Nikki Shaw

Where are you living/working now?

We're still living in L.A. during basketball season, and in Oakland during the summer months.

What have you been up to since FNS?

My radio segment, Today's Flavor, is still going strong on two San Francisco and New York stations. I'm now airing on Jamie Foxx's Sirius satellite radio channel 106, The Foxxhole. My segments run twice daily, 12 and 6 p.m. ET. I'm still working for Kraft Foods, demonstrating recipes on their website. I also enjoy being a food writer for www.momlogic.com.

I'm still working with the L.A. Lakers, visiting schools and teaching kids how to make healthy food choices. I work with the American Diabetes Association, demonstrating healthy recipes for diabetic children and adults. I get to travel a little bit because people all over contact me to perform cooking demonstrations and keynote speaking engagements.

What did you enjoy most about being on FNS?

For me, Food Network opened the door between my passion and the world. It gave me a push into food TV.

Do you still keep in touch with other contestants?
I run into Vivien every blue moon at church or at the grocery store. I really miss Rory and Tommy.

Any behind-the-scenes happenings from FNS you can tell us?

Oh, yeah, I could write a book. But I won't.

How did being on FNS affect your culinary career?

It definitely gave me more credibility. I noticed people were hiring me to be part of the entertainment. Every time I catered an event, the client would invite me out of the kitchen to "say a few words" to their guests. Then they wanted me to hang out and mingle with the crowd.

What advice would you offer the next round of contestants?

Leave your feelings at home. You better have thick skin. Oh, yeah, the more drama the better.

Are you recognized from your time on FNS?

Wow! I never knew there were so many FNS fans. People stop me all the time to say hi.

What was the greatest lesson you learned from your time on FNS?

I learned that anything is possible. When one door closes, another one opens.