Julie Elmore spices up vegan cuisine in the caf

Molly Schneider/Guilfordian

If you eat at the vegan station at Guilford College’s cafeteria, you know Guilford’s vegan chef Julie Elmore. And chances are, she knows you too.

Elmore was hired by Guilford College through Meriwether Godsey in August 2013.

Elmore was born in Charlotte, N.C., but moved to Greensboro as a child. She attended primary school in the county and completed her undergrad degree from UNCG in 1983.

Elmore acquired cooking through her parents’ artistic nature. Her mother was an artist and oil painter, while her father was an engineer.

“Must of got a little bit of artistry from the both of them,” said Elmore. “The levels of creativity I have through cooking is what drives me to cook.”

In her 30s, Elmore developed a passion for cooking. Her first culinary experience was working at a catering business with an acquaintance. Soon after, she then worked for Bert’s Seafood Grille, a local restaurant.

Elmore then found a position with Meriwether Godsey at Guilford College on a rainy afternoon. After several interviews, she knew she wanted the position.

“It seemed like the perfect job for me, and (so) it has turned out to be,” said Elmore.

Elmore works Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. She is usually found at her station behind the dessert table in the cafeteria.

On a typical day, she spends two hours preparing her dishes with several components.

She also enjoys cooking international foods.

“Our vision here at Guilford College is to provide meals from all over the world,” said Elmore.

She was driven to cook vegan food because she could flex her culinary muscles.

She also speaks highly of the students and co-workers she is surrounded by daily.

“The students are some of my best friends,” said Elmore. “I love the students. We have great conversations every day. They’re a breath of fresh air.

“I love my colleagues, too, and their relationship with me is what keeps me here.”

Director of Dining Services Snehal Deshmukh believes Elmore is very talented at what she does and comes up with various exceptional ideas to add to her dishes.

“I think she is a great asset to this operation,” said Deshmukh. “Moreover, what she brings to the table is the fact that she is so personable with students and staff.”

Elmore is a great person to converse with. Students love her because she is very outgoing and engages with them and the faculty.

“I like the fact that Julie already knows the people who go to the vegan station,” said junior Ajiah Jones. “Even if you’re not a vegan, you can still go to the vegan station and get food.”

Elmore’s colleague, A.D. Boyed, feels that after a year and a half of working together, she does an outstanding job preparing her vegan dishes.

“She really does care about what she prepares,” said Boyed.

“I like the fact that the vegan food is made by someone who puts so much compassion into their food and made by someone that you know,” said sophomore Danewrys Tejeda.

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