Celebrating Women of the Restaurant and Foodservice Industry

  ·  Dawn Sweeney and Hattie Hill, Huffington Post   ·   Link to Article

The National Restaurant Association and the Women's Foodservice Forum are celebrating Women's History Month this March by recognizing the tremendous contributions women have made to our strong and vibrant industry. Women have made restaurants a vital part of the fabric of this country, and a leader in the nation's economy.

Women in the restaurant and foodservice industry have played an integral role throughout our country's history. One of our earliest restaurateurs, Christiana Campbell was a tavern-keeper in Williamsburg, Va. She opened a tavern to support herself and her two daughters after her husband died in 1752. From 1755 until the late 1770s -- over 20 years -- she ran what became one of Williamsburg's most successful businesses. The colonies' leaders used her restaurant as a meeting place prior to the American Revolution.

The granddaughter of a freed slave, Edna Lewis opened Café Nicholson on Manhattan's East Side during the 1940s. She became a local legend for her simple, Southern cooking, as well as being a female and African-American chef, a rarity at the time. Lewis, an author of three cookbooks, cooked for celebrities including Marlon Brando, Howard Hughes, Salvador Dali, Eleanor Roosevelt and Truman Capote.

Click here to read the full op-ed by Dawn Sweeney and Hattie Hill in HuffPost Women

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