Perfecting Pizza was built to help you avoid common pitfalls and headaches that plague the industry and help you achieve profits that you never thought were possible.

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Michael Shepherd

Michael Shepherd is a four-time World Pizza Champion who has owned and operated multiple pizzerias in Northwest Ohio, most recently – Six Hundred Downtown in Bellefontaine. Over a span of 20 years he has grown small-town locations into a multi-million dollar company by using nontraditional marketing methods, out-of-the-box thinking and a systemic approach to operations, staffing and public relations that consistently earned over 20% in profits.

Michael’s 24+ years of pizza experience started with one of the big chains where he delivered pizza through high school and college. He earned his Applied Business degree in 1994 and launched his first pizzeria in 1997. Since then he went on to open a total of three pizzerias in Northwest Ohio. His shops covered a wide range of concepts — a del/co, carryout only, and a full-service pizzeria restaurant with 120 seats. He was runner-up for the Ohio SBA’s Small Business of the Year in 2006, Hardin County Business of the Year in 2007, and won the 20 Under 40 Entrepreneur Award in 2008. He is also certified in Neapolitan & Classic Italian Pizza Making by the International School of Pizza.

His pizzerias have won numerous awards for pizza making over the years at pizza competitions across the country.  Michael has earned eight medals from the World Pizza Championships held in Salsomaggiore, Italy, for Fastest Dough, Largest Dough, and Team Acrobatic, including three gold medals. He is the only American to ever win the Largest Dough competition at the World Pizza Championships.

Running three pizzerias over the years and being virtually self-employed his entire adult life, Michael has earned what he calls a degree in “Real Life.” He says, “When I started, there was almost no source of pizza information, no formal pizza education. Aside from trade shows like Pizza Expo and Pizza Today Magazine, 90 percent of my pizza education was self-taught.”

He built and refined his pizzeria systems from the ground up so that his business could run without him. “Every system in my pizzerias was built out of necessity and with hard work and research. From performance evaluations, employee handbooks, training manuals, and portion control systems to marketing programs — I designed them all. I wanted to run a business, not be run by my business.”

Michael is retired from operating his pizzerias but wants to share his vast knowledge of the pizza industry with operators such as yourself in hopes of helping you avoid common pitfalls and headaches that plague the industry and hopefully help you achieve profits that you never thought were possible.

Outside of pizza Michael’s time is consumed by family, running, and OCR (Obstacle Course Racing).

Siler Chapman

Siler Chapman began his college career at UNC Charlotte with his sights set on mechanical engineering. After 9/11, he realized he was needed in elsewhere. He felt that he was being called to work with family and friends while serving his community. He quit school and with the help of his family, Siler opened Si’s Pizzeria in Fort Mill, SC.

He grew Si’s Pizzeria to three locations in North and South Carolina. The pizzerias were full service with 100+ seats, delivery, and take-out. Having to build a brand from the ground up to what would become a landmark in the community was no easy task. Siler’s determination to always win was a big part of his success.

For 12 years, he worked with the young people in the community through his pizzeria and his wakeboarding and snowboarding ministry. Siler became well known in the community for throwing dough locally and nationally. In fact, he holds three world titles for acrobatics, gaining him appearances on the Food Network, the Ellen DeGeneres Show, The Steve Harvey Show and The Today Show just to name a few.

Siler is a founding member of the World Pizza Champions and an organizer of the World Pizza Games (held at the International Pizza Expo) since 2005.

Siler rolling pizza dough on his shoulder

Independent Contributors

Leeanna looking at the camera

LeeAnna Shepherd

LeeAnna worked in the pizza industry for 10 years along side her brother Michael Shepherd starting out as a pizza maker and ending as manager of his original pizzeria. Following in Michael’s footsteps she began competing in international pizza tossing competitions making her the first American woman to compete. Through her pizza career she won multiple gold and silver medals, and was the first woman to win the gold for Fastest Pizza Tosser in Las Vegas in 2008.

LeeAnna is definitely a foodie at heart and loves to make pizza for family and friends, teaching them how to hand toss dough and playing with creative toppings, one of her favorite being a smoked mozzarella and meyer lemon pizza. More recently LeeAnna has been working with Quality Improvement using principals from the Dartmouth Institute and strives to create simple problem solving spreadsheets using excel.

When she’s not working hard you can find her teaching and practicing yoga and trying to eat and drink her way around the world!

Ann Farrell

Ann Farrell lives in the Pacific Northwest in Tacoma WA. She shares ownership with her family in the 9-location chain Farrelli’s Pizza. Ann designed the processes and training that allows Farrelli’s to consistently re-create healthy PROFITABLE working environments. In 2017 Ann started Align & Unify 2 Thrive and now focuses all her energy on helping Farrelli’s and other organizations identify and grow leaders who build strong teams and get amazing results. Ann has a MA from Bastyr University in applied behavioral science with emphasis on organizational and leadership development.

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Chef smiling at the camera with his arms crossed

Will Grant

Will Grant began his career at ripe old age of eight, working the kitchen in his family’s restaurant, That’s A Some Pizza, on Bainbridge Island, Washington. By 10, he was apprenticing under several different chefs and, into his late teens, he had helped to open 5 restaurants.

As a young man, he decided to strike out on his own, leaving the family business for the east coast to gain experience running kitchens at major chains, like Red Robin, Bertucci’s, and learning alongside some of the world’s best chefs, like Wolfgang Puck.

He eventually returned to his Pacific Northwest roots and That’s A Some Pizza, but this time as owner and head chef. Wanting to make the most of the restaurant’s 120-year-old sourdough starter, he attended the International School of Pizza in San Francisco, training alongside his idol, Tony Gemignani.

When he isn’t busy running the family business, Will spends time with his wife and young daughter and makes time to travel.

TITLES:

  • Winner—2017 Caputo Cup, Non-Traditional category
  • Certified Pizzaiolo
  • World Pizza Champion Team Member

PIZZERIA

That’s A Some Pizza
488 Winslow Way East
Bainbridge Island, WA 98110

Glenn Cybulski

Glenn is an award winning executive chef with an extensive background in the restaurant industry. Has been featured in multiple culinary and restaurant industry magazines and has won 100+ awards for sauces, pizzas, pastas and breads. A certified Italian Pizzaiolo since 2009, Chef Glenn is a Restaurateur and Consultant to the Restaurant and Pizzeria industry as well as manufacturers in the Pizza and Restaurant Industry. Glenn is also a member of the World Pizza Champions pizza team.

Connect with Glenn at www.glenncybulski.com

Perfecting Pizza members get exclusive discounts to Glenn’s consulting rates. Join, log in, and check out his partner page for more details.

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