Gail Simmons is the "Special Projects Manager" (whatever the h.ell that means) for Food & Wine. Dana Corwin is the Editor-in-Chief.
Regarding Padma, it's hard to say without knowing her background. With that being said, ANYONE can be a critic because all it takes is an opinion. It doesn't take any skill or real knowledge to do.
"Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it."
Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe