DALLAS - A North Texas man determined to turn his life around is finding success through his love for culinary arts.
In fact, the Oak Cliff native's journey is on a trek through Hollywood and a national network cooking show ‘Cutthroat Kitchen.’
The young man is taking full advantage of a second chance at life. He says he's decided to pursue his passion rather than prison.
The kitchen is Jason Blackwell's love. He found it after a detour through a courtroom and a fast life that landed him on the wrong side of the law.
"At the age of 21, I was looking at 5 to 99 years in the penitentiary for armed robbery with a deadly weapon,” he said. “I ended up getting a 'no bill' on the case."
After his wake-up call, Blackwell found a passion for photography and a chance to shoot a wedding in Paris. When the work was done, he ventured to Italy and his childhood love for cooking through a one-day cooking course.
Blackwell will become one of the newest contestants on the food network's Cutthroat Kitchen on Wednesday. While he can't discuss much about the TV show, he says he's happy to make his two children and his mother proud.
Blackwell already has a job offer with a Dallas restaurant when he achieves his certification. That could depend on the outcome of this newest season of Cutthroat Kitchen.