Published on February 15, 2023
Celebrated for her butchery skills and simple approach to food you will recognize Connie DeSousa from her appearances on Top Chef Canada, Top Chef All Stars and most recently a judge for Food Networks Fire Masters. She is one of Canada’s most celebrated female chefs with both an empathetic, yet fierce, approach to her work, life and fitness. Connie is driven to succeed. Once she sets her sight on a goal, she accomplishes it.
An avid runner, Connie recently completed the NYC marathon and achieved her personal best as she sprinted across the finish line. Connie’s ambition stemmed from her humble roots, growing up in Erin Woods community in SE Calgary with her Irish mother and Portuguese father who worked hard to achieve success. Cooking was infused into a young Connie as was her love for sausage making and large family get-togethers where food was what brought them around the table.
Graduating from the top of her culinary class, she met her mentor, John Jackson, and instantly she knew they had a partnership for life. Connie has challenged herself to compete in many culinary competitions around the world, including the prestigious Chaîne De Rotîsseurs in South Africa, placing 4th in the world, and participated in the World Culinary Olympics in Germany. Working internationally, staging at well- known restaurants around the world, mastering nose-to-tail butchery, cultivating relationships with farmers and artisan producers, and challenging the social norms of women in the professional kitchen Connie has dedicated countless hours to her craft.
Now, a mother, co-owner of several successful restaurants and businesses, mentor to young chefs and women in the industry, as well as a fitness advocate, and community ambassador, Connie’s success relies on finding absolute balance. In every challenge Connie approaches she desires to fit more minutes in every day, but still manages to defy time and space.