Jeff Keenliside was born and raised in Canada, where is wealth of training and experience lead him to a career with Oak Bay Marine Group. As our Corporate Chef, he splits his time between working out of OBMG's head office in Victoria, visiting our British Columbia Resorts, and travelling to Cape Santa Maria Beach Resort in the Bahamas to help food and menu preparation.
Starting in 2005, Jeff began working at Oak Bay Marine Group's Marina Restaurant, where he received honours as Vancouver Island Chef of the Year and also helped his pastry team achieve top honours two years in a row at the Grand Marnier Challenge. He committed himself to the role of Vice-President of the Island Chef’s Collaborative and helped organize their first annual event, Defending Our Backyard, recognizing the importance of relationships between local producers and top local restaurants. Jeff was also asked to sit on the apprenticeship advisory board at Camosun College to help define the changing needs of this educational component for the industry.
Jeff left the Marina Restaurant in 2009 to pursue every chef’s dream of running their own establishment. Lucy’s in the Square achieved top restaurant honours by Vancouver Magazine in its first year out. While the small neighbourhood bistro only ran for two years, the insight and experience he gained as a restaurant owner was invaluable. Jeff then utilized his education and experience to start consulting in Victoria, and a couple of years later opportunity once again presented itself and he rejoined the Marina Restaurant as Executive Chef. This soon led to an even greater level of responsibility as Corporate Chef for the entire Oak Bay Marine Group of companies.
Jeff fosters company-wide apprenticeship programs, assists Resort General Managers, Executive Chefs and kitchen crews with menu development, implements current food trend ideas, and evaluates overall consistency and quality across various operations. Jeff will continue his passionate support of local products that bring freshness and uniqueness to the menus throughout the organization, and is the spokesperson for all culinary departments and restaurants at the Oak Bay Marine Group.