Faculty & Staff
SFBI Faculty and Staff
Our talented faculty and staff are dedicated to providing a comprehensive learning experience that provides rigorous hands-on training while fostering creativity. We deliberately maintain small class sizes to provide our students with the benefits of collaborative learning as well as individualized instruction.
President and Founder
Michel Suas is internationally recognized as an industry expert and thought leader, and is a strong advocate of using education to advance the appreciation and craft of artisan baking. The Bread Bakers' Guild of Americaawarded Michel their Golden Baguette in recognition of his enormous contributions to the Guild and the artisan baking industry. The Bread Project named Michel an honorary life member in recognition of his guidance and support.
A native of France, Michel started baking when he was fourteen. In France, Michel trained under several renowned chefs and won two silver medals as a Certified Pastry Chef and Certified Culinary Chef in the national CAP exam. At the age of 21, Michel was named head pastry chef at Barrier's restaurant – at the time it was one of just twelve French restaurants honored with three stars by the Michelin guide. After moving to the United States, Michel founded both the San Francisco Baking Institute and TMB Baking, a top national bakery design consultancy and equipment distributor. Together, SFBI and TMB Baking provide the baking industry with the highest level of education, consulting, and equipment. These services have helped many of the world's best-known bakeries develop operational efficiency and quality production.
Baking and Pastry Instructor
Miyuki Togi works with SFBI as a bread, viennoiserie, and pastry instructor, and as the production manager for Thorough Bread and Pastry.
In 2006, Miyuki joined SFBI as an intern. Upon completing her internship, Miyuki was promoted to Assistant Instructor. She is integrally involved in most of the school's activities – ranging from formula and course development to teaching. Miyuki contributed to publishing Advanced Bread and Pastry in a number of ways: she wrote and edited, she created products for photo shoots, and she guided the effort to create an extensive library of video footage for every process of every formula in the book. Miyuki worked with Kate Good, Safa Hamzé, and Mac McConnell to create the enormous bread snail for Slow Food Nation 2008.
Prior to joining SFBI, Miyuki graduated summa cum laude from Johnson & Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island, with a Bachelor's degree in Culinary Arts and an Associate degree in Baking and Pastry Arts. She also studied at DCT Swiss Hotel Management School in Switzerland.Throughout her school years, Miyuki staged at restaurants in Providence, RI, and Boston, MA.
Baking and Pastry Instructor
Mac McConnell is a bread baking instructor at SFBI. Mac is a graduate of the Professional Training program offered at SFBI. Before returning as an instructor, Mac was the head baker at Berkshire Mountain Bakery in Western Massachusettes. Berkshire Mountain Bakery specializes in highly hydrated whole grain sourdough breads. Mac consults for SFBI in between bread classes and has helped bakeries across North and Central America develop bread formulas and processes.Prior to coming to SFBI to study, Mac worked as a mechanical engineer for Caterpillar. The precise laboratory environment from engineering translates well to baking. Mac enjoys deconstructing the complexities of baking and conveying that information to students.Mac recently taught a Master Class for the Bread Bakers Guild of America. Read an interview done by Jessica Pedemont on Mac. Download here.
Baking and Pastry Instructor
Mary has over 30 years in the pastry industry. She graduated from the California Culinary Academy with Professional Chef Certification in 1981 and then completed a pastry apprenticeship at Abderhalden Konditorei in Wattwil, Switzerland. She spent majority of her time in the pastry kitchen, but did rotations through the chocolate and bread production kitchens as well. She was lead cake decorator at Copenhagen Bakery in Burlingame, CA and Pastry Chef at the Marriott Hotel in Burlingame where she developed and introduced a product line of in-house breads (banquet and restaurant), plated dessert presentations for regional JW restaurants and established in-house production of wedding cakes. Mary was also responsible for numerous elaborate holiday lobby displays, including life size gingerbread houses with completely edible furnishings. She also spent time in sales with Albert Uster Imports. Mary owned Chocoelat Wedding Cakes, and supplied numerous banquet facilities in the bay area with their wedding cakes for 8 years. She was most recently a pastry chef instructor at the Cordon Bleu/California Culinary Academy for 3 years. Mary was named one of the top 30 wedding cakes designers out of 700 pastry chefs nationally by Domaine Carneros Winery.
Other Awards: First Place Prize, Chef's Association of the Pacific Coast, American Culinary Federation Competition, Executive Chef Award (Marriott Hotel) for Effort and Achievement
Kate works with SFBI as an assistant instructor. She was previously the head baker for Thorough Bread and Pastry. Kate joined SFBI as an intern in 2007. Upon completing her internship, Kate was promoted to Assistant Instructor. She is involved in many of SFBI's activities, including mentoring interns, developing formulas, and teaching. Kate worked with Miyuki Togi, Safa Hamzé, and Mac McConnell to create the massive bread snail for Slow Food Nation 2008. Before she joined SFBI, Kate graduated summa cum laude from Johnson & Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island, with a BS in Baking and Pastry Arts. Kate graduated as a University Honors Scholar and was inducted into both the Alpha Beta Kappa Honor Society and the Golden Quill Honor Society. She studied at the DCT Swiss Hotel Management School in Switzerland, and interned at the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort & Spa in Farmington, Pennsylvania, and at the Sun Valley Resort, in Sun Valley, Idaho.