While getting well mentally, physically, and spiritually, having access to a healthy, balanced diet is crucial. Eating right and practicing good nutrition keeps the body strong and acts as a mood booster. Having a positive attitude paired with a healthy physique is ideal for undergoing drug addiction treatment. At Red Oak Recovery, our Culinary Team works hard to keep you feeling great throughout your stay.
Tom grew up in eastern North Carolina and after high school joined the Air Force and worked for UPS not really knowing what life had in store for him. Eventually, he found his love for food through a good friend and never looked back. Tom moved to Asheville to attend the culinary program at AB Tech.
While in school, he formed a concept with a good friend and opened Burgermeisters in downtown Asheville just as Asheville’s downtown revival was getting started. Before long Burgermeisters was a hit. It was a simple concept but far from basic. After 4 years he started a sell his veggie burgers to mainstream grocery stores and food companies. Long before “local,” “organic,” and “artisanal” were cool buzzwords, Tom and Burgermeisters were all of those things. Tom eventually moved his accidentally hip, cult classic restaurant to (soon to be) up and coming West Asheville. For more than 12 years Burgermeisters and Tom were a part of the fabric of the West Asheville community. Equal parts dive and family hangout it was a special spot that captured the zeitgeist of Tom’s love of being a cook (Tom deplores the title chef!), which is bringing people the simple joy of a really good meal. Looking to make self-care a priority, Tom sold the restaurant and took a much needed break to evaluate his and his family’s life.
With a little rest and his family’s love, he found a renewed passion for what he loved. Tom’s position at Red Oak Recovery® has brought his culinary experience and softer, gentler nature full circle allowing him to do what he truly loves but with a different sense of purpose. A man of few words, Tom still cares for people through food… but now nurtures them by feeding them as well. He takes his position at Red Oak very seriously and his personal mission is to always be a moment of joy and comfort during what is a brave and challenging journey. He loves working with his co-chefs to create menus of globally inspired comfort foods. He offers equal attention to detail to all dietary restrictions.
While not working, Tom has his hands full with a house full of girls. There is never a dull moment as his wife and two teenage daughters keep him busy with sports, school events, and feelings. Tom volunteers as the Concessions Manager for the Asheville High School boosters, a non- profit that raises money to keep sports participation free for AHS students.
Erin is originally from New York born and moved to Western North Carolina three years ago. With extensive experience in the restaurant industry, Erin has worked in every aspect of the field. She also has worked in the recovery field, with several years of working in Durham, North Carolina in some of the recovery houses there. Erin brings enthusiasm and passion to her work every day and is genuinely excited about connecting with Red Oak Recovery® clients by providing them with delicious and healthy meals. Her goal is to eventually work more directly with clients. Erin appreciates working with the culinary arts team at Red Oak and the comradery they have together.
Erin has three children and lives with her fiancé in Waynesville, North Carolina.
As an Asheville native, Haley grew up with a love and respect for the soothing forest song of the Appalachian Mountains and the fresh, cool ether that rolls through the Western North Carolina valley. She is a vehement young woman, told from an early age that she is an “old soul”. This may be due to a tough childhood, over which she has proudly persevered. Be that as it may, as they say in this area- You can’t help a bird from flying over your head but you can keep it from building a nest in your hair. It is by this positive mentality that Haley was able to find her passion for helping others. Red Oak Recovery® has given her an avenue to do just that.
She has found a community in Red Oak Recovery® that welcomes and hones her talents as a cook, an avid gardener and explorer, and a beacon of light to those suffering the heaviness of the darkness. Haley is one who understands and respects the tribulations of being human. As the great writer Madeline L’Engle says: “you have to know the darkness before you can appreciate the light.” The activities that bring Haley closer to her ‘light’ are hiking the gorgeous terrain she calls home, writing and drawing expressively, cooking splendid and heartfelt meals for those that she adores, tending to the gardens with passion and fervor unprecedented, and playing soulfully with her adorable white Pit Bull puppy Arcadia. Above all Haley loves to travel and appreciate all that our wondrous Earth has to offer… and she hasn’t even scratched the surface.