Commandant's Chef Fired after Sexist Comments on Reality Show: Report

  • Marine Sgt. Frank Cala was fired as executive chef for the commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen. Robert Neller, following disparaging remarks he made about women on the FOX television show, “Hell’s Kitchen.” (Photo: Hell’s Kitchen)
    Marine Sgt. Frank Cala was fired as executive chef for the commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen. Robert Neller, following disparaging remarks he made about women on the FOX television show, “Hell’s Kitchen.” (Photo: Hell’s Kitchen)
  • Mark Allison, the dean of culinary arts for Johnson and Wales University, with Lance Cpl. Charmaine Jackson and Cpl. Frank Cala after they won the third quarter Culinary Team of the Quarter, Oct. 18, 2011. (U.S. Marine Corps/Cpl. Damany S. Coleman)
    Mark Allison, the dean of culinary arts for Johnson and Wales University, with Lance Cpl. Charmaine Jackson and Cpl. Frank Cala after they won the third quarter Culinary Team of the Quarter, Oct. 18, 2011. (U.S. Marine Corps/Cpl. Damany S. Coleman)

The Marine sergeant who made sexist comments about women on the reality television show "Hell's Kitchen" has been fired from his position as a chef to the commandant, according to a news report.

Sgt. Frank Cala had apologized for the remarks, but that apparently wasn't enough for the Marine Corps.

Capt. Diann Rosenfeld, of Marine Barracks Washington, D.C., on Wednesday said, "Sgt. Cala was removed from the commandant's staff and reassigned to the Marine Enlisted Aide Program," according to an article by Jeff Schogol, a reporter at Marine Corps Times.

Calls to Rosenfeld on Wednesday evening weren't immediately returned.

Cala was serving as executive chef at the Home of the Commandants when he appeared on the April 1 broadcast of Fox's reality TV cooking competition. After he was kicked out of the contest, he made a confessional interview as he left the set.

"The blue team never had any drama until the females came aboard," Cala said. "That's when the ship sunk. And that's exactly why I get [bleeped] female Marines and I send them back wherever [bleeped] they came from."

The remarks sparked a furor online, where the video was posted to a Facebook page called, "End Gender Bias in the Military," as an example of a broader culture of sexism.

The Corps quickly distanced itself from the comments.

A spokesman for Marine for Recruiting Station Baltimore condemned the remarks in his own post online. Officials at Headquarters Marine Corps also responded, saying they were looking into the matter in a post on its official Twitter page.

For his part, Cala apologized for the incident.

In a 14-second apology in a YouTube video on Tuesday, Cala said, "I want to apologize for my comments made shortly after my elimination from ‘Hell's Kitchen' on Friday night," he said in the clip, which was posted by Lt. Col. Eric Dent, a public affairs officer for Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Robert Neller.

"I have nothing but the utmost respect for my fellow Marines, regardless of gender, and I want to apologize from the bottom of my heart to everyone I've disappointed," Cala added.

The incident comes at a time when the U.S. military is opening more combat jobs to women.

The Marine Corps, which was initially more resistant to the idea than any of the other services, is now carrying out the directive from Defense Secretary Ashton Carter and has begun accepting applicants to a number of areas, including U.S. Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command, or MARSOC.

-- Hope Hodge Seck contributed to this report.

-- Brendan McGarry can be reached at brendan.mcgarry@military.com. Follow him on Twitter at @Brendan_McGarry.

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