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The Full Story                       

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I am a proud #justakidfromAkron, Ohio, and the second oldest grandchild of C.W. and Marian Smith, my maternal grandparents. My parents, Raymond and Deborah Grimes, have been married over 50 years.


Together with my younger sister Dana and her family in GA, we collectively refer to ourselves and my mom’s sister’s family, as Granny Smith’s Apples.

I am a senior associate vice president for operation and strategic initiatives at Syracuse University and was recently awarded the Chancellor’s Medal for leadership during the pandemic. Prior to Syracuse University, I held several leadership positions in law, human resources and operations spanning public, private, and non-profit agencies.

I’ve been active in my community through service in over 30 non-profit boards, committees, and affiliations and am an active, Diamond Life Member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. I received my Juris Doctorate and Master of Science in Social Administration from Case Western Reserve University and my Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from the University of Michigan.

I cannot wait to share my grandma's recipes with the world. While I am working on the first cookbook, I am also working on additional Granny Smith’s Apples merchandise and helping others capture their family’s recipes.

My husband Peter, and puppy Peanut, are a big help to me!

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The Secret Ingredient

Of all the things that grandmother’s give like unconditional love, guidance, fun, stories, gifts, safety from punishments and more, my grandmother gave a double portion. It is difficult to count the ways that I am like her; the way I eat, my eyes, my tastes, and the way I cook.


At my grandparents' house, you could usually have whatever you wanted for breakfast and lunch. From homemade waffles to special ice cream floats, grandma would do anything. She even made an event out of heating up canned chicken noodle soup if that’s what I wanted.


One of my earliest memories is standing in a chair helping her pour and stir in ingredients. My grandpa was a master on the grill, and both of my parents showed me how to cook day-to-day meals and special holiday items too.

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