International - new 'Red Ribbons'
Presenting new members of the Conseils
New members of the Conseil d'Administration and the Conseil Magistral

[July 2018] At this year’s International Annual General Meeting in Paris, new members of the Conseil d’Administration and the Conseil Magistral were announced by President Yam Atallah.

Three new members were appointed to the Conseil d’Administration (the International Board)

Allen Wong, Bailli Délégué of China
Allen went to school in Hong Kong. Higher education studies followed in Canada leading to an MBA. A Canadian by nationality, his hobbies and interests are gourmet food and cooking, movies, music, computer hardware and new technologies that affect our life. Allen’s professional career started by trading foreign exchange in Hong Kong then he moved into general business management both in Hong Kong and in Canada. He is currently Managing Director of Shanghai Mister Clean Environmental Services and since 2013 he is also Managing Director of Nanopac International Limited of Hong Kong.

Ira Falk, Chancelier of USA
When asked, Ira said that some of his favorite memories began at age 8 when he first spent time behind a griddle learning to flip hamburgers at get-togethers with his parents. Through high school and during college he worked in food environments and along the way became a reasonably proficient short-order cook.

Though he enjoyed these experiences, working side-by-side with professional chefs caused him to realize that pursuit of the culinary arts was more of a passion than an occupational calling of which he would be worthy so he eventually settled on the practice of law.

Whilst being kept busy with his practice, he always tried to carve out time to serve as a food and wine educator, competition judge, as well as dinner organiser and host. The passion born behind the hamburger griddle so many years ago has never waned!

Norbert Simon, Bailli Délégué of Austria
After military service and gaining a Master Degree in Political Science, in 1979 Norbert joined the Austrian Federal Ministry for Foreign Affairs. During 1980-1994 he served at the Austrian Embassies in Beirut, Paris and Seoul as well at the Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York.

From 1994 to 1999 he was attached to the Political Directorate at the headquarters of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs before being appointed Director of the Department for Development Cooperation at the Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs.

Since 2004 he has been Director of the Department of Finance and Human Resources at the Austrian Development Agency (ADA), the operational unit of the Austrian Development Cooperation, a position which takes him to far flung corners of the world where Chaîne Bailliages are delighted to welcome him.

Five new members were appointed to the Conseil Magistral …

Shabnam Nayer, Bailli Délégué of Kenya
Whilst everyone else mentioned in this article was inducted at the International Grand Chapitre in Paris, Shabnam received her insignia as a Member of the Conseil Magistral at a colourful Induction Ceremony in Vienna, part of the Bailliage of Austria’s 50th Anniversary Grand Chapitre.

A retired headmistress, Shabnam is a published author of a children’s book. She continues to write in her spare time. Another passion is honing her cooking skills and she often hosts Bailliage Council members to dinner at her home after meetings.
 
Physically active, she holds a diving certificate, windsurfs, has done a sky dive and delights in trekking and mountain climbing (notably Kilimanjaro twice and Mount Kenya six times!)

As Bailli Délégué of Kenya, Shabnam has established a strong bond between East African members. Promotion of the Chaîne in Africa and maintaining its high standards remains at the forefront of her objectives.

Steve Gross, Argentier of USA
Steve Gross is the Founder Emeritus of HLB Gross Collins. He was Regional Managing Partner, National Director of Business Consulting and a member of the Executive Committee of an international accounting firm.

Steve founded Trusted CFO Solutions and Business Builders Team to assist businesses and management teams in being exposed to, educated and assisted in transitioning their administrative and financial reporting internal operations to “New Platform Technology”.

He also founded Gross Capital Partners and The Gross Consulting Group at the end of 2011 to pursue advising, servicing and providing capital to business transactions and operating companies.

In his capital formation role for clients over the past 35 years he has assisted in raising capital and financing for hundreds of companies and provided capital in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Steve is a licensed CPA, Chartered Global Management Accountant, Certified Fraud Examiner, Certified Valuation Analyst, and he is a Certified in Financial Forensics.

Steven Kahn, Bailli Délégué of Hong Kong
Graduating with a Business degree from Northeastern University in Boston in 1966, Steven became an Officer Candidate in Guerilla Warfare Training, which led to his being commissioned as a Lieutenant in 1966. In the immediate years after he was appointed Commanding Officer of the DMZ in Korea. During this time he received combat awards and later attained the rank of Captain.

Leaving the military, in 1969 he joined Schuco Toy Co USA as a Vice-President. From 1975 to 1977 was President of the American Toy Association leading to joining Powco Toys Hong Kong. From 1986 to his retirement in 2015, Steven was CEO of his own company, Mannix Hong Kong, which manufactured toys, party goods, promotional items and watches to name but four specialties.

Thore Sande, Bailli Délégué of Norway
Thore was promoted to be Bailli Délégué of Norway in April 2016. Originally joining the Chaîne in 1999 as a Maître Hôtelier in the Bailliage of Vestfold, he became Bailli in 2005 before being promoted to Chancelier in 2009. When Rolf Braend decided to stand down it was logical that Thore took his place.

In 1972 he started his career in the hospitality profession as a trainee at the well-known Hotel Continental in Oslo. He progressed to be a Head Waiter, Food and Beverage Manager and eventually Hotel General Manager before in 2005 establishing Herskapelig AS, his own restaurant and banqueting company.

Tomi Lantto, Chargé de Missions of Finland
Catharina Henrika Antell was a woman of exceptional quality in Finland in the late 1800s. She obtained permission from the Oulu Magistrates to engage in bakery operations in the city. From a modest beginning the Antell business grew and grew eventually leading to its purchase by the Lantto family in 1976.

In 2003, Company Chairman Ilkka Lantto handed over responsibility for the company to the next generation, Tomi and Annukka Lantto.

Today, Antell is a nationally-renowned staff catering, cafeteria and bakery company employing 600 skilled workers. Its head office and bakery are still located in Oulu where the company was founded.

As Tomi says, “In more than 135 years of history, Antell has seen and experienced a lot. The secret of our success is continuous development, humanity, and immediacy in all our activities. Looking ahead, Antell enthusiastically embraces the future in partnership with its customers.”

We wish these eight new “red ribbons” all the best for their respective terms of office. With skill sets acquired through diverse careers, it is clear that they will bring valued experience to the Chaîne with its values of gastronomy and camaraderie, the common link between them all.

Marie Jones
Managing Editor