Maggie Trujillo, 35
Southern Oregon Masters (SOMA)
Executive Chef, Larks Inn at the Commons in Medford, Oregon
As Executive Chef, I am responsible for all food and kitchen staff at the Inn at the Commons. We have a 125-seat restaurant and lounge featuring a local farm to table menu. The produce we bring in is hyper-local featuring several local farms, creameries and foragers. I manage 20 cooks and dishwashers. I am also responsible for all banquet and catering for the hotel. I enjoy my job. I love being able to work with local farmers when I’m creating dishes. I also enjoy teaching my cooks. I have been with Larks for 3.5 years and have been cooking since 2002.
I grew up swimming in Idaho. I joined Caldwell Swim Club when I was 8 years old. I excelled in Backstroke, Freestyle, Butterfly and IM (everything but breaststroke). I was a top performer in the PNW region and was a nationally ranked age-grouper in backstroke. I swam for the Boise YMCA and Bishop Kelly High School in my teen years. I held several Snake River Records and High School Team Records. I enjoyed teaching others to swim and gave private swim lessons at my house throughout high school.
I stopped competing when I graduated high school. I attended college at Boise State for a year before I began working in a restaurant. At that point, my career path was set. I decided to attend Western Culinary Institute, Le Cordon Bleu in Portland, Oregon. I met my husband, Jason, in culinary school. We lived and worked in Portland for 5 years before relocating to the Rogue Valley.
Over the years, I swam off and on for fun, but not seriously. I enjoy running with my dogs and hiking. Last summer when the wildfire smoke became too intense to run outdoors, I decided it might be fun to get back in the pool to stay in shape, and that is where I met my swim crew. After one week back in the water, I met Matt Miller, Mark Hageman and Mike Servant. They were working out in the lane next to me at Superior Athletic Club, and swimming all strokes very fast. I was recruited to join Masters by Matt. In November, I attended my first swim meet in 17 years at the PNA Championships in Federal Way, WA, and made top ten national Masters times in the 200 back and 50 fly. I swam my second Masters competition a couple months later at the Oregon Association Championship meet in Corvallis.
Returning to the sport I loved so much as a child has been very fun and rewarding. SOMA swim team has grown tremendously since it was formed last year. I think my favorite part of returning to the sport, aside from the competition, is the tremendous sense of comradery amongst Masters swimmers. I enjoy challenging myself in the pool with my friends on a daily basis.
I enjoy cooking at home with my husband. We love camping all throughout Oregon when we can get away, and I intend to try some open water swims this summer.