Congratulations to our co-directors Joann Lo & Jose Oliva! On Monday October 23, 2017, Joann and Jose received the James Beard Foundation’s 2017 Leadership Award at a special dinner in New York City.
In their acceptance speech, Jose said, “Joann and I are not accepting the award for ourselves but instead this is for our member organizations and the millions of food workers around the world. They include the hard-working women and men who put the food on your table tonight and every night.”
Joann and Jose’s special guest for the evening was Elias Rojas, a member of Brandworkers who was unjustly fired by Tom Cat Bakery earlier this year (more on the campaign here). At the dinner, Elias was able to talk to two famous chefs and ask for their help.
Joann said, “It’s because of workers like Elias that the Food Chain Workers Alliance was formed in 2009. Since then, we are proud that we have accomplished so much.”
FCWA friend and ally Anna Lappé of Real Food Media presented the award to Joann and Jose. Anna herself was one of last year’s Leadership Award recipients. She said in presenting the award, “They’ve helped people understand that if you care about food transformation– fixing the environmental and public health and animal welfare consequences of our current food system—caring about justice for workers is key.”