Alumni Choose Kitchen Over College: Naiha Falkner ’13

Falkner posts images of her gluten-free recipes on Instagram to help promote her business. Photo Credit: Falkner

Falkner ‘13 was attending Berkeley City College in California as a political science major. She started working in kitchens during college and just got so involved in the cooking so she started working in fine dining in San Francisco. She said, “It was a lot of hard work but it was really fun.”

“We can make that better.”

She will return to college this year to get certified in holistic nutrition which will help her in the private business she is currently starting up.  Falkner’s passion for this kind of cooking goes back. I have been a vegetarian since I was 8 years old, I am really into healthy eating.”

Currently she is working in recipe development for a company called Thistle. She explains, “ I took on this job 3 years ago, and my company doesn’t use gluten, and I love using gluten. Not being able to use this ingredient made me learn about 30 other alternatives that I could work with.

“I really enjoy pushing boundaries and making combinations that people or I didn’t think would work. I love proving myself wrong.”

She just started her own company this past month, where she focuses on her private clientele and making meals for more fine dining. She considers this her greatest achievement in life.

She looks up to her dad for his work ethic, he started his own business which is what inspired Falkner to start hers. Falkner says, “I want to be like him where I am not afraid to work hard even though I am good at what I do.”

The quality she loves the most about herself is, “I am very honest and willing to put myself out there. I really enjoy being different and being myself in a way that when someone tries something I make, they know that I made it.”