Saturday, May 12, 2012

Delilah Moves On . . .To Education

Cover from Delilah Winder's cookbook
Delilah Winder may be without restaurants as a result of bankrtupcy proceedings, but she's not without a job. Starting May 1 she signed up with the Philly Food Ventures business incubator program of the new Center for Culinary Enterprises (CCE).

In her new role, Winder will work closely with entrepreneurs in a one-on-one coaching setting to provide guidance and capacity building resources. As part of that, she'll assist entrepreneurs in navigating the processes for obtaining necessary licenses, certifications, and insurance, connect entrepreneurs with other resources at the CCE's parent organization, The Enterprise Center, and with outside resources such as small business development centers, micro-lenders, and consultants. She'll bring her years of experience in the food business to help budding food business owners with sourcing, sales venues, and contract opportunities, coordinate group workshops on topics relevant to culinary entrepreneurs and generate ideas for additional services that could be provided to benefit culinary entrepreneurs and help them build capacity for their businesses.

Winder's got the experience which makes her a natural fit to help wannabe food entrepreneurs. Before embarking on her long and mostly successful track record operating restaurants and food retail outposts, she was a business analyst. She started out in the food business by opening her stall in the mid-1980s at the Reading Terminal Market.

The CCE, whose building is nearing completion within a former supermarket on S. 48th Street between Spruce and Pine, includes three shared-use, commercial kitchens for rent to culinary entrepreneurs, an eKitchen Multimedia Learning Center featuring a demonstration kitchen, "smart" classroom and television studio, and retail spaces. The facility and its programs are expected to open in late summer.

The CCE's programs encompass a wide range of possible businesses within the food industry: eateries, catering services, baking, canning, and candy-making ventures, and retailers such as groceries.

The CCE is part of The Enterprise Center and its Community Development Corporation. The Enterprise Center was founded in 1989 and provides a range of services for small businesses in Philadelphia and across the Commonwealth, with a focus on challenged and minority-owned business enterprises. In addition The Enterprise Center operates youth entrepreneurship and leadership programs. TEC-CDC was founded in 2001 as an affiliate organization of The Enterprise Center, responsible for extending The Enterprise Center’s mission through economic development projects and community-based programming in West Philadelphia.

Paul Steinke, general manager of the Reading Terminal Market and a member of the CCE's advisory board along with a few dozen other local food luminaries (among them, White Dog Cafe founder Judy Wicks, Ann Karlen of Fair Food, Daniel Stern, Michael Solomonov, Michael Chow executive chef of Sang Kee Noodle House) said he'll be seeking a new tenant of Delilah's now vacant stall at the market when legalities with the bankruptcy trustee are settled.

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