Women Leaders in
Food, Fine Beverage & Hospitality

Dames In the News

Beth Allen

 Did you know that NY Dame Beth Allen—a past president of Les Dames d’Escoffier and our New York Chapter—has created over 20 illustrated cookbooks for major publishers? Recognized for producing well-researched, top-quality cookbook content, with reliable recipes and beautiful imagery, some of Beth’s published works are Junior's Cheesecake Cookbook (The Taunton Press, Inc.), Welcome to Junior's! (William Morrow), Perfect Pies (Reader's Digest Books), and Down Home Cooking (Reader's Digest Books).Years of working with top food and publishing brands helped Beth to develop a sharp eye for spotting industry trends.Read what the future holds for food in her Chef’s Magazine Industry Voices article,"As the World Changes,Food Matters More Than Ever"


Lidia Bastianich

NY Dame Lidia Bastianich is as warm and engaging as she is successful. She is the chef/owner of Felidia, Becco, Esca and Del Posto, part owner of Eataly, founder and president of Tavola Productions, and creator of a line of pastas and sauces. It goes without saying that Lidia is also one of the best-loved chefs on TV and has written over 8 cookbooks that speak to her two passions: family and food. Lidia sat down with the editor in chief of Opera News to chat about how classical music and opera has inspired her in life and cooking. Read on.. 


Shari Bayer

NY Dame Shari Bayer has 25 years of experience in the food, beverage and hospitality industry, from Charlie Trotter’s to Food Arts. She founded Bayer Public Relations with the vision of generating quality publicity for quality products, particularly about food as it relates to restaurants. Since 2003, Shari’s agency has represented an array of restaurants, chefs and culinary events. Shari shares the highlights and challenges of being your own boss, and how life experiences shaped her career path in this Huffington Post UK Women in Business Article. 


JoAnne Cloughly

Baking French baguettes with Aunt Jeanette was the start of Dame JoAnne Cloughly’s career as an executive certified pastry chef. Now JoAnne shares her knowledge with students, as the chair of SUNY Cobleskill’s Agricultural Business and Food Management Program. They are immersed in a hands-on complete farm-to-table experience, including a New York Farm Day in Washington DC, where farmers and producers meet politicians and lobbyists over a tastings reception created by JoAnne. JoAnne’s enthusiasm is evident when she talks about teaching the students. Her favorite motto is “Mistakes won’t kill you, they’re just opportunities for improvement!” Read about JoAnne’s fascinating work in Edible Capital District. 


Amanda Cohen

Expect the unexpected from NY Dame Amanda Cohen. Walk into Dirt Candy, her award-winning “no-tipping” restaurant on NYC’s Lower East Side, and discover inspiring veggie-centric cooking like none other. Such as her spin on foie gras: delicious portobello mousse. It’s no wonder that Dirt Candy became the first vegetarian restaurant to receive two stars from the New York Times and has earned Michelin stars five years in a row. Amanda, the first vegetarian chef to compete on Iron Chef, constantly inspires us to eat more vegetables, as in her New York Timesarticle: “Winter Tomatoes are Deliciously Out of Season.” read more...


Joan Coukos

NY Dame Joan Coukous always had a keen interest in fine foods, with a passion for chocolates. During her 20+ year career in finance, Joan collected antique molds while traveling the globe, dabbling in chocolate making and sharing her confections with colleagues. It wasn’t until a major shift in the finance industry—which eventually led to lay-offs—that Joan saw her true path clearly: to create a beautiful brand of gourmet chocolates. Read more about Joan’s gutsy transition from successful banker to talented chocolatier and owner of the award-winning Chocolat Moderne New York in SELF. 


Ariane Daguin

NY Dame Ariane Daguin was at the vanguard of the farm-to-table movement when she co-founded D'Artagnan in 1985 to become the only purveyor of game and foie gras in the US at that time. Today D'Artagnan is the renowned gourmet food source for "all things rich and meaty." Her philosophy is a passionate commitment to quality from farm to fork. In 2015 Ariane was named one of Best 50 Women in Business 2015 by NJBIZ. D'Artagnan is still on the move to even greater heights, as cited in the New York Times: Truffles Travel Well for D'Artagnan! 


Sharon Franke

 NY Dame Sharon Franke has been with the Good Housekeeping Institute since 1987, when she was hired as an assistant to develop microwave recipes. Fast-forward to 2016, where Sharon—as Director of the Kitchen Appliances and Technology Lab—tests every piece of cooking equipment that finds its way into our kitchens. Her best piece of equipment advice is to “keep your knives sharp.” Makes perfect, practical sense coming from someone who started as a restaurant chef in the World Trade Center. We’re not the only ones who think Sharon has a cool food job; Thrillist considers it to be one of nineteen insanely cool food dream jobs! Read more HERE..


Lynn Fredericks

NY Dame Lynn Fredericks is on a mission: To bring people of all ages together around delicious, affordable fresh food while positively impacting their health and well-being. For over 29 years, FamilyCook programs have reached over 200,000 families nationwide, providing evidence-based programs and training in order to embed nutrition education through hands-on cooking in schools, community organizations, and on farms. As per her tag line, Lynn is “stirring up change in a community near you.” New York Times writer Jane Brody interviewed Lynn for her Personal Health column. Be inspired… read how Lynn is Bringing Out the Chef in Children. 


Karen Goodlad

You won't want to miss this episode of Inside Julia’s Kitchen. Host Todd Schulkin speaks with Dame Karen Goodlad from the New York City College of Technology (City Tech) News Wine Blending Project, supported by the Foundation. They discuss the collaboration between a New York City winery and a technical college and how it helps switch students on to exploring the wine industry. On Heritage Radio Network: https://bit.ly/2HX9rxX


Rita Jammet

NY Dame Rita Jammet is a shining example of a big success story, in fact several success stories! She and husband André were co-owners of La Caravelle, one of New York's venerable restaurants that offered elegant French cuisine in a Paris-in-Manhattan-type experience for over forty years. In 2004, the restaurant closed. What was next? To keep the La Caravelle brand alive, the Jammets expanded and developed La Caravelle Champagne, which was first launched in 1997, into a full-time business, taking this opportunity to create another success. Their family story continues... 


Rhonda Kave

Entrepreneur and owner of Roni-Sue’s Chocolates, NY Dame Rhonda Kave has been passionate about chocolate for 25 years, learning the craft through courses at the New School, Peter Kump (now Institute of Culinary Education), and intensive workshops with master chocolatier/teacher Jean-Pierre Wybauw. Rhonda spends a great deal of time in Belize, working with farmers who grow the cacao beans for her chocolate. In addition to offering candy and truffle making classes, Rhonda enjoys sharing her “bean to bar biz” knowledge with students at PS77, in Queens, through STEM, a interdisciplinary curriculum used to encourage more interest in science, technology, engineering and math. Read more HERE.. 


Ellie Krieger

Host of Food Network’s hit show “Healthy Appetite,” in addition to a new public television series, "Ellie's Real Good Food," to debut in May, NY Dame Ellie Krieger is an award-winning cookbook author and registered dietitian nutritionist. Ellie’s success can be attributed to her warmth and practical no-nonsense advice on eating healthfully and deliciously. A columnist for The Washington Post, Ellie played a role in First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign, heading up a "Taste The Rainbow" interactive demo at the “Healthy Kids Fair" at the White House. Ellie’s spring pizza is a perfect example of keeping health in perspective without compromising taste. Recipe HERE. 


Alexandra Ellen Leaf

Author, lecturer and culinary historian, NY Dame Alexandra Ellen Leaf is a well-respected figure in New York food circles. Drawn to subjects that range from contemporary wedding cake trends to wine and chocolate pairings, Alexandra has crisscrossed the globe, guest lecturing at many fine arts institutions. Alexandra is also one of the nation’s foremost chocolate experts and leads tours in NYC, writes about chocolate, conducts tasting classes, and is a grand jury judge for the International Chocolate Awards. Read her current article on how the appreciation for fine chocolate is fueling its continued market growth in Chef Magazine.


Pascaline Lepeltier

Master Sommelier, Dame Pascaline Lepeltier, first studied philosophy before deciding to train as a sommelier. After working in New York for almost ten years, she has achieved the groundbreaking accomplishment of becoming the first female sommelier “Un des Meilleurs Ouvriers de France (Best Craftsmen of France, M.O.F. for short) and Best Sommelier de France at Union de la Sommellerie”, two of the highest French awards in the field. Pascaline is currently a managing partner at Racines NY, one of the top wine destinations in the U.S. When she is not giving recommendations to diners at Racines, Pascaline teaches sommellerie and wine waiting to the restaurant staff and students from the International Culinary Center, a prestigious cooking school in Manhattan. Read more about Pascaline's recent achievements HERE


Maria Loi

Dame Maria Loi is a Greek farm girl. She learned at an early age the value of family, and how to make food that is good for the body as it is for the soul. She has devoted her life to healthy Greek food, and building a strong family team at her restaurant Loi Estiatorio, on Manhattan’s Billionaire’s Row. The official Global Ambassador of Greek Gastronomy for the Hellenic Chef’s Association, Maria is also an author and producer of yogurt and honey lines, plus new Loi Dips, recently launched at Whole Foods Markets to great success. Maria’s passion for living healthy by eating fresh and delicious food is apparent in this lively Total Foodservice interview. Read it here. 


Roberta Morrell

During an interview with Wall Street Journal writer Lettie Teague, NY Dame Roberta Morrell states: “I have a great life.” And no wonder! Her life has centered around being the Matriarch of the Morrell Company, including the retail shop and wine bar in the famed NYC’s Rockefeller Center, for years. Roberta joined the family business forty years ago, when it was one of the two wine shops catering to the Carriage Trade. Fast-forwarding a few decades later, the NYC wine world has expanded — and Roberta is still front and center of it all! Read Lettie’s article — Meet Roberta Morrell 


Aileen Robbins

Before opening The Dunn/Robbins Group in 1994 with Brian Dunn, Dame Aileen Robbins served as Management Supervisor at Beisler/TBWA, working on accounts ranging from Evian and Absolut Vodka to Wines of Spain. For the ten years previous, she worked as Director of Communications for Campari USA, and before that, ran her own company, AR Associates. One of Aileen’s many talents—which includes being a professional opera singer in NY for several years—and great passion, is writing, with published cookbooks and many journalistic food and wine columns. How wonderful that she recently penned a piece on Les Dames d’Escoffier International for Cheese Connoisseur. Read the full article HERE 


Barbara Sibley

Chef Barbara Sibley is owner of NYC's beloved restaurant La Palapa, and the inspiration behind the award-winning Holiday Cocktail Lounge. She is an artist, poet, and cookbook author to boot! Barbara and her sister, poet Jennifer Clement, are the visionaries behind the San Miguel (de Allende) Poetry Week. An active, hands-on Dame, Barbara is also the executive chef for SHARE's fund-raising gala, featuring the city's best female chefs in one of the most delicious food events of the year. Give a listen to Dame Rozanne Gold’s OneWomanKitchen podcast interview with Barbara as they talk about food, place, memory and Barbara's infectious love of Mexico. Listen here: https://bit.ly/2lS2AN4


Liz Young

NY Dame Liz Young has worn many interesting hats in the food and beverage fields, from restaurant business owner, to a current position as managing editor of Topics in Clinical Nutrition. Since 2003, Liz has specialized in creating unique, customized food and culture tours—a licensed NYC sightseeing guide—for both corporate and leisure groups. Her company, Culinary and City Tours, offers many exciting walking tours to be enjoyed throughout Manhattan and its equally fascinating outer boroughs. Read how Liz fuses the world’s greatest city's culinary styles with its amazing history and unique energy in this Washington Square Hotel article,“Eat, Walk, Love!” 

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