Derrix Norman is a Certified Executive Chef at Rice University in Houston, Texas. His passion for cooking began in his early childhood spending time in the kitchen with his grandmothers. Functioning as the taste tester for his grandmothers he learned to master the tricks of the trade from fixing Sunday dinners to holiday cooking. While Chef Derrix always had a fond taste for spicy foods he had no idea he would later become known as the “Cajun Chef”. Chef Derrix attended the Culinary School Program at Houston Community College where he graduated at the head of his Culinary Arts class.
He began his professional career at the Holiday Inn, making salads and sandwiches as a pastry chef. The hotel’s Executive chef quickly spotted Derrix’s culinary skills and immediately moved him to the main line. Chef Derrix experimented with new dishes, working tirelessly to perfect his technique and expand his meal repertoire. This ceaseless work ethic catapulted him to the lead Banquet Chef and later to the Interim Executive Chef for the entire hotel. Chef Derrix later has also worked in the position of sous chef at Bon Apetit, an upscale catering company in Houston.
In 2000 Mark Ditman, the current Vice President of Housing & Dining offered him a position at Cohen House, Rice’s Faculty Dining Club. As a Managing Chef, he worked at Sid Rich and Will Rice until 2009, when he helped to open West Servery. He then became the Executive Chef at first South and then North Servery, before working at Seibel, North, and then Seibel again. In 2010, he won the second Rice-Houston Chili Cook-off. In the competition, a student-chef partnership from each university competes to decide who’s chili reigns supreme. Chef Derrix the “Cajun Chef” and his student partner took the title. Chef Derrix always strives to ensure that there are healthy options always available for students in the servery. In January 2011 Chef Derrix accepted the position of Executive Chef for Will Rice college and Lovett college(East Servery). Later that year he received his certification from the American Culinary Federation Board of Directors and The National Certification Commission as a Certified Executive Chef. Chef Derrix has many other Achievement awards and recognition for Competition while working at Rice University. He has been member of The American Culinary Federation since 1995 and a long standing member of The Texas Chef’s Association Houston Chapter. Chef Derrix has been at Rice for 14 years and he has cooked in every servery on campus. While Chef Derrix is truly a culinary artisan, the hallmark of his stewardship is the amount of care he shows for every student who enters his servery.