Hell's Kitchen winners: their lives before and after the show
Hell’s Kitchen is an American cooking competition show which premiered on Fox on 30 May 2005. The series is hosted by Gordon Ramsay, a British chef, restaurateur, television personality, and writer. There have been 21 Hell's Kitchen winners since the show first aired in 2005. This article contains the list of past Hell’s Kitchen winners and what they have been up to since leaving the show.
Hell's Kitchen is an entertaining cooking show with a tempting grand prize that includes $250,000 and the chance to work for chef Gordon Ramsay. Since the show premiered in 2005, the show has produced 21 winners, and some work for Gordon Ramsay while others are now running their own restaurants and catering companies.
Hell’s kitchen winners
Hell’s Kitchen has aired 21 seasons, with the recent season 21 which premiered on 29 September 2022 and concluded on 9 February 2023. With Fox's Hell's Kitchen renewed, many fans are looking back at previous winners to see what happened to those who survived Gordon Ramsay's kitchen. Below is a list of Hell's Kitchen's winners ranked from the latest season to the oldest.
Season 21 - Alex Belew
- Full name: Alex Belew
- Place of birth: Murfreesboro, Tennessee, United States
Alex Belew from Murfreesboro, Tennessee was crowned by Hell's Kitchen as its 21st winner on February 2023. Alex was awarded the head chef position at the Gordon Ramsay Hell's Kitchen restaurant in Caesars Atlantic City, with a $250,000 salary.
Prior to winning, Alex owned the restaurant, Dallas and Jane in Murfreesboro for four years from April 2018 to April 2022. He also had a meal prep company called Made South Meals. The chef is also the owner and executive chef of AB Hospitality.
Season 20 - Trenton Garvey
- Full name: Trenton Garvey
- Place of birth: Union, Missouri
Trenton Garvey won season 20 of Hell’s Kitchen in 2021 at 23. He collected $250,000 and landed a job as head chef at Gordon Ramsay Steak in Las Vegas. Before winning, Trenton was an executive chef at The Blue Duck, a popular restaurant in Maplewood, Mo. Currently, Chef Trenton works at The Bedford by Martha Stewart in Paris.
Season 19 - Kori Sutton
- Full name: Kori Sutton
- Age: 39 years old (as of 2023)
- Place of birth: Newport Beach, California, USA
Kori Sutton won season 19 of Hell’s Kitchen in 2021 at 37. She was awarded a head chef position as a head chef at Gordon Ramsay Hell's Kitchen Restaurant in Lake Tahoe with a $250 thousand salary. She previously worked as the culinary face of the Five Star Garza Blanca Preserve Resort & Spa in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
She also previously appeared on Top Chef Mexico and was a winner on Cutthroat Kitchen. Currently, Kori offers private chef services.
Season 18 - Ariel Contreras-Fox
- Full name: Ariel Contreras-Fox
- Date of birth: 31 October 1981
- Place of birth: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Ariel Contreras-Fox emerged as a winner of season 18 in 2019. The New York-based chef was awarded the position of executive chef at Gordon Ramsay Hell’s Kitchen Restaurant at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, however, she turned down the coveted position. Ariel now works as the vice president of Del Frisco's Double Eagle, Del Frisco's Grille, and Dos Caminos.
Season 17 - Michelle Tribble
- Full name: Michelle Tribble
- Date of birth: 20 December 1990
- Place of birth: Dallas, Texas, United States
Michelle Tribble won season 17 of Hell's Kitchen and became head chef at the new Hell’s Kitchen restaurant at Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas. However, she lost her role as a result of the pandemic.
The Texas native now works on the corporate culinary team for Gordon Ramsay North America as the culinary development executive chef.
Season 16 - Kimberly-Ann Ryan
- Full name: Kimberly-Ann Ryan
- Date of birth: 20 April 1985
- Place of birth: Traverse City, Michigan, United States
Kimberly-Ann Ryan is widely known for winning season 16 of the reality cooking series Hell's Kitchen in 2017. She also won a head chef position at Yardbird Southern Table & Bar at The Venetian Las Vegas. Before she became part of the show, she worked as an event chef. Her first job was at The Cook’s House.
Season 15 - Ariel Malone
- Full name: Ariel Malone
- Place of birth: Hackensack, New Jersey, USA
Ariel Malone won season 15 of Hell's Kitchen title in 2016 at 26. After winning the reality show, she began working as head chef at BLT Steak in Bally’s C*sino in Las Vegas, Nevada. However, Ariel later left the job and started a private chef career. She frequently posts pictures of her dishes on social media.
Season 14 - Meghan Gill
- Full name: Meghan Gill
- Date of birth: 17 October 1986
- Place of birth: Roanoke, Virginia
At 28 years old, Megan won season 14 Hell's Kitchen series in 2015. She worked as the head chef at the Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill at Caesars Palace in Atlantic City, New Jersey. She held the position from July 2015 to July 2017. Meghan is now the executive chef at Dormie Network of golf clubs. The chef also worked as a sous chef at 2941 restaurant in Falls Church, Virginia, United States.
Season 13 - La Tasha Mccutchen
- Full name: La Tasha Mccutchen
- Birthday: 28 September
- Place of birth: Winter Haven, Florida, USA
Chef La Tasha McCutchen from Winter Haven, Florida, won season 13 in 2014 at 33. She worked for a year as a head chef at the Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill at Caesars Palace in Atlantic City, New Jersey before she took a role of a private chef. La Tasha previously worked as a kitchen supervisor at Marriott International in Miami Beach, Florida.
Season 12 - Scott Commings
- Full name: Scott Commings
- Place of birth: Woodstock, Illinois, United States
Scott Commings from Woodstock, Illinois, emerged as a winner of season 12 in 2014. He began working as a head chef position at Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill in Caesars Palace in Las Vegas before he became an executive chef at Freedom Beat at the Downtown Grand Hotel in Las Vegas. He is also the co-founder of BLT Foods Las Vegas and Established Culinary Management in Las Vegas, Nevada Area.
Season 11 - Ja’Nel Witt
Full name: Ja’Nel Witt
Place of birth: Houston, Texas
After winning season 11 of Hell's Kitchen in July 2013, Ja'Nel was awarded a position of the head chef position at the Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill at the Caesars Palace c*sino in Las Vegas. However, she was denied the position after reportedly failing a drug test. The chef moved back to Texas and began working as the executive chef at Corner Table in Houston and then Sammy’s Steakhouse in Richmond.
Season 10 - Christina Wilson
- Full name: Christina Wilson
- Date of birth: 15 January 1979
- Place of birth: Phillipsburg, Pennsylvania
Who is the most successful Hell's Kitchen winner? Christina Wilson of season ten is the most successful winner of this television show. The American chef and reality TV personality was the winner of season 10 of Hell's Kitchen in September 2012. She started working as the chef de cuisine at Gordon Ramsay Steak at the Paris Las Vegas before she became the corporate executive chef at Gordon Ramsay BurGR in the Planet Hollywood C*sino.
Since 2020, Christina has been working as the vice president of Culinary of Gordon Ramsay North America.
Season 9 - Paul Niedermann
- Full name: Paul Niedermann
- Place of Birth: Davie, Florida, United States
Paul Niedermann from Davie, Florida, United States, is the winner of season 9 of Hell's Kitchen. He began working for the BLT Group, including a position at BLT Steak in New York City, before returning to Florida, where he worked at Hudson at Waterway East and later at SALT7 in Delray Beach, Florida. He has been working as a head chef at ESquared Hospitality since 2011.
Season 8 - Nona Sivley
- Full name: Nona Johnson
- Place of birth: Atlanta, Georgia, United States
Chef Nona Sivley won season 8 of Hell’s Kitchen competition, receiving a head chef position at the LA Market at JW Marriott Hotel in Los Angeles. After spending years at LA Market, she worked at Pork & Beans in Las Vegas. She launched her own company called Sizzling Peach and a grocery store company called the Fizzy Peach in Norcross, Georgia.
Season 7 - Holli Ugalde
- Full name: Holli Ugalde
- Date of birth: 22 September 1986
- Place of birth: San Bernardino, California, USA
Holli Ugalde from San Bernardino, California, was Hell's Kitchen season 7 winner. She was previously awarded a position at London's Savoy Grill but could not take the job. Holli returned to Florida, where she was the executive chef at B Ocean’s. She currently runs the SENS Wellness lifestyle programme and sells products produced on her farm.
Season 6 - Dave Levey
- Full name: Dave Levey
- Birthday: 19 December
- Place of birth: Chester, New Jersey, United States
Chef Levey from Chester, New Jersey, was 32 when he won the sixth season of Hell’s Kitchen in October 2009. After winning Hell’s Kitchen, Dave Levey worked at Araxi Restaurant and Bar in Whistler, British Columbia. He later left the job and returned to New Jersey to work as a chef and baker at various restaurants.
Season 5 - Danny Veltri
- Full name: Daniel Veltri
- Place of birth: Edgewater, Florida
Danny Veltri from Edgewater, Florida, won Hell's Kitchen season 5 in May 2009 and was awarded a job at Fornelletto at the Borgata Hotel C*sino in Atlantic City, New Jersey. He opened his own catering company, Back From Hell Catering, and later launched Salt Life Food Shack in Florida. His business has three restaurants in the Sunshine State. Before that, he worked at Gnarly Surf Bar & Grill in the Sunshine State.
Season 4 - Christina Machamer
- Full name: Christina Machamer
- Date of birth: 13 March 1982
- Place of birth: St. Louis, Missouri, USA
Christina was crowned the winner of the fourth season of Hell's Kitchen in 2008 at 25. After winning Hell's Kitchen, she worked as a senior chef at the Gordon Ramsay restaurant in the London West Hollywood hotel and then at Bouchon Bistro in Yountville. The chef also worked at B Cellars Vineyards & Winery, Caldwell Vineyard in Napa, and launched her own company, Napa Valley Experiences.
Season 3 - Rahman ‘Rock’ Harper
- Full name: Rahman Harper
- Date of birth: 17 December 1976
- Place of birth: Spotsylvania Courthouse, Virginia, USA
Rahman from Virginia is the Hell's Kitchen season 3 winner. He won the title in 2007 when she was 30. After working for a year at the Terra Verde restaurant in the Green Valley Ranch c*sino in Henderson, Nevada, the chef started working as an executive chef at Ben's Next Door in Washington.
He later became an instructor at Stratford University, and in 2010, he published the book 44 Things Parents Should Know about Healthy Cooking for Kids. He is the owner of Queen Mother's in Arlington, Virginia, where he currently works as a chef. He is also the president of RockSolid Creative Food Group and Chef Rock company and hosts The Chef Rock Xperiment Podcast.
Season 2 - Heather West
- Full name: Heather Marie West
- Birthday: 10 April
- Place of birth: Port Jefferson, New York, United States
Heather West from New York was 25 when she won the second season in 2006. She was awarded the senior chef position at the Terra Rossa restaurant at the Red Rock C*sino in Las Vegas. She has worked as Head Chef at three restaurants, including Monteray, Jellyfish, and Schafers in Long Island. She also runs a non-profit organization called East End Play Dates in Long Island and Nashville.
Season 1 - Michael Wray
- Full name: Michael Wray
- Date of birth: 17 April 1977
- Place of birth: Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
Michael was the first contestant to win the Hell’s Kitchen in August 2005 when he was 27. He opted to work with Ramsay in London but later declined to become head chef at the exclusive Standard hotel in Los Angeles. He moved to Arizona and created the knife company Skull and Cleavers and teaches cooking classes.
The chef battled an addiction to opiates, resulting from highly addictive painkillers on prescription, after back surgery. Michael currently resides in San Diego with his family and has plans to start a food truck business.
Hell's Kitchen has run on Fox network for 21 seasons. Therefore, there have been 21 Hell's Kitchen winners since the show first premiered on 30 May 2005. All winners got the chance to work with Gordon Ramsay in London, and most of them established their restaurants, and others became private chefs after leaving the show.
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