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MCVTS Perth Amboy Campus culinary teacher wins national Green Leader Award

MCVTS Perth Amboy culinary teacher wins national Green Leader Award

Chef Stephen Moir, the instructor in the culinary program on the Perth Amboy Campus of the Middlesex County Vocational and Technical Schools, has received the 2018 Green Leader Award of the Green Restaurant Association.

The Perth Amboy Campus culinary program was the first public school in the nation to be certified “green” by the Green Restaurant Association in 2016 and was upgraded by the association to three-star green status last year.

The Green Leader Award recognizes an individual who is “a champion of sustainability” in the restaurant community. The citation said Moir “included his high school students in the certification process, administers quizzes on restaurant sustainability, and teaches them to cook with local and sustainable ingredients. By incorporating his students into the certification process and beyond, he is educating the next generation about important environmental issues in their future career.”

“I am not surprised that Mr. Moir has earned this award,” Principal Robert Fuller said. “He has been at the forefront of the sustainability effort at the Perth Amboy Campus since I arrived in 2007. He leads his students by example and empowers them to take charge of their own learning so that they become independent thinkers and leaders.”

“I appreciate Steve Moir for undertaking the initiative of addressing sustainability in the culinary arts for our district,” said Sean McDonald, MCVTS director of career and technical education. “I was very impressed with Steve, as well as with the Green Restaurant Association’s high level of expectations, when we participated in a site visit walk-through of the culinary facility, equipment and supplies.

“Steve also completed an extensive application required by this process that was over and above his professional obligations as a teacher,” McDonald said.

“It was an honor to be nominated – I was the only educator nominated,” Moir said. “But it’s really a district award. Support was needed from the top down to be certified. Now it’s a matter of keeping it going.”

The three-star certification noted 53 environmental steps taken by the campus, including a comprehensive recycling program, use of a high-efficiency pre-rinse sprayer and faucet aerator to save water and energy, use of energy-saving lightbulbs, use of Energy Star equipment, which is 20 to 40 percent more energy efficient than traditional models, and employing aquaponics to grow some produce on the campus.

The Middlesex County Vocational and Technical School District, the first full-time county vocational school district in the nation, has campuses in East Brunswick, Edison, Piscataway, Perth Amboy and Woodbridge. The Perth Amboy Campus is one of three National Blue Ribbon Schools of Excellence in the district. 

Additional Information on the Green Restaurant Association, a national nonprofit trade organization can be obtained at