Real San Antonian: Chef Milas Williams uses recipes to inspire young chefs

Chef Williams went from prison to founding a non-profit that helps San Antonio’s youth and needy families

SA Live's Jen Tobias Struski shares the story behind World LoLei Inc non-profit and the man who started it all, Chef Milas Williams

SAN ANTONIO – We are deep into the cooking season and this month we are sharing a “Real San Antonian: who uses recipes as a metaphor for life.

Chef Milas Williams started the non-profit “World Lolei Inc.” along with his brother. It stands for “loyalty over liberty equals integrity.” His outreach includes helping young chefs fulfill their culinary passions and financially assisting families in need of resources.

“Each of us is a child’s special ingredient,” Chef Milas Williams said. “We all at the right time have to be the right measurement for that child.

His love for food started early with a combination of culture: his mother from the west coast with latin influences and his father from New Orleans.

“Cooking has always been a part of my life,” Williams said.

While Chef Milas shares more about his childhood memories of cooking as positive moments, it was in his teenage years that he and his brother Dietric were arrested for aggravated robbery, sending him to prison for 15 years, but it was there that a culinary class became his salvation.

“It was a defining moment in my life. I don’t focus too much on that area in my life, but that’s what’s made me today,” Williams said.

Getting mentored by prominent chefs such as Chef Johnny Hernandez and Chef Brian West, Williams learned from the best and took their lessons to heart.

“If you capture the flavor, you capture the soul,” Williams said.

Every November they put on a Youth Empowerment Thanksgiving Dinner. The junior chefs help to cook all the food.

The program also partners with the Bexar County Juvenile Probation Department, offering a “recipe for life” 4-week course that helps teens with mentoring and self-esteem.

“I feel that we are making an impact,” Williams said. “I know that we are making an impact.”

About the Author:

Jennifer Tobias-Struski loves her hometown of San Antonio, and is proud to celebrate it every day working on SA Live. The Emmy-Award winning producer hosts the Mom-Day series, featuring fun, family-themed segments from crafting to fashion hacks every Monday.