Head Chef Keith Jones departs after 20 years at the school

Head Chef Keith Jones departs after 20 years at the school

Every Friday, students eagerly await a What’s Happening email from Head Chef Keith Jones detailing the lunch menu for the coming week. But whether the beloved mac and cheese or the less popular cod nuggets are on the menu, students and faculty alike said that their love and admiration for Chef Jones remains steadfast. Due to a health issue that has affected him since March of 2023, Chef Jones announced his retirement on October 2, after 20 years at the school.

As Head Chef, Chef Jones was responsible for all of the school’s food services across four campuses.

“Working in a multi-campus institution is challenging for the kitchen because they have to provide food, support to each campus every day and try to meet the demands of students and teachers at each school,” he said. “The school is a relatively large institution that has a great deal of extra events, so the kitchen department is sometimes needed all week into weekends,” Chef Jones said.

His job required coordination and organization, Chef Jones said.

Before arriving at the school in 2003, Chef Jones worked at The Dana Hall School for six years alongside several catering jobs, which provided him useful experience in running dining services on a large scale, he said.

Over his time working at the school, he found it most rewarding to see students develop from one year to the next. He built close relationships with his students, he said.

“Watching students come in as freshmen and then seeing them grow and mature to be incredibly talented graduates as seniors was a highlight,” he said.

In his spare time, Chef Jones enjoys writing poetry and short stories stemming from his personal experiences, he said.

“My poetry is inspired by and acts as an illustration of things that have happened around me,” Chef Jones said.

Rahdin Salehian ’23 had a close bond with Chef Jones, he said.

“Chef Jones was always such a kind and caring part of our community during my time at the Upper School. I always enjoyed his positive presence during lunch and

at school in general.”
Radhin is very grateful to Chef

Jones, he said.
“Lunch was overall a special part

of my BB&N experience, and the work Chef Jones put in was one of the biggest reasons why.”

Rahdin worked with Chef Jones in the Upper School on various occasions, once serving lunch to other students with Chef Jones and the kitchen staff (see Volume 50, Issue 8 “Rahdin serves it hot”).

“My experiences working with him ranged from inquiries on behalf of the Student Council to serving food with him behind the counter,” he said. “In Volume 50, I wrote a diary entry of my experience working with Chef Jones and the kitchen staff serving baked ziti. This would not have been able to happen without Chef Jones’s openness to having me work back there with him.”

Chef Jones’s warmth and friendly attitude made the school feel more united, Rahdin said.

“I appreciate everything Chef Jones did to make the community a more positive and interesting place.”

In addition to bonding with students, Chef Jones became close friends with the rest of the kitchen staff. Chef Alex Medina in particular has fond memories of his time with Chef Jones.

“Just sharing one or two memories, it’s not enough, I could write a book about all the things and times we spent together,” Chef Medina said.

Chef Medina said he admired how Chef Jones would put out special menus during the holidays.

“Chef Jones would go out of his way to make sure everyone would enjoy that time of the year. I remember when we used to cook turkey dinners for the whole school, on Thanksgiving. He would cook homemade apple pies and all kinds of desserts for everyone. That made me appreciate him more and see how humble and pure of heart he reallyis.”

Chef Jones was thoughtful in answering various student and faculty questions, Chef Medina said.

“He took time to answer all kinds of emails from the students about lunch,” he said.

Chef Jones’s hard work and dedication reached beyond the community, Chef Medina said.

“He would always go the extra mile not just for his staff, but for anybody that knew him.”

Abby Brown ’26 is sad to see Chef Jones depart.

“Even though Chef Jones no longer works at the school, his contributions and the positive impact he had on our community will be long-lasting.”

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