Deet Gilbert grew up in New Orleans and attended Green Mountain College in Vermont. She returned to Louisiana to attend the University of New Orleans, where she received her Master of Fine Arts degree in Drama and Communications. Living in one of America’s great culinary centers allowed Gilbert to pursue her passion for food. She worked at a number of properties in the Crescent City before landing at Bayona under Chef Susan Spicer, winner of the James Beard Award for Best Chef, Southeastern Region in 1993. Gilbert worked at Peristyle under chef-proprietor Tom Wolfe, protégé of Emeril Lagasse and master of contemporary French cuisine. After 15 years in the restaurant industry, Gilbert left New Orleans for Charlotte, arriving at Upstream in Phillips Place for a brief stint before joining the faculty at JWU in 2006. Gilbert is a Certified Foodservice Professional and Certified Specialist of Wine. She also holds a Level 2 Certification in Spirits from WSET and a Hospitality Grand Master Certification from the Federation of Dining Room Professionals.