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1977-79. My final year of college and two years thereafter I ran the back stage catering for the leading rock and roll producer in the Midwest.
1980-89. I then had my own catering and special events business, specializing in the art world. I worked for the Nelson-Adkins Museum and many galleries.
1989-92. I opened my own restaurant in 1989, Café Lulu with a world food menu. I was chef/owner. Live jazz. It had the feel of a supper club. Great fun. Closed in 1992..
1992-Present. I have served as a consultant for bars and restaurants in the Kansas City area, creating wine lists and menus.
2004-2012 I worked as a private chef on an island off the coast of Maine. Very high end. This included menu planning, sourcing, and wine buyer.
After Café Lulu closed in 1992, I started writing a column for the KANSAS CITY STAR about food and wine, entitled The Marriage of Food and Wine. I continued to write about food and wine for them for five years, and still write food and wine articles for life style magazines, including a stint as the restaurant reviewer for KANSAS CITY magazine.
In 1996, St. Martin’s press published my first culinary mystery. They published seven books in the Heaven Lee series from 1996-2002.
In Oct. 2004, my first cookbook was released by Stewart,Tabori & Chang. It is titled THE BIG PLATTER COOKBOOK, co-authored by A. Cort Sinnes.
In May 2005, Berkley Press released the first book in a new mystery series. It is titled THE SPICE BOX. The second book in the series, DEATH DU JOUR, was released in 2006, in paperback in 2007.
I have worked in all areas of film production, specifically 20 years experience as a script supervisor and assistant director, mostly on commercial shoots. I have done hundreds of spots for Wal-Mart, Sonic Drive-Ins, Applebee’s, AT&T, etc.
I also worked script on a long form Ozzy Osbourne special for HBO, finished up script on the movie, “Kansas” with Matt Dillon, and worked script and assistant director on the Christian video series “Bibleman” with Willie Ames.
I have written and directed several training/in house films for Houlihan’s, H&R Block, and Hallmark.
I served on the Kansas City Film Commission board from 2000-2003.
In 2008 and 2009 I made short food films that were included in the New York Food Film Festival.
1994-2008 I was a permanent guest on Public Radio’s KCUR Walt Bodine Show twice monthly as one of the food critics. (Kansas City)
I also served as a founding member (Art Mom) of the Late Night Theater, an experimental theater in Kansas City and board member of The Writer’s Place. I was a board member of the Coterie Theater, one of the country’s leading children and young adult theaters. I am still a member of their Advisory Board.
1975-85. I have owned and managed four boutiques over the years that specialized in vintage clothing and other fashion items, as well as an antique quilt store. I went to market in New York for these stores, did the buying and worked the floor.
2004. For Ball’s Foods, a Kansas City grocery store chain, I worked as celebrity chef representing a farm cooperative of 90 farms. I created recipes for their products and marketed the value of buying from local farms. I also started a wine tasting program for the stores.
1985-2005. I worked as retail and marketing consultant for Crown Center Redevelopment, a subsidiary of Hallmark Cards. This involved creating and managing special events, sourcing retail outlets and consulting for food ideas.
1977. Graduated from University of Missouri with a double major in Communications and Administration of Justice.