University Village Chef Michel Aviles competed in Life Care Services’ Chef of the Year Competition.

Senior living communities are changing the face of the dining industry. This is a must to keep up with the expectations of the 10,000 baby boomers reaching retirement age every day in the U.S.

You can ask University Village Thousand Oaks Director of Food and Beverage Michael Aviles all about the importance of dining for the senior population. Chef Aviles has cooked in restaurants for 20 years, and he even started his own business prior to joining the University Village team more than seven years ago.

Now, he’s tasked with creating new and inventive selections to spark the interest of the nearly 500 residents who dine at the community every day. Whether it’s herb-roasted New Zealand lamb rack with black cherry gastrique or crispy skin duck breast with dried fruit compote, he enjoys trying to entice the taste buds of the University Village residents.

This year, Chef Aviles was one of five chefs chosen out of 140 communities nationwide to compete in the Life Care Services® (LCS) Chef of the Year Competition. The live “Chopped” inspired showdown consisted of three rounds of competitions and eliminations. While Chef Aviles came in just shy of winning, he’s proud to be considered one of the top chefs in the senior living industry.

In fall 2019, Chef Aviles was featured in Food Management Magazine where he expanded on the importance of teamwork in the community.

“We like to have fun here,” Chef Aviles told the reporter. “Just razzing… but camaraderie. The company-wide goal is to work as teams and give recognition to team members.”