Fifth Annual Top Chef of Polk County Event To Benefit Achievement Academy

LAKELAND, FL (February 4, 2019) - Achievement Academy’s fifth annual Top Chef of Polk County event will take place on Monday, February 25, 2019 at the RP Funding Center in Lakeland from 6 – 9 p.m.

Twelve local chefs will create and prepare their signature dish (tapas style) accompanied with a wine or libation that complements the flavors of the dish. All guests will have the opportunity to try each of the chef’s signature dish.

Two hundred and fifty guests will judge each chef on their creation to award the title of “Top Chef of Polk County 2019.” In addition, guests will rate each dining station to award the “Top Table Décor.” The chef who raises the most funds for Achievement Academy through their donated auction item/s and online voting will earn the “Top Philanthropic Chef” award. You can help support your favorite chef and Achievement Academy by voting online for the chef of your choice for a dollar a vote at

This year there will be a new award category called, “Chefs’ Choice Award”. Each chef will judge one another to determine which dish is the chefs’ favorite.

We are proud to announce our participating chefs for this year’s event: Chef Patrick Schaefer, Patio850, “Top Chef of Polk County 2018”

Chef Chris Worley, Terrie Lobb Catering, “Top Philanthropic Chef 2018”

Chef Wayne Haggard, Spectra/RP Funding Center, “Top Table Decor of 2018”

Chef Abigale Weech-Starkey, The Chop Shop Chef Bobby King, Lakeland BBQ Company Chef James Lazaros, La Imperial Bakery

Chef Anthony Pineda, Cuban B’s Burger Bazaar & Bake Shack

Chef Jose Vicente, Brasa Latina

Chef Steven Rojas, Nutwood

Chef Jeff Conley, Publix Aprons Cooking School

Chef William Ball, Cob & Pen

Chef Brandon Bailey, Hilton Garden Inn Lakeland

Exclusive Presenting Sponsor is Publix Super Markets Charities. Master Chef Sponsors are Artistic General Contracting, Bartow Ford, and Horne Construction. Executive Chef Sponsors are Harper Family Charitable Foundation, Inc., Hillcrest Partners, LLP., and Pallet Recycle. Sous Chef Sponsors are Alternative Gas Construction, Bank of Central Florida, Cannon Automotive Group, Embrace Home Loans, Guynn Family Produce, Interstate Batteries, Janice & Steve Jones, Keller Williams Realty Lakeland, Lanier Upshaw, MIDFLORIDA Credit Union, Senator Kelli Stargel, and Smart Title. Saute Chef sponsors are Alexander & Chandra Frederick, All Pro Used Auto Parts, AT&T Florida, Crowe LLP, Express Employment Professionals, Farm Credit of Central Florida, GEICO, Hughes Supply, John & Deborah Weber, Lakeland Electric, Lakeland Surgical & Diagnostic Center, LLP, Lock Insurance, Luke Markham and the law firm of Johnson, Pope, Bokor, Ruppel & Burns LLP., Mulling Insurance Agency, Murray Equipment Sales, Inc., Polk State College Foundation, Regal Automotive, Steve and Sandy Earley, Summit, Saddle Creek Logistics Services, and Two Men and a Truck. In-kind sponsors are Central Food Equipment, Emily Plank Photography, Sunshine Growers, and Dixie Signs.


Achievement Academy’s signature event, “Top Chef of Polk County 2019″, is sold out. We would like to thank each of our sponsors, participating chefs, and volunteers for participating in this years’ event.

The Achievement Academy serves children from birth through age five with various developmental delays and disabilities. The Achievement Academy offers two programs, each provided at no cost to the child or family. The first program is a Charter School that offers specialized instruction by certified teachers; small class sizes; individual speech, occupational and physical therapies; and assistive technologies that enable each student to reach his or her full potential at one of the Achievement Academy’s three campus locations (Lakeland, Winter Haven and Bartow). The second is a “Birth to Three Program” that provides early intervention services to infants and toddlers who are “at-risk” for developmental delays and/or have been identified with a specific delay. Professional Early Interventionists serve these children and their families. More than half of the Birth to Three Program’s budget is funded by a generous allocation from the United Way of Central Florida.