Venecia Willis

Director of Culinary

Velvet Taco

Chef Venecia Willis is the Director of Culinary at Velvet Taco, a restaurant committed to inspiring its team and guests to ‘resist the ordinary’ with chef-driven, internationally inspired tacos, and one of the hottest fast-casual brands in the industry.

A restaurant industry veteran with more than 15 years of experience, Chef Willis has led menu strategy and culinary innovation for industry-leading restaurants such as Protein Bar & Kitchen (2017 - 2020), Roti Modern Mediterranean 2009 - 2017, 2020 - 2021).

Prior to joining Velvet Taco in 2021, Willis served as Director of Culinary at Roti Modern Mediterranean and Senior Culinary Operations Manager for Protein Bar & Kitchen. Before joining Protein Bar in November of 2017, Chef Willis spent her early culinary years overseeing the culinary department at Roti Modern Mediterranean for 8 years. The classically-trained, Dallas-based chef formerly of Chicago now heads up the culinary development for Velvet Taco, curating new relentlessly innovative menu items, standardizing culinary techniques, and implementing new cooking methods among other responsibilities.

Other achievements and awards include being recognized as a Young Leader to Watch by QSR Magazine in 2020.