Mark your calendar, the Legacy Cafe grand opening is set for Jan. 18
from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. All of the kitchen equipment is ordered and the
layout is coming together. The Front of the House is just about done:
benches are built, tables have been ordered, and the chairs have
arrived. Soon we will be taking orders!
The Legacy Cafe will be open to the public Monday through Friday for
breakfast and lunch. We will be sharing our made-from-scratch menu
soon. Breakfast will include muffins, scones and quiche and don’t
forget coffee. Lunch will comprise of soups, salads and sandwiches.
Our cafe will serve as the hands-on training environment for our Youth
Workforce Development participants.
Beggining in March, the Legacy Youth Development program will serve
young people between the ages of 16-24 who are out of work and out of
school by teaching them life and occupational skills and help them to
overcome social barriers to employment.
Founded by Claire Prymus in honor of her late uncle, the Ben D.
Johnson Educational Center is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Its
mission is building community in Natchitoches and giving access to
social and economic success for all of its residents.
“Mr. Johnson helped me on my career path and gave me opportunities to
learn on the job and I am grateful for it,” said Betty Seymore, former
employee and neighbor of Mr. Johnson.
Mr. Johnson made a significant and lasting impact on Natchitoches and
its residents. He was generous and genuinely cared for those he came
in contact with. If you have a story or photo of Mr. Johnson consider
sharing them by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling (318)
We are excited to introduce our talented staff members that bring a
wealth of experience and passion for our mission.
Chef John Carriere has been in the food service industry for over 20
years, starting with catering while in high school. Through hard work
and various apprenticeships, Chef John worked his way up the ranks
holding many different positions: dishwasher, breakfast chef, banquet
chef, pastry chef, Sous chef, and Executive chef. After having worked
for a few years, Chef John attended school for culinary and pastry
arts in New Orleans. Following school, he worked in hotels and catered
while finishing a Bachelor of Science degree from LSU concentrating in
Food Science and Agriculture. In addition, Chef John taught at the
Louisiana Culinary Institute in Baton Rouge for four years. Chef John
is a Certified Executive Chef (C.E.C.) and whole heartedly looks
forward to teaching young chefs.
Shelley Mims is our Program Support Coordinator. She has 18 years of
experience in the food industry in Natchitoches, a Bachelor of Science
in Nutrition & Culinary Arts and a Master of Arts in Adult Education.
In addition to her food service background, Shelley also brings
experience in fundraising with strong ties to the community. She will
act as the life skills and culinary trainer for our Youth Development
Program participants. She will also act as a development associate
assisting with all aspects of fundraising and marketing. Shelly is a
lifetime resident of Natchitoches and has a passion for helping people
and her community.
Give back with no cost to you by using smile.amazon.com when doing
your amazon shopping. Simply choose the Ben D. Johnson Educational
Center as your organization and a percentage of your purchase will get
donated to the program.
Mark your calendars for our first Annual Legacy Lunch on Martin Luther
King, Jr. Day on Jan. 21 from 12-3 PM. The $10 lunch will include: Red
Beans and Rice, Crack’lin Cornbread, Dessert and Drink.
In addition, the Foundation is looking to furnish its classroom and
offices. It currently needs desks, office chairs, visitor chairs,
classroom chairs, bookshelves, and office supplies.