Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Restaurant Neighbor and Faces of Diversity Awards call for nominations

The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) is now accepting nominations for the two awards and will name Restaurant Neighbor and Faces of Diversity winners at a gala during the NRA’s Public Affairs Conference next April. Applications and nomination forms will be accepted online until November 18.

Restaurant Neighbor award, co-founded and sponsored by American Express, honors winners in four categories: small business, mid-size business, large business/national chain and Cornerstone Humanitarian. The award recognizes the outstanding charitable service performed by restaurant members. Each winner receives $5,000 to support their charitable giving efforts. Participating state restaurant associations select winners in their respective states who then go on to compete for the national award.

Louisiana has had two winners in recent years of the Restaurant Neighbor award--Tommy Cvitanovich of Drago's Seafood Restaurant in 2006 and Greg Reggio of Taste Buds in 2012. Cvitanovich was recognized for his efforts following Hurricane Katrina to feed relief workers in the New Orleans area. Reggio was recognized for his relief work following the tornados in Tuscaloosa and Joplin.

The Faces of Diversity award, co-founded and sponsored by PepsiCo Foodservice, recognizes three individuals as national winners. The award celebrates members of the restaurant industry who, through hard work and perseverance, have achieved the American Dream. Each winner will have a $2,500 NRAEF student scholarship presented in his or her name. Read more.

New Orleans Queen of Creole Cuisine Leah Chase was honored with the Faces of Diversity award in 2012. Her famed restaurant Dooky Chase is known the world over and was considered "neutral ground" during the Civil Rights Movement.

The Louisiana Restaurant Association encourages members to apply.

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