Paul Parent

I am a certified executive chef and food production manager. I got my first job as an executive chef at The Palomino Room in Sacramento when I turned 29. I then moved on to larger properties, such as The Hilton Arden West and as banquet chef at the Eldorado in Reno. I love to ride motorcycles and have a Springer Softail that I am on as much as possible, especially riding in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. I spend a lot of time at the Mission serving food and holding functions for our clients and the homeless. My job here isn’t just a job; it’s a passion. I remember what it is like to be in the Program, so I do what I can to make people here get the most they can out of their program.

What do you do at the Mission?
My official titles are Chef/Food Operations Manager. In my spare time, I teach three classes, split intake duties with the Chaplain and help clients see what their true potentials are in Christ.

Tell us about yourself.
I am a restaurant/banquet chef by trade, and cooking is in my blood. It’s amazing to me to be able to incorporate the lessons I have learned here and apply them to situations in the kitchen with our clients.

How did you end up at the Mission?
It was at a point in my life where I couldn’t control my addictions anymore, and I needed a new way. I know if I kept doing the things I was doing, I wasn’t going to live long.

What is one thing about you that surprises people?
My sense of humor and my heart – I have such a hard look that if I am not smiling, most people expect the worst.

What hobbies do you have?
I ride motorcycles, lift weights and play Xbox.

What is your favorite movie or television show?
“Godfather I” and “Godfather II”; “Shawshank Redemption”

What is the best criticism you have ever received?
You don’t have to do it all yourself.

What do you consider your biggest success?
Turning my stubborn and rebellious ways into being flexible, understanding and considerate toward others. Also, realizing that I can help others do the same.

What is the most influential book you’ve read besides the Bible?
Anyway: The Paradoxical Commandments by Kent M. Keith. It tells you to do your best possible – despite negativity.

Who has most impacted you on your spiritual walk?
Bill Roullier and Rick Redding. They both taught me a lot, including that you can be a regular guy and a Christian at the same time.

How did you come to know Christ?
By watching Him work in me and the people around me every day – from clients to staff, and the homeless and less fortunate.

Which biblical character do you identify with the most?
Peter, because he was brash, impetuous and emotional when he began his walk with Christ. As time moved forward, so did he. He matured in his faith, learned from his failures and was filled with the Holy Spirit.

What is your favorite memory at the Mission?
So many graduations I’ve been to… and I have cooked for more than 50 of them.

What do you like most about being part of the Mission team?
I have fellowship and good counsel that support and help me to consistently make the right decisions – and help pick me up if I don’t.

Why the Gospel Mission?
The Mission has been such an instrumental part of my recovery and change. I was honored to be chosen to work here. This is the most thoughtful and generous organization I have ever worked for.
homeless services, reno homeless services, sparks homeless services

You can help hurting neighbors find hope at the Reno-Sparks Gospel Mission!

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