Announcing the JBF Impact Programs

Photo: Jeff Gurwin


The James Beard Foundation is proud to announce the launch of the JBF Impact Programs, an initiative which will enhance JBF’s work to establish a more sustainable food system through education, advocacy, and thought leadership. JBF Impact Programs will bring together chefs, farmers, and other leaders in the culinary community to address the biggest food challenges facing our society—food waste, sustainable agriculture and seafood, and beyond.


JBF Impact Programs currently include the annual JBF Food Conference, the JBF Leadership Awards, the JBF Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change, and... Read more >

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In recognition of the increased interest in all types of careers now available in the culinary arts, the James Beard Foundation is adding a new program to its existing JBF Scholarship Program. The new JBF National Scholars Program will award scholarships to 10 candidates from across the U.S. who aspire to leadership roles in food science, food studies, and business, as well as the culinary arts and hospitality.


“We’re delighted to unveil the JBF National Scholars Program, which aims to provide significant, life-changing scholarships to students from across the country, supported by donors who want to make a significant difference in the lives of these students.” said Kris Moon, vice president of the James Beard Foundation. "As today’s students... Read more >

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StarChefs Q&A: 2015 Women in Culinary Leadership Grant Recipient Delilah-Amanda Lynn


Who runs the world? Girls! And the James Beard Foundation agrees. In 2012, they launched a program to support women in culinary leadership positions and to decrease the industry's gender imbalance. The program, Women in Culinary Leadership (WICL), offers grants to women, giving them the opportunity to learn and train with some of the country's most successful culinary leaders. 


Delilah-Amanda Lynn was one of eight recipients of the WICL grant in 2015. The program landed her with Chicago restaurant behemoth Lettuce Entertain You, where she completed her program in six months before accepting a management position at the company's Japanese concept, Ramen San. WICL helped Lynn unleash the Beyoncé-esque confidence she needs to run her own restaurant one day.


You, too, can join WICL. For the... Read more >

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2016 Women in Culinary Leadership Grants Now Available


The James Beard Foundation is now accepting applications for its 2016 Women in Culinary Leadership Grant program. Women with a background in hospitality or the culinary arts are encouraged to apply for a chance to participate across fifteen six-month or seven twelve-month mentor/grantee programs with top industry leaders. The deadline to apply has been extended to February 8, 2016.


Mentorship programs are available with the following chefs and restaurateurs:


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Overheard at the 2015 JBF Food Conference

Photo by Kent Miller


This past week’s 2015 JBF Food Conference explored the future of food, from farm to kitchen to table. Experts and thought leaders from across the industry examined how the choices we make and the steps we take today will impact what we eat, drink, and grow. From chefs to farmers to even the Secretary of Agriculture, the conversation tracked the highs and lows of what the future of our fields and our plates could look like.

Here are some of the most memorable things we heard at the JBF Food Conference:

1) “It’s hip now to talk about food.” — U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, @USDA


2) ”Fear of empty stomachs leads to revolution.” — Dr. Rachel Laudan, food historian at the University of Texas: Austin, @rachellaudan ... Read more >

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Chefs Break from the Kitchen for JBF’s Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change



This fall, from September 13 through 15, more than a dozen chefs will come together at Shelburne Farms in northern Vermont for the James Beard Foundation’s eighth Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change. During the intensive three-day session chefs will hone the policy and advocacy skills they need to be effective champions for their chosen food-system causes. This Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change program is conducted in partnership with the Chef Action Network (CAN), with support from Shelburne Farms and the Osprey Foundation.

“As we embark on our eighth Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change, the Foundation is thrilled to have played a role in helping so many talented chefs put their thoughts into actions in creating a healthier, more sustainable food system,” said Kris Moon, senior director, strategy and... Read more >

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Enlightened Eaters: Candice Kumai on Clean Eating


Despite years of modeling, Candice Kumai never felt sexy until she made the decision to revamp her diet and her lifestyle. Kumai switched to “clean eating,” and hasn’t looked back since, finding satisfaction and success as a chef, wellness journalist, and cookbook author. The Top Chef  alum detailed her experiences at our recent Enlightened Eaters event, which focused on her newest cookbook, Clean Green Eats. We spoke with Kumai about the importance of family, her inspiration to eat and cook better, and whole-food diet tips for the home cook.




JBF: When did you start to focus on clean eating? 


Candice Kumai: My mom always scolded me for eating too many processed foods as a teen, and I never really got it until I started to eat clean in my mid-20s. It was the tremendous difference in how I felt that pushed me to create... Read more >

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Jonathon Sawyer, Part Two: Tuna and Trash Fish

Photo by Billy Delfs


In part two of our interview with Jonathon Sawyer (read part one here), the tireless activist and JBF Award winner explains why nobody should be eating bluefin tuna, how people can eat more sustainable seafood, and why trash fish is delicious.



JBF: You recently wrote a piece for Esquire where you state that you’ve given up tuna. Do you still cook with it for your restaurants or any other events?


Jonathon Sawyer: No, we would never do that. I can say this with a fair amount of confidence, there’s really only ever been tuna in our restaurants once, and it was maybe about three-and-a-half years ago, at Noodle Cat. A chef that was new to the company did a special with some tuna. I think that’s literally the only time it’s ever been in the... Read more >

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Jonathon Sawyer: Not a Sustainability Peer-Pressure-ist

Photo by Billy Delfs


Jonathon Sawyer is a toque of all trades. When he’s not in the kitchen at one of his five Cleveland-area hot spots, developing new varieties of his proprietary vinegars, writing a cookbook, or foraging, fermenting, and pickling at home, this year’s JBF Award winner for Best Chef: Great Lakes somehow finds the time to advocate for transparency and sustainability in the food system. In our continuing series on alumni from our JBF Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change initiative, we talked to Sawyer about opening Ohio’s first certified green restaurant, his ingredient-sourcing hierarchy, and what needs to change about the way we label our food.




JBF: You opened Ohio’s first restaurant that was certified by the Green Restaurant Association (GRA). Can you explain what some of those requirements are for that certification, and your own... Read more >

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20 Inspiring Quotes from Our 7th Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change


Last week, 15 chefs from around the country met at Glynwood, a nonprofit farm in New York’s Hudson Valley. The occasion? Our seventh JBF Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change, a program geared toward building a network of colleagues who all have a common goal: to use their voices to become effective leaders for food-system change. They had a few minutes to marvel at the bucolic setting—and their fellow Boot Campers (yes, that is Rick Bayless!)—before getting down to work. In 36 hours, they’d be heading back to their restaurants armed with tools to become compelling advocates for the issues they’re passionate about, as well as more than a dozen lifelong friends and comrades in the food revolution. Here are some of the most inspiring quotes from the retreat:


“Even though this is a competitive business, if there's something we can agree on and we know that... Read more >

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JBF Kitchen Cam