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We're excited to see the field of competitors who have already won their golden ticket and registered to compete at the 2024 World Food Championships. And we are always proud to announce our special guests and celebrity judges participating in our judging events across the nation - we're sure the championship food certainly helps! Best of luck to our 2024 competitors!


Foodie For You

HEAD COOK: Leah Lyon

COMPETITION: World Rice and Noodle Championship

I’ve lived in Oklahoma my entire life, specifically in Ada for the last 30 years. My husband and I have four grown daughters and one baby granddaughter. I currently serve as the Director of the Office of Sponsored Programs and Research at East Central University, and have been at ECU since 2005. I have a B.S. in Business Administration, a M.S.Ed. in Educational Technology, and an Oklahoma teacher certification. I grew up in a large family, cooking in a large country kitchen from the time I can remember. I enjoy entertaining, cooking, traveling, reading, and spending time with my daughters and family. I began entering cooking contests in 2002 or so, took a small break a few years back to care for and spend time with my aging parents, and just in the last 2-3 years have taken it up again. I also occasionally offer personal chef services, and in 2020 opened my own LLC. I have been very fortunate to have success in both online and live recipe, cooking, and cocktail competitions, and enjoy it all tremendously. Cooking is my creative outlet. Being able to try new flavors and cooking techniques, and unusual combinations is thrilling. When I feel like I strike gold with a combination, technique, or dish, sharing the results with others is one of the best feelings in the world, and often turns out a new favorite. I really like the blend of science and art that is involved in cooking, wine and food pairing, and recipe development. Someone recently told me “food is your love language.” I think I agree.