Saturday, May 3, 2008

CONGRATULATIONS To Taste's own Zell Schulman!

OThe University of Kentucky College of Fine Arts will present an award this weekend to food writer Zell Schulman, an arts advocate who has served various arts organizations and founded arts advocacy groups serving Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky. Schulman, a writer for Taste Magazine Cincinnati, cook book author and former food editor of The American Israelite, will receive the College of Fine Arts Community Award at the College of Fine Arts Recognition Ceremony scheduled for 11 a.m. Sunday, May 4, at the Singletary Center for the Arts. The ceremony recognizes the college's students who are graduating.

Known by many as an accomplished food writer, Schulman made her mark locally and nationally with her cooking column "The Modern Jewish Cook" published by the oldest Jewish weekly The American Israelite. Over 18 years, she would serve the publication as a feature writer, columnist and food editor. Throughout her career in the food spotlight, Schulman has maintained a connection to her passion for the arts fostered by the love and guidance of musically inclined parents. She even used her culinary skills to raise money for the arts in her community by donating proceeds from her book "Planning Perfect Parties" to the Cincinnati Opera.

The UK alumna, who started working in television, never stopped serving the arts even as she took a 10 year hiatus to raise a family beginning in 1953. Schulman channeled her passion for the arts into service as an active community volunteer at various arts organizations. Over the last several years, she has served on numerous boards and committees for the Cincinnati Opera, Cincinnati Ballet, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Covington's Carnegie Visual and Performing Art Center, among others.

An alumna of University of Cincinnati, in 1975 Schulman founded and served as a president of The Friends of College Conservatory of Music at the university. She still serves the board of the community organization dedicated to raising funds for such items as student scholarships, competition travel, and master classes. More recently she organized a new arts advocacy group to support Cincinnati theatre.

"Zell's selfless generosity has made it possible for many arts organizations to grow and develop in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky," noted Dean of the College of Fine Arts Robert Shay. "She has even helped the area's arts organizations take advantage of the talents of our students and alumni at UK."

Schulman's love for the arts was influenced at an early age by musical parents who provided her with vocal and piano instruction by age 6. Her interest in the arts continued to grow fostered by more lessons in dance, art and elocution. As a junior in high school, Schulman wrote and produced a musical, "The Dixie Follies," for her high school Dixie Heights High School.

In fall of 1947, Schulman came to UK where she majored in drama and speech and minored in physical education. While in Lexington, she would work at a campus radio station, model for portrait classes, assist with slide setup for art lectures, and act and serve as crew for productions at the Guignol Theatre.

Upon graduation from UK in 1950, Schulman worked with Ziv Television Programs in Cincinnati and later worked at WKRC-TV, where she had the opportunity to serve as a production assistant on Rod Serling's live drama series "The Storm."

Schulman's joy for cooking was influenced by an opportunity to study the art in France with Simon Beck, a fellow author of Julia Child on "Mastering the Art of French Cooking." The lessons were a gift from her husband Mel, whom the author dubbed her most appreciative guest. Schulman went on to teach cooking classes in Cincinnati in the 1980s before starting her popular cooking column. Outside of her work for "The American Israelite, she has written three cookbooks, "Something Different for Passover," "Let My People Eat" and "Passover Seders Made Simple." A certified culinary professional and member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals, Schulman was selected in 1975 as one of the Cincinnati Enquirer's
"Women of the Year" and in 2002 was named to the same publication's "21 to Watch" list in the newspaper's Food section. Currently the writer is a contributor to Taste Magazine and

The College of Fine Arts Community Award is presented annually to an individual associated with UK who has contributed significantly to the fine arts and the public.

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