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Mark your calendars for February 16! Next up in our CookieCon 2019 Speakers Series is a live chat with CookieCon instructor and über-cookie competitor Arlene Chua of @Chua Cookie! Although a relative newbie to the cookie landscape, Arlene has already amassed an impressive track record. In under two years, Arlene placed in several cookie shows and also appeared on two Food Network Challenges! Naturally, our chat will center around how Arlene preps, competes, and handles the aftermath of said cookie competitions, but anything cookie-related makes for fair questioning!

To join the chat live on February 16, simply become a member of this site (if you aren't one already), log in, and then click here on Arlene's chat room link at the appointed time of 10 am central. If you can't make the chat, don't sweat it. You can click on that same link, and enter questions for Arlene at any time in advance of the chat. (In fact, we love advance questions; they allow us to answer questions more quickly and cover more ground in the live chat.)

'Til then, please read up on Arlene (see her bio below). Our chats are always more enriching when participants have done their homework and ask questions that get beneath the surface.

Head Shot -Arlene ChuaCroppedArlene Chua is a New York City-based cookie artist and the owner of Chua Cookie. A self-proclaimed "baking banker", Arlene juggles a full-time job as a senior analyst at a private bank on Wall Street with her passion for midnight cookie decorating. She truly is a banker by day and a baker by night!

Born in the Philippines, Arlene immigrated to America when she was just a little girl and grew up baking alongside her traditional Filipina mother. In 2016, after losing her mother to cancer, Arlene discovered her true talent in sugar artistry as she turned to cookie decorating as a therapeutic outlet for her grief. Arlene decided to immerse herself in learning all tricks of the trade and, in less than two years' time, she earned several accolades and appeared in two Food Network televised competitions: Christmas Cookie Challenge and Holiday Gingerbread Showdown. In 2017, her first full year of baking, she placed third at CookieCon, and then followed with a second place showing there in 2018. She also placed second at both SoFlo Cake & Candy Expo and the New York Cake Show.

When Arlene isn't decorating cookies, you can find her at home cuddling her two furry babies, a pit bull and Chihuahua. She also attends Shopper's Anonymous and is desperately trying to overcome her addiction to hoarding cookie cutters and collecting red-soled heels.

Photo credits: Arlene Chua

Again, Arlene's chat room is now open to receive advance questions. Just click here, and follow the instructions at the top of the chat room. This link is also the one to use if you plan to attend her live chat on February 16. We both hope to "see" you there!

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