Our Team

Chef Heather Nace, RD, LDN

Director of Operations & Executive Chef

Email: hnace@tulane.edu

Heather Nace is originally from Baltimore, MD, and holds a B.S. in Culinary Nutrition from Johnson & Wales University. She is currently the Treasurer of the New Orleans Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and serves on the American College of Culinary Medicine Advisory Board. As the Director of Operations for the Goldring Center for Culinary Medicine, she combines her experience of running a small business for twelve years with her culinary and nutrition knowledge. She provides leadership and execution of medical student and community programming, kitchen operations, training of students, and coordination of special events. As a registered dietitian with a culinary background, Heather hopes to inspire others to achieve good health by sharing her knowledge and passion for delicious food, practical nutrition, and home cooking.



Chef Katie Pedroza

Community Instructor / Family Programming Coordinator

Email: kpedroza@tulane.edu

Katie Pedroza, a native of Cincinnati, graduated from the University of Akron with her degree in Culinary Arts in 2001. Katie relocated to New Orleans to continue her culinary education working at renowned restaurants such as Dante’s Kitchen, Emeril’s Delmonico, MiLa and Coquette. Leaving restaurants for culinary education, she worked for Edible Schoolyard New Orleans for 5 years. At Goldring since 2015, she teaches Community and Family cooking classes, where she feels she is making an impact on the health and wellbeing of her fellow New Orleans residents.


Ronald R. Quinton, MD, FACS, FACCP, CCMS

Medical Director 

Email: ronaldquinton@gmail.com

Dr. Ron Quinton has spent the last 40 years as a Thoracic-Cardiovascular Surgeon performing all aspects of adult heart and lung surgery. He retired from active surgical practice in 2020. During his surgical career, he became interested in and focused on the role that food and lifestyle play in the cause of coronary artery disease and lung cancer and how these diseases can be prevented and treated with healthy alterations in eating and living. During the last 20 years of his career, Dr. Quinton has actively educated and encouraged his patients and others to follow a healthier way of eating and living.

Dr. Quinton is a graduate of Tulane University’s School of Medicine and now has returned to participate in the education of students, residents, and patients in healthy nutrition for disease prevention, treatment, and wellbeing.


Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP, CCMS

Senior Advisor

Email: drgourmet@culinarymedicine.org

“Eating well and eating healthy is the same thing,” says Dr. Tim Harlan, aka Dr. Gourmet, who discovered his love of food long before embarking on a successful career as a physician. By the age of 18, Harlan was managing his first restaurant and had learned cooking techniques from some of the finest chefs. He subsequently opened an intimate French bistro at age 22.

Returning to school to pursue a degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management, Dr. Harlan found his way to medicine. While completing his degree at Emory University School of Medicine, he began writing about the clear link between food and health, blending his extensive knowledge of food and nutrition with his medical expertise.