Meet the Team
Chef Brandon Bailey, Lakeland BBQ Company
As a young chef, Brandon Bailey, entering his 4th year of the Top Chef of Polk County event, aims to set the bar even higher. “Competing is a natural way of bringing the best out in someone and pushing the limits to do so.” From the moment he stepped foot into the culinary world, Brandon knew this was his passion. What he didn’t realize was that the ingredients were only part of the bigger picture. After working in just about every style kitchen this young chef is aspiring to follow his dream to open his own kitchen one day. For now, he is just focused on his small business and learning the BBQ industry from one of the great local talents, Joel Vann at Lakeland BBQ Co. Using his culinary platform, Brandon has been a part of raising over $500,000 for the kids at the Achievement Academy and looks to add to that number this year. His son “Jax” is in his 2nd year at the Achievement Academy and couldn’t be any happier. He sees the benefits of fundraisers like this every single day. Finding so much joy in giving back to the community, Brandon aims to win his 2nd Top Chef of Polk County accolade this year. More importantly however, he wants to break the ongoing record for funds raised this year for the school, setting the bar at a whopping $250,000.
Caitlyn Salters, Exxact Transport
Caitlyn is a Florida native, having been born in Jacksonville and raised in Polk County. She traveled around the world with the Army as a Medic after graduating from Lake Gibson in 2012 and eventually settled in Auburndale. Caitlyn has been with Exxact Transport since 2018, currently serving as a Certified Safety Supervisor, ensuring the safe operation of the semis that are such a huge part of the supply chain fueling Americas needs every day.
Exxact Transport is a family owned and operated trucking company, founded in Lakeland in 1986. Exxact participates in community outreach events each year such as a canned food drive, breast cancer awareness events, Wreaths across America to honor veterans, and more, so this opportunity was right up their alley. To be a part of Achievement Academy’s event is an honor, they are creating a foundation for the children, and we are excited to help support it!
Exxact loves to give back to the community that helped make us the company that we are today! We are thrilled to be partnered with 2020 Top Chef of Polk County, Brandon Bailey of Lakeland BBQ Company, and we cannot wait to see what he has in store for you this year!
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