Joanna Baker, originally from the island of Trinidad and Tobago, is the new general manager for dining at Miss Porter’s School. Her formative years were spent surrounded by the ocean breeze and a laid-back approach to life. Joanna migrated to the United States at the age of 12, but going back to the place of her origin has been a family tradition.
Joanna attended Northeastern University where she studied accounting for two years. She soon realized that her inherent artistic skill set would not allow her to be satisfied as an accountant. During a six months hiatus, she realized accounting was not her calling — rather, she was most passionate about impacting people for positive change.
She would soon enter Newbury College where she obtained her degree in culinary, hospitality, and psychology. She later became garde manger chef for the Ritz Carlton and Marriott International and worked in every area of service. In her prior position, she led a team of 62, while managing an account that grossed approximately 9.5 million dollars in catering sales, separately from room sales and other on and off-site events.
Joanna was fortunate to mirror those experiences at Barnard College, Columbia University, Princeton Theological Seminary and Rowan University. In her earlier professional retail experiences, she opened 13 Starbucks Coffee Companies, resulting in two-million-dollar cafes and four Panera Breads, including one of the largest and busiest in the United States. She has always returned to campus life, as she has found it to be the most fulfilling and rewarding.
Hailing from a close-knit family, she is the fourth child of five. She is also a parent of four sons and a daughter, and a grandmother of seven. She shares that her greatest accomplishments are her beautiful children. She is very excited to start this new chapter with the students, faculty, and staff at Miss Porter’s School, and looks forward to positively impacting the community.