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CIA Faculty Vote of "No Confidence" in President Tim Ryan

Has anyone heard about this? It seems that an overwhelming majority of the faculty at "The Worlds Premier Culinary College" have deemed Dr. L Timothy Ryan, '77 (one of their own graduates and the youngest ever Certified Master Chef) as unfit for running the institute. What's going on at the CIA?

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  1. Did you check Michael Ruhlman's blog? He may have something on it.

    1. This is reported in "The Chronicle of Higher Education." It explains the problems prompting the vote as disagreements over class size and teaching materials. The weird part is, within 3 hours of the vote, the Board of Directors met and extended Dr. Ryan's contract without addressing the teachers. Haven't been able to find anything else.

      1. The faculty at the CIA voted "no confidence" in Tim Ryan as president and stated that he has mismanaged the school and cultivated "a prevailing climate of oppression at the Culinary Institute of America." Faculty were quoted as saying that they "live in fear of retaliation," if they disagree with Tim Ryan or his cabinet. As a current student, I can tell you that the school is not what people think. I should have gone to Johnson and Wales! I can't wait to get out of the CIA! Especially with all of this going on. I think Mr. Ryan should step down! This link has the whole story...it's worth reading! http://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/ap...

        1. I can tell you what's going on. The students and faculty are tired of Tim Ryan's dictator-like management style. As an alumni of the CIA and a former chef instructor, I can tell you there are many so problems there. If Mr. Ryan would consider what is best for the students and the school, rather than just wanting to create his own "culinary dynasty" then maybe things would not have gotten to this point. He and his administration really needed to listen to the concerns of the faculty, staff and the students. The place seems to be in big trouble. Maybe if he left the school things would improve. I think that he and his "cabinet" all have to leave for any positive change to happen.

          1. As a current student i am very concerned regarding this entire issue. The tarnish upon the CIA courtesy of Mr. Ryan needs to be removed. Students are deliberately kept in the dark regarding the entire matter so we would not be forced to "choose sides" because in the presidents mind the matter only involves the faculty and the board. The Culinary Institute of America is a non profit school that is dedicated to its students. That level of dedication is slipping. With the lack of checks and balances President Ryan has assumed control. The drop from 3.0 to 2.0 is embarrassing. Class sizes are rising so much so that (pardon the pun) there are too many cooks in the kitchen. Students are fighting for tools equipment and space that are not available in large classes. The standard tool kit for culinary students breaks and is disgusting in its lack of quality. If a school was preparing ts students to be the best in the industry wouldn't they give the students equipment to match?

            1 Reply
            1. re: ccr

              I am not surprised by this thread. I graduated just before the CIA really started to change (93). The school had yet to break ground on many new building and it was still simply a CULINARY SCHOOL. Suddenly it got huge, and tried to become more like a college, even going so far as to build a student union. I think it lost something in the process. Ferdinand Metz who was the president when I was there, worked hard on keeping the Europeon style of training chefs as an important part of the education process while trying to keep up to date as to what was new and exciting in the industry. I am proud to be a graduate, but I am am also embarresed as to what the school has become and what the industry says about the what the school has become.

            2. i attended the cia in the late 80s and it was the same dictatorial rule back then when tim ryan was brown nosing then president ferdinand metz.
              the fact is, tim ryan never was a "real" chef and probably never aspired to be--he was and is an administrator. he essentially went to the cia back in 75 and never really left.
              i'm sure he has his own public relations agent--and he calls himself Dr. just because he has a PhD--not unethical but quite misleading. for the last quarter century at least, the students and instructors have had no voice--this man is all about building a legacy for himself, not for the school. too bad. i was fortunate to have had a free-ride to the cia and still i left after one year. (yes, they do give full tuition scholarships to some students)

              7 Replies
              1. re: crynecki

                I'm not a culinary student or graduate of a culinary academy; just an average Josephine who likes to cook.

                But I'd read this thread when it was started several years ago, and I just remembered - Tim Ryan just got inducted into the Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America (along with others) at the most recent James Beard Foundation awards.

                I'm not sure who gets to vote on that particular "award" or if campaigning to win is allowed, but I guess enough people thought highly enough of him to have him be inducted into this particular Who's Who.

                1. re: LindaWhit

                  I understand - and this is only hearsay - that the JB awards are very much a clannish in-crowd kind of thing.

                  1. re: LindaWhit

                    Campaigning to win is SOP, in the whole Beard setup. He's probably given a bunch of money to the foundation "on condition." Sometimes those awards are given on merit, other times, not so much. They need donations, and imho can be swayed by them. They're far from the only organization that gives awards on that kind of "merit."

                    1. re: ChefJune

                      Blech, then. I suspected as much, but was hoping it wasn't the case.

                  2. re: crynecki

                    "and he calls himself Dr. just because he has a PhD--not unethical but quite misleading"

                    What on earth is misleading about this? If you have a Ph.D., you ARE a Doctor! I have a Ph.D. and I refer to myself as "Dr. Nofunlatte" (okay, I use my real last name). I have no doubt that your comments about his dictatorial style and his lack of "cheffing" is correct, but there is nothing at all untoward about using the title "Dr." if indeed he has completed a Ph.D.

                    1. re: nofunlatte

                      Agreed, it is a very common and accepted practice. If you earn a Ph.D. in any discipline you can officially be referred to as a "Doctor"... you don't have to be an MD

                  3. I am a graduate of CIA 85 & reading some of the comments about the schools integrity & drop in commitment to the Culinary profession a bit alarming! I would concur in the years I attend under Ferdinand Metz the school was very cutting edge always contemporary & dedicated to the advancement of the future Culinarians. I believe if there is a cancer infecting the fine attributes this school of learning has provided for years then it would be better to cut it out where ever it was & restructure!