The James Beard Foundation (JBF) recently announced the recipients of the sixth annual James Beard Foundation Leadership Awards. The 2016 honorees will be recognized at the annual awards dinner on October 17 at Hearst Tower in New York City.
The honorees are Greg Asbed and Lucas Benitez, John Boyd, Jr., Anna Lappé, Jim McGovern, and Raj Patel. JBF President, Susan Ungaro said, “This year’s honorees are game-changers who have made an impact in improving childhood nutrition, fighting hunger, and promoting justice and equality in our food system.”
Instead of culinary accomplishments, the Leadership Awards recognize specific outstanding initiatives and lifetime achievement in the realms of sustainability, food access, and public health. JFB aims to bring awareness to these issues by spotlighting visionaries in these fields.
The selection criteria for this year include excellence of work, innovation in approach, and scale of impact either within a community or across the nation. Honorees were selected by previous winners.
JBF has chosen to recognize the honorees for the following reasons:
Greg Asbed and Lucas Benitez, co-founders of the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, are being recognized “for their innovative work in forging a new human rights model in the food industry supply chain.”
John Boyd, Jr, the founder and president of the National Black Farmers Association, is being recognized “for his leadership in the fight for African-American farmers’ civil rights."
Anna Lappé, the founder of the Small Planet Institute and the founder and director of Real Food Media, is being recognized “for her work as an author, educator, and sustainable food advocate.”
Congressman Jim McGovern of Massachusetts is being recognized “for his leadership as an advocate in the fight against hunger.”
Raj Patel, an author, activist, and academic, is being recognized “for his scholarship and advocacy work to change the inequalities in our world’s food system."
Previous winners have included Wendell Berry, Mark Bittman, Dr. Jason Clay, Debra Eschmeyer, Sam Kass, Fred Kirschenmann, Dr. Kathleen Merrigan, Marion Nestle, First Lady Michelle Obama, Michael Pollan, Karen Washington, Alice Waters, and more.
The JBF Leadership Awards are co-hosted by Good Housekeeping, with founding support from the GRACE Communications Foundation. The awards ceremony will take place on October 17 as part of the seventh annual JBF Food Conference in New York City. Tickets for the dinner are available for the general public, and at a reduced price for conference attendees. Registration for the conference is now open.