Trevor Richen grew up in Portland in the food world. His great grandfather owned Griffin’s, a 1970s “cafeteria” in downtown Portland, where his parents and extended family worked before Trevor was born. The prep cook/dietary aide considers himself a foodie.
“I like everything,” said Trevor, wearing one of his stylin’ baseball hats and duds after a shift. “I’m a sucker for pizza, but I also love branching out. I love Mexican food, Thai, Chinese. And I like to cook.”
Trevor even took a 16-week culinary class, which brought him to Cedar Sinai Park in December of 2021.
“My culinary class was led by Chef Jon who used to work here, and he recommended I apply for a job. I already lived here [at Kehillah] and he put in a good word for me with Andy [Staggs, culinary services director].
“Andy contacted me and scheduled an interview, which was literally right after I graduated from the class.
“I love it here,” said Trevor. “It’s the best decision I ever made. And the second-best decision was living at Kehillah.
“I love being around the people, coworkers, and the residents. I think being amongst a community that’s full of good vibes and love is really big. It makes things easy.
“And my parents can tell I’m happy, and they are truly indebted to this place.”
Trevor grew up in Portland and attended Madison and Wilson (now Ida B. Wells) High Schools, the latter of which was a family tradition (his grandfather was in the first Wilson graduating class). He moved into Kehillah when it opened 10 years ago for adults with developmental disabilities. Located on the Cedar Sinai Park campus, Kehillah supports resident inclusion within the community through social activities and employment assistance.
Previous to Cedar Sinai Park, Trevor worked as a dishwasher at St. Honore Bakery, and had to get up at 5 a.m. to take the bus to Northwest Portland. Covid closed St. Honore, and Trevor was out of work for a few months, then returned to St. Honore from May to August 2021, until he began his culinary course.
“I like that I can walk now literally straight up the hill, and don’t have to take the bus to work,” said Trevor.
Trevor’s favorite part of Cedar Sinai Park?
“I like working with people and getting to know everybody. Seeing everyone smiling because of the food we make is great. And I really like the vibe here; everybody’s just really, really nice and is in good spirits.
“Everybody’s always good to me. I can’t really pinpoint one thing. This place is really amazing for me. I love working here. I think my parents can see that I’m happy, and working in a place that I love.”
Trevor typically works Thursday through Monday. During the recent snowstorm, he had no trouble getting to work so he picked up extra shifts and hours for colleagues who could not make it in.
In his off time, Trevor loves to write and paint and listen to music such as classic rock, reggae, or hip hop. He is an avid exerciser and goes to the Jewish Community Center to lift weights and shoot baskets. He loves to talk hockey!
What’s the best meal on campus?
“I really like when we do the spaghetti with meat sauce,” said Trevor. “I’m a sucker for meat sauce.”
Trevor is a favorite on campus if you want a hug or a good listening ear.
“All of the people here are really cordial and sweet,” he said. “I enjoy it here. It’s probably one of the best places to work.”
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