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Culinary expert named executive chef at SDCC


Landing the top position as executive chef of Centerplate at the San Diego Convention Center (SDCC) is Daryl O’Donnell, who is passionate about creating extraordinary food and beverage experiences.

“Chef Daryl’s culinary expertise is immense, and his training has been top-notch. We look forward to continuing to share Centerplate’s exceptional food and beverage services with our clients through his leadership,” said Carol Wallace, president and CEO, San Diego Convention Center Corp.

As executive chef, O’Donnell will lead a team of 135 full- and part-time employees at Centerplate, SDCC’s exclusive caterer. Bringing 22 years of culinary experience to the table, he has worked at Centerplate for 14 years and received a formal education through San Diego Mesa College’s culinary arts program. Through his years of serving on the front lines of many large-scale, high-profile events, he acquired a hands-on knowledge of SDCC’s food and beverage program.

“We are pleased to promote Daryl O’Donnell,” said Nancy Murgillo, general manager, Centerplate. “Being mentored under former executive chef Jeff Leidy, Daryl comes with an intimate skill set and knowledge of our business niche in high-volume, high-quality food preparation, planning and executing extraordinary events.”

Through the efforts and support of O’Donnell and the entire Centerplate team, SDCC was awarded “Best Food and Beverage” by the Professional Convention Management Association’s (PCMA) Convene magazine in 2012 for its reputation as an industry leader.

San Diego Convention Center Corp. is a public benefit corporation created by the City of San Diego to exclusively manage and operate the 2.6 million square-feet SDCC.

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