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James Beard Foundation’s Leadership Awards announcement

This week, the James Beard Foundation announced the recipients of its first Leadership Awards. Ten luminaries will be honored for their work in the Good Food Movement during a ceremony in New York on Oct. 12.

We salute this inaugural class of Leadership Award winners for their groundbreaking efforts to ensure that all people – and particularly vulnerable children – have access to good food.

We are particularly excited that six of the 10 Leadership Awards winners are pioneers whose work the Kellogg Foundation is currently supporting or has funded in the past. These include:

Will Allen, founder and president, Rainbow Farmer’s Cooperative and founder and CEO of Growing Power: Honored for his lifelong work as a farmer and community activist dedicated to supporting low-income and small family farmers who bring healthy, affordable food to urban areas.

Debra Eschmeyer, co-founder and program director, FoodCorps:
Honored for addressing the issues of childhood obesity and diet-related disease through school lunch programs with the National Farm to School Network and her leadership of FoodCorps’ innovative programming.

Fred Kirschenmann, distinguished fellow, Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture, Iowa State University and President of the Board of Directors, Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture: Honored for his lifelong work on sustainable food and farming systems.

First Lady Michelle Obama: Honored for launching Let’s Move!, a comprehensive initiative dedicated to solving the challenge of childhood obesity within a generation.

Janet Poppendieck, author and professor of sociology at Hunter College, City University of New York, and at the CUNY Graduate Center:
Honored for bringing issues of poverty, hunger, and food assistance to the forefront through her teachings and books, such as Sweet Charity? Emergency Food and the End of Entitlement and Free For All: Fixing School Food in America.

Alice Waters, chef, author, and the proprietor of Chez Panisse:
Honored for her pioneering use of sustainable and local ingredients in food service and for the Chez Panisse Foundation’s work in creating the Edible Schoolyard program.

The W.K. Foundation has a long history of supporting people and organizations working to improve our food system to provide healthy and affordable food to all people.

From Will Keith Kellogg’s creation of garden plots for Kellogg company employees in the Great Depression, to funding demonstration models for sustainable farming practices in the 1990s, to convening hundreds of food activists from around the country at regular Food & Community Networking meetings, the foundation has worked, and continues to work, to bring meaningful change to our food systems.

You can read more about the James Beard Foundation’s Leadership Awards at

Learn more about the Kellogg Foundation’s Food & Community Program at


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