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AUGUST 23RD, 2011 QUESTION

How easy or difficult would you say it is to move up the chain in the restaurant industry in New Orleans?

It is very difficult, but not impossible. I have found that the best way to advance is by committing yourself to a place that can challenge you and allow you to learn. You really have to put in the time. You can't really just walk into any place in New Orleans and declare you want the job. You gotta learn the ropes. I've worked at three places in the last fifteen years, and I've been at Herbsaint for the last eleven. I learned the value of commitment from Frank Brightsen. His work ethic is the template of what it takes to become a chef. Working for Donald Link I've learned to harness that.

I hope that answers your questions. Feel free to email me if you need anything else.

Gambino

AUGUST 15TH, 2011 QUESTION

I'm an artist and I love New Orleans. I am looking at potentially making a move, but want to know what steps do you think I should take to start moving my business in that direction? Is workspace an issue? Are galleries easy to work with and do they help artists show their work?

New Orleans is a great place to be for artists. There is a strong community of good working artists here. I primarily needed to find a studio work space, so this was the first thing I sought out for. I lucked out and found one downtown in the New Orleans Arts District, it was a great move for me personally. I can open my studio if I would like or I can close it up and work. I suggest finding a good place that works for you personally- make it your own. People like seeing a natural working habitat but keep in mind that if you would like people to come in by appointment, it needs to be presentable. I like having a show area that stays clean and a back area I can work freely in that can get messy. There are lots of little spots like this all over New Orleans.

AUGUST 15TH, 2011 QUESTION

You are out in the community a lot. Do you see a shift in the way that locals feel about New Orleans and are they welcoming to newcomers?

Locals in New Orleans have a renewed “can-do” spirit. We are more positive about the state of our city’s population and economic recovery, and because we have greatly benefited from the tens of thousands of volunteers that have poured into our city to give a helping hand, we are proud whenever our city shows the ability to entice volunteers and visitors to stay longer, get jobs, and settle in. The many diverse people that have worked in New Orleans over the last few years has fueled energy along our downtown spines because those cultural pieces that locals are desensitized by are new and refreshing to newcomers. Any time you are able to see someone else’s first reaction to something, always re-kindles an appreciation within you.

New Orleans welcomes the newcomer to the city; their new perspective, diverse interests, talents, and frame of reference that can continue making our city a place where both the resident and visitors can appreciate the city’s culture and history while creating a work and play environment that is “in the know,” fun, and innovative.

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