Meet the Chefs: Cookin' with Who?

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Meet the chefs for 2013

Third Annual Cookin' with Who?


Sponsored by Elfant Wissahickon Realtors

 Food generously donated by La Prima Catering

Representing the Community

Cindy BassCouncilwoman, 8th District, Philadelphia – Vote for CINDY here!

Councilwoman Cindy BassPhiladelphia Councilwoman Cindy Bass represents the 8th Council District in Northwest Philadelphia. She has a strong background as a policy formulator and community activist, and has a deep commitment to increasing the role of women and minorities in the political arena. Prior to her election as Councilwoman, she served as a Senior Policy Advisor to Congressman Chaka Fattah, and before that was Special Assistant to then State Senator (now Congresswoman) Allyson Schwartz.

Councilwoman Bass lives in East Mt. Airy with her husband, Scott, and their young daughter, Carson. Cindy is a past president of East Mt. Airy Neighbors, and has a special place in her heart for community associations and related nonprofit organizations!

Representing East Mt. Airy Neighbors

Larry DiFranco – Associate Broker and Sales Manager, Elfant Wissahickon Realtors – Vote for LARRY here!

Larry DiFranco

Larry DiFranco, born and raised in South Philadelphia and a lifelong Philadelphian, is a 37 year resident of East Mt. Airy. In 1976, Larry and his wife, Eileen, chose Mount Airy as the community best suited to raise their family. They have four adult children, Janine, Neil, Greg and Ben, and are the proud grandparents of Markie Michaelson, and Isabella and Amelia DiFranco.

Larry has been associated with Elfant Realtors since 1983, and became a partner/owner at Elfant Wissahickon Realtors in 2007. As Associate Broker and Sales Manager, Larry helped establish Elfant Realtors as a premier Northwest Philadelphia real estate brokerage. Merging in 1993 as Elfant Wissahickon Realtors, EWR is currently the largest independent real estate brokerage in Philadelphia, maintaining offices in Northwest Philadelphia and Center City.

Larry recently returned from a visit to his ancestral homeland, Messina, Sicily, and is happy to share an Italian specialty he enjoyed as a child growing up in South Philadelphia.  Mangia!

Jocie Dye – Controller at Roofmeadow – Vote for JOCIE here!

Jocie Dye

Jocie Dye is a lifetime Mt. Airy resident and world traveler. She is known in much of Mt. Airy as co-creator of InFusion Coffee and Tea Gallery on Germantown Avenue. Her travels have taken her to various regions of Central and South America, Europe, Australia, and seven countries within SE Asia. The recipe she is cooking up for Cooking with Who? she first made in a cooking class in Thailand, and it is now one of her family's favorites. Jocie is currently the Controller at Roofmeadow, a green roof design firm based in Mt. Airy. She lives in East Mt. Airy with her husband, Jason, and their seven year old daughter, Jade.

Phil Allen -  Sports talker Phil from Mt. Airy  – Vote for PHIL here!


"Phil from Mt. Airy" AllenPhilip Allen, aka "Phil from Mt. Airy," is the host of the "Saturday Night Main Event" on 97.5FM TheFanatic. Phil has been a Mt. Airy resident for two decades. Phil also is the studio host for The Sixers, Flyers & Eagles post games shows on TheFanatic, and is the voice of Arcadia University basketball and sideline announcer for Manor College men's & women's basketball. You can also hear him as the host of "Philly SportsWrap" on 900AM WURD.

Philip is married to Dr. Valerie Allen, Director, African American Resource Center at the University of Pennsylvania. Together they live high atop Mt. Airy with their two children, Kendall and Phillip. He was featured in the documentary E-A-G-L-E-S, which followed his life as an Eagles fan for the full 2004 season, and was profiled in the book "A Sunday Pilgrimage" by Anthony L. Gargano about the football lives of the Philadelphia faithful. Philip is actively committed to the Lupus Foundation of America and Mt. Airy baseball, and is the founder of the Henry Houston Elementary School food pantry to benefit senior citizens.

Representing The Lutheran Theological Seminary

Bishop Dwayne Royster – Vote for DWAYNE here!

Dwayne Royster

Husband, Father, Son, Brother, Cousin, Friend, Activist, Change Agent, Agitator, Pastor, Prophet, Minister of the Lord are some of the terms that can be used to paint a picture of Bishop Dwayne Royster.

In 2004, Bishop Royster along with a group of believers founded Living Water United Church of Christ, located in the Oxford Circle section of Philadelphia. In addition to his pastoral responsibilities, Bishop Royster is the General Secretary of Higher Ground Christian Fellowship International. He is an at large member of the United Church of Christ Board.  He is the Executive Director of POWER : An Interfaith Movement, Pennsylvania’s largest faith based organizing movement of 40 congregations of Christian, Jewish and Muslim faith traditions working for Justice in Philadelphia and beyond. He is a former Councilman at Large for Norristown, PA. Dwayne is a graduate of the Center for Urban Theological Studies (Geneva College) and The Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia.

Dwayne is married to Suzette Royster ,and together they are the parents of two beautiful daughters; Chardinai and Joy. The Roysters reside in Norristown.

Jon Roth – Financial Consultant, FIC, @RCIP – Vote for JON here!

Jon Roth

Jon Roth is married to Margaret Roth and lives in Downingtown, Pa. He and Margaret have four children. Jon is a livelong Lutheran, and he and Margaret attend Good Shepherd in Coatesville, Pa.

Jon has worked at Thrivent Financial for the past 17 years. He helps people be wise with their money and live generously. Jon has served faculty and students of LTSP for many years. Philadelphia magazine recognized Jon as one of the top 500 wealth advisors in the region for the past four years. He is a life and qualifying member of the Million Dollar Round Table and has received quality service awards for 16 of the last 17 years.

Jon is a graduate of Carthage College and obtained his graduate degree from the University of Chicago. Thrivent is a second career for Jon. In his first career he worked in public transit in Chicago and Philadelphia developing programs to serve disabled people.

Prof. Karyn WisemanAssociate Professor of Homiletics; Director of United Methodist Studies, LTSP – Vote for KARYN here!

Prof. Karyn Wiseman

The Rev. Dr. Karyn L. Wiseman came to LTSP from Hood Theological Seminary, Salisbury, NC, where she held the position of Associate Professor of Ministerial Studies, and also directed Hood's Supervised Ministry program and was coordinator of United Methodist Studies. She is a member of the American Academy of Religion, Academy of Homiletics, Society of Biblical Literature and Association of Practical Theology. She was a member of the Pre-Tenure Faculty Colloquium of the Wabash Center for 2011-2012 and received a Wabash Writing Grant in the summer of 2012.

Prof. Wiseman was awarded a Doctor of Philosophy in Liturgical Studies with concentration in Preaching and Worship, with additional specializations/extensive work in Postmodern/Emergent Worship, Liturgy, and Worship Space and Design, from Drew University in 2006, receiving the Dean's Honor Award as the outstanding student of the class. Her dissertation topic was "Grace Space: The Creation of Worship Space for the Postmodern/Emerging Church."

She also holds a Master of Philosophy from Drew (2005), Master of Divinity (with honors) from St. Paul School of Theology, Kansas City, MO (1996) ,and Bachelor of Arts in History from Angelo State University, San Angelo, TX (1985).

Elder/Full Member of the Kansas East Conference of the United Methodist Church, 1996, Prof. Wiseman served local churches in Kansas and New Jersey as senior pastor for 15 years.

You can follow her blog on the LTSP website as well as at http://texaspreacherponderings.blogspot.comLearn more about Dr. Wiseman: see the Faculty Profile and watch extended interview clips

Representing Awbury Arboretum

Sue Wasserkrug – Owner, Zea May's Food Truck – Vote for SUE here!

Sue Wasserkrug

With a family history in the food business, a career as a public interest lawyer, and a stint as a food column writer, Sue is a fascinating chef with a love of Native American cuisine. Her food truck is her food business startup, and the brightly-colored "Zea May's" truck has been a mainstay at events throughout the Northwest and at farmers markets across Philadelphia over the past few years. Sue is a resident of Mt. Airy with a passion for food systems education. She is on the board of Weavers Way Community Programs, and has been a loyal supporter of Awbury outreach events. She is excited about helping to raise money for a good cause!

For more info about Sue and Zea May's, see this excellent article written by Flying Kite Media.

Dwayne Wharton – Director of External Affairs for The Food Trust – Vote for DWAYNE here!


Dwayne Wharton

Dwayne Wharton serves as the Director of External Affairs for The Food Trust, a non-profit organization with a mission to ensure that everyone has access to affordable, nutritious food. In this role, he is helping to increase healthy food retail in underserved areas across the country. Prior to joining The Food Trust, Dwayne was the National Deputy Director of Friends of the Children, a long-term mentoring organization serving vulnerable youth. Dwayne has also held leadership positions at Project H.O.M.E., People’s Emergency Center, and Red Cross House. He is a soccer coach with Chestnut Hill Youth Sports, and serves on the boards of the Seybert and Kynett Foundations, Bridging the Gaps Community Health Internship Program, and The Non-Profit Executive Leadership Institute of Bryn Mawr College. Dwayne hopes that volunteering as a chef will help in a small but significant way, to preserve the Arboretum and its programs so that more weddings can be held there, more children and families can learn and discover the beauties of nature, and so that this community can continue to take full advantage of this tremendous treasure.

To hear an interview with Dwayne on the Green Hour about his work with the Food Trust, click here.

Joseph Hunter – Co-Owner and Chef, Pizza Brain – Vote for JOE here!


Joe HunterJoe is co-owner and chef at "Pizza Brain", a new artisan pizzeria and the world's first Pizza Museum (holds the Guinness book of world records for most pizza-related memorabilia) located in Fishtown. Joe is what those in "the know" refer to as a "pizzaiolo" - an artisan pizza-maker. He's also well-schooled in the food business. Joe is a South Carolina transplant, but has come to call Philadelphia his home. As part of Pizza Brain's ethos, Joe and his co-owners are committed to establishing their pizza place as a community-driven business; a pizza shop with a conscience – meaning we strive to do things in a socially, ethically and environmentally responsible fashion. The Pizza Brain crew have garnered an incredible amount of press coverage since its inception, including – but certainly not limited to – Time Magazine, NPR, the UK's Guardian, CBS This Morning, USA Today, The Huffington Post and The New York Times! Joe is looking forward to working with Awbury to help raise funds – as a food business guru with a community mindset, he's happy to lend a hand to an organization extending programming around food, nutrition and entrepreneurship to all!
More info about Joe and Pizza Brain visit Pizza Brain's website at pizzabrain.org.

Support your favorite Chef!
The more votes (and finds raised) for each chef, the closer they are to being awarded the coveted Platinum Spatula!

Attend the Tasting November 7 - order tickets now 

Cookin' with Who? benefits these
Mt. Airy community non-profit institutions:

Awbury Arboretum
East Mount Airy Neighbors (EMAN)
The LutheranTheological Seminary at Philadelphia (LTSP)
Cookin' with Who? 2013 Institutions 

Download the flyer and share with your friends and neighbors!
| Order Tickets | Reserve Your Advertisement: (pdf form) (online form) |
| Meet the Chefs | Support a Chef |