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posted: 9/25/2013 6:05 AM

Meet the Week 3 Cook of the Week Challenge judges

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  • Mario O. Portanova

    Mario O. Portanova


Week 3 brought one new face to the judges panel. Mario O. Portanova represented Porte Brown LLC, a group of certified public accountants, as two contestants tackled building dinner for four with $20 and a bag of frozen peas.

Here's an introduction to Portanova and a reintroduction to the others on the panel:

Mario O. Portanova: Throughout his 32 years in the accounting and tax profession Portanova has specialized in the grocery and restaurant industry providing valuable counsel for his numerous clients. As a director at Porte Brown LLC in Elk Grove Village his experience and interpersonal savvy allow him to go beyond the basic accounting services. Portanova grew up in Chicago working in the grocery and restaurant industry and attended DePaul University where he received his bachelor's in accounting. He lives in the Chicago area with his family.

Andrea Dembinski: Cooking specialist at Whole Foods Market, Schaumburg

John Junior: Executive chef at the Hyatt Regency Woodfield Schaumburg

Penny Kazmier: Winner of the 2011 Cook of the Week Challenge

Michael Pennisi: Winner of the 2012 Cook of the Week Challenge

Beth Peterson: Culinary instructor, caterer, owner of Beth's Table in Naperville

Suzy Singh: Research and development chef for Now Foods in Bloomingdale

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