Rhonda Manning

Class of 2001, Chef/Owner, House of Soul Food

A passion for the kitchen

Rhonda Manning Photo

A graduate of Mission's Hospitality Management Program, RHONDA MANNING is the chef/owner of House of Soul Food, one of Silicon Valley's most popular soul food dining establishments. Inspired by her mother and grandmother's ability to create delicious traditional southern style dishes and feed the entire neighborhood, Rhonda was drawn to into the kitchen at an early age.

Although Rhonda grew up with a passion for the kitchen, she initially chose to pursue a career in the electronics field and planned to earn a BS Degree in Electrical Engineering. During the year 1999, a life event caused Rhonda to change her career plans and she enrolled in Mission's Hospitality Management Program. She found the program both challenging and comprehensive. Rhonda learned everything she needed to know to own, operate and manage a restaurant. Just as she was about to graduate from the Hospitality Management Program, she bought her first restaurant and opened the doors for business only four days after commencement. Mission's Hospitality Management Program provided a Rhonda with a solid foundation for success and at the end of her first year, her restaurant made a profit.

What Rhonda loves most about serving southern style comfort food is that it brings people together, nurtures community and makes people happy. House of Soul Food specialties include brisket, barbecue ribs, fried chicken, catfish, collard greens, and mac and cheese.

Rhonda's advice to future chefs: attend all of your classes and pay close attention to what's being taught. Everything you learn will be of great benefit and help you to be successful in your future culinary career. Rhonda also credits Haze Dennis and Scott Brunson with providing the support and expert advice she needed to be successful.