Alumni Spotlight Archive
Chef Tom Moskos
Good education leads to ‘good eating’ cookbook for Triton Hospitality graduate
Cooking for the corporate world had its benefits for Chef Tom Moskos. As a rising chef for Starwood Hotels and Resorts, Moskos of Glen Ellyn has cooked for the likes of former U.S. President and Vice President George Bush, Sr. and Al Gore, as well as Hulk Hogan and other wrestlers who participated in Wrestlemania 22 in Rosemont in 2010. He was even a featured chef on an episode of WE TV’s Platinum Weddings in 2010.
He lived a star-studded career. But the 1985 Triton College Hospitality graduate recently decided to take a break from catering to a crowd to simply cooking for a few with his new cookbook, titled The Art of Good Eating, available on Amazon.com.
The cookbook is a collection of recipes, stories, tips and tricks written to entertain any home cook who is preparing to entertain family and friends. "The book is about selecting, preparing and enjoying the best ingredients available in a relaxing social atmosphere," Moskos said. "When we cook meals at home, it brings family together. It is about ‘the art of good eating,’ not the process to feed our families."
Moskos’ experience includes a three-year culinary apprenticeship with Westin Hotels following his graduation from Triton. From there, he worked his way up the ladder – from middle level cook to banquet sous chef to banquet chef. He then transferred hotels and began work as the executive sous chef for Sheraton Chicago Hotel and Towers, before becoming executive chef in 2003 for Starwood Hotels and Resorts, which manages both Westin and Sheraton hotels. He’s also given back to high school students in his community with his craft.
What have been some obstacles you've had to overcome in pursuit of your education and career goals?
In the culinary field, there are many days that you have to work more than eight hours. Sometimes your shift starts at 3 a.m. or 3 p.m. I have made many sacrifices working holidays, weekends and evenings. While other people were off work and out having a good time, I would be working. It is this dedication that progressed my career.
What have been some sources of inspiration both in your career and in your life?
My family has inspired me – especially my parents who raised me with a work ethic that helped me to succeed. I continue to work hard to provide for my children and home.
What would you describe as your strong suit?
I am a very calm person. I can stay calm during intense situations. I have learned to understand myself and who I am and deal with my personal weaknesses and make them strengths.
How has Triton College impacted your life?
Triton was a springboard to my career. It gave me an opportunity to explore different paths and ultimately find my passion in cooking.
What advice would you give someone who would like to pursue a career in your field?
Be prepared to work hard and make sacrifices.
What are your words of wisdom for current Triton students?
Find your passion and follow it. Don't give up when times are tough. Do it for yourself and not someone else.
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