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Industry Ink: Jordan Gifford



Jordan Gifford has the arms of a chef—complete with a set of sharp knives below one shoulder—and the tongue of a sales rep. Gifford has spent time in kitchens since he was 15, rising up the ladder to executive chef at several local spots. But things changed, the hours became grueling, there were never enough cooks in the kitchen and…he got married. “I never saw my wife,” he says. Which is why his move to Sysco has been the perfect fit for his skill set.  Plus, “now that I’m in sales, I get to cook more at home,” he says—not to mention, special occasions at work, like the late-February Sysco show. 

His most recent tattoo is a “chef pinup girl.” Drawn in the vintage Vargas pinup style, it shows a woman wearing a tiny chef’s apron and hat sitting cross-legged on a black barbecue grill, holding a meat cleaver. The colors are muted, lots of peachy skin and pale turquoise and green. 

A few years ago, he had a Day of the Dead skull tattooed on his lower arm. What attracted him to that design? “Margaritas in Mexico,” he replied, grinning. 

The prolific horror writer Stephen King’s Dark Tower series is the inspiration for a series of tattoos on Gifford’s other arm, starting with Roland the Gunslinger, who’s depicted wearing a cowboy hat and long raincoat and firing a long-barreled gun. Rolland is surrounded by large red roses which symbolize dark power. King is not only Gifford’s favorite author, he’s the only one Gifford likes to read. He appreciates all books return to his favorite character, Rolland. 

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