian jiu jitsu…and now teaching Professional and Recreational Classes at CSCA!

“I am extremely passionate about everything culinary and am so excited to spread my knowledge and learn what I can”

– Chef Anthony

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Ploy Khunisorn
Chef Instructor

Chef Ploy is a native of Thailand. She went to Suan Dusit International Culinary School while she was working as a financial analyst in Bangkok. She came to the USA to earn a Master of Liberal Arts in Sustainability at Harvard University and a Master of Education at Cambridge College. She started teaching cooking classes in 2014. Having traveled to over 30 countries, she has learned to cook varieties of cuisine around the world. In her 9+ years of teaching experience, Ploy has taught over 6,000 students to cook and bake Asian, plant-based, gluten-free food and pastries. She received a Certificate in Plant-Based Patisserie from Le Cordon Bleu. She is also a graduate student in the Master of Gastronomy program at Boston University. Chef Ploy joined CSCA in 2023 and teaches in both the Recreational and Professional Programs.

“I believe in empowering my students to enhance their cooking skills and to explore different cultures through cooking classes from world cuisines.”

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Meg Newcomb
Chef Instructor
After graduating from Bentley University with a degree in finance, Chef Meg Newcomb moved to Chicago and attended the French Pastry School to study classic French pastry in their L’Art de la Pâtisserie program. After working with chefs Gina and Bob Hartwig at Lovely Bakeshop, Chef Meg returned home to Boston in 2010.  Upon her return, she began working as a baker at Crema Cafe in Harvard Square and quickly progressed to Pastry Chef and Executive Chef. In addition to over a decade of cafe management, her industry experience includes custom wedding cakes, event catering, and food trucks.  She also competed on The Food Network’s Cupcake Wars in 2013.  She joined CSCA in 2019 and teaches in both the professional and recreational programs.

“For me, baking is the ultimate way to share joy with other people. Some of my fondest early memories are of baking with my mom and watching her decorate birthday cakes.  I often find that people are intimidated by pastry techniques, and it is my personal goal to demystify the process so we can all share a little more joy with the people we love. Baking should be magical, not scary!”

-Chef Meg


Steve Nill
Chef Instructor
Harvard MBA graduate Steve Nill retired from a successful 30-year financial career to pursue his culinary passion. Chef Steve began working at Rialto as an intern while attending CSCA, and upon graduating from the Professional Chef’s Program in 2007, worked his way up to Rounds Cook, a position he held until the restaurant closed in 2016. He began teaching in the Recreational Program in 2008, and helped develop several regional series curricula for our Recreational Programs. Chef Steve began teaching in the Professional Program in 2011, and now teaches Basics, Italian, and American cuisines. He also continues to teach Recreational Programs.

“From experience, I know that with just a little time in the classroom, I can help kindle, or re-kindle, an excitement for food and cooking that changes people’s lives and that of their family and friends all around. We will eat three meals a day for the rest of our lives; why not eat something that tastes great?”

-Chef Steve

Chef Marie

Marie Perfetti
Chef Instructor
Chef Marie Perfetti graduated from the CSCA Professional Chef’s Program in 2005 with high honors. She began assisting at the CSCA in 2006 and began teaching Recreational classes the next year. Chef Marie ran a small catering business and led instructional demonstrations for Williams & Sonoma as well. She teaches Baking in the Professional Chef’s Program and continues to teach Recreational Programs.

“I chose to attend CSCA because it was a small school with an intense curriculum. I started teaching here because I enjoyed my time at school so much I didn’t want to leave. I like it here because it’s a supportive, passionate, and curious community. You really feel like you’re part of a family here.”

-Chef Marie


Jan Schiff
Chef Instructor

We extend our heartfelt congratulations to Chef Jan on her well-deserved retirement. The entire CSCA community is filled with immense gratitude for the invaluable contributions you have made to CSCA as a whole, as well as the countless students whose lives you have profoundly impacted. Your dedication and passion have enriched their lives in ways that cannot be adequately expressed. Thank you for simply being yourself! We will miss you.