Kentucky man named Food Network's next big 'Star' - gets own cooking show

Jason Smith, Photographer: Food Network

Kentuckian Jason Smith, a school cafeteria manager from Carter County, beat out two other competitors Sunday night on cable TV's Food Network to win his own cooking show. Smith earned the title of Food Network's next Star, according to the network's magazine.

Smith beat out a number of challengers during the 11-week process of determining the winner.

"Gosh. For once in my life, I’m speechless. I’m very honored. I’m very humbled by being named the next Food Network Star. I’m very excited. It’s just one of those things that’s hard for me to even put into words. I feel like I have made an accomplishment beyond accomplishments that I’ve ever set for myself. Or it still hasn’t sunk in. I don’t know what to say," Smith told Food Network Star.

The Courier-Journal reported last week: "If the Kentucky cook from Carter County wins, he won't be the first from the Commonwealth to be awarded a Food Network gig.

"Louisville chef Damaris Phillips started her celebrity chef career after winning Season 9 of "Food Network Stars." Phillips became the host of the Food Network show "Southern at Heart" and has stayed busy ever since."

During Sunday night's show announcing the winner, Smith credited his mother, a Laurel County resident, for his success.

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