Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality 2020

2020 Top Women Foodservice Hospitality
  • Red Gold
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  • Day & Nite
  • Inline Plastics
  • Enterprise Greece
  • DAVO Sales Tax
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  • Imperial Dade

2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

Jump to: Associations/NonprofitCatering • ChefsClubs • Corporate DiningEducationHealthcareHotels • Media/PR/AuthorsRestaurants • Vendor – Equipment & SupplyVendor – FoodVendor – ServicesWine/Beer/Spirits


As we prepare for 2020, it dawned on us that many of the significant stories shared a common theme: women in foodservice!

The City Council of New York made a move to promote and bring some sense of order to the City’s nightlife. A woman is guiding the fortunes of that office as the City selected Ariel Palitz, to be the city’s very first “Nightlife Mayor.” With the spectre of Governor Mario Cuomo threatening to ban tipping, one of the more vocal advocates against the potential move is Albany based waitress Maggie Raczynski. She emerged among the leaders of an impassioned outpouring from the restaurant industry at New York State’s labor hearings. 

  • RAK Porcelain
  • BelGioioso Burrata
  • Inline Plastics
  • Red Gold
  • Enterprise Greece
  • DAVO Sales Tax
  • Imperial Dade
  • Day & Nite

That’s a long way from 1989, when the then-upstart Women’s Foodservice Forum (WFF) conducted a survey of women in the foodservice industry, specifically asking them about professional aspirations. Not one respondent expressed desires to be CEO. And yet, the glass ceiling continued to crack this year as David Chang’s Momofuku named 29-year-old Marguerite Zabar Mariscal as CEO, after she rose through the ranks, joining as an intern in 2011.  

From the incomparable Alice Elliot of the Elliot Group who is America’s “go-to” head hunter for top restaurant executives to Brooklyn chef/owner Missy Robbins and Singer’s Morgan Tucker, women are making their mark on the restaurant and foodservice industry. 

We are convinced that the stakes have become so high with restaurant space rents fluctuating from $500 to $2K a square foot in Manhattan, that proverbial glass ceiling continues to crack. There simply isn’t any time or wiggle room to worry about gender, it is all about competence. 

Women are finding increased opportunity as ownership and management focuses on the ability to consistently create a signature customer dining experience in a Manhattan restaurant, a New Jersey corporate dining facility or a Long Island healthcare facility to deliver a world-class customer experience.With an on-going influx of technology in our industry, Grubhub took the lead in promoting the growth of women in the restaurant and foodservice industry.

In honor of Women’s History Month in March, the popular delivery service partnered with Women Chefs & Restaurateurs (WCR) to launch RestaurantHER, an effort that includes a map highlighting women-led restaurants across the United States. When users are deciding where to order food or sit down to eat, the map made it easy to support women in the industry by introducing them to nearby women-led restaurants.

That’s why once again we have dedicated this issue to profiling the impact that women have had on the Tri-State foodservice scene. They have risen to amazing heights and turned the Greater NYC Marketplace into the epicenter of the world’s restaurant and food service industry. We owe special thanks to a number of colleagues that represent many segments of the Tri-State foodservice community. They were gracious with their time to help us build this list of the “best and the brightest” women in our industry. We selected categories based on that input.

Our mission for the criteria of this list was to identify innovators within each of those major disciplines of the foodservice and hospitality industry. Women are having a major impact on the bricks and mortar design of restaurants, and the sales of equipment supplies and service. They also have major impact on what food and beverage is being served on local menus, and the management and marketing of foodservice facilities.

Our goal is to share some of their amazing stories and to make all of us realize that any goal is accomplishable with a measure of hard work and some good luck sprinkled in.

Leslie Klashman
Fred Klashman
Publishers, Total Food Service

Associations/Nonprofit: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

Jump to: TopCatering • ChefsClubs • Corporate DiningEducationHealthcareHotels • Media/PR/AuthorsRestaurants • Vendor – Equipment & SupplyVendor – FoodVendor – ServicesWine/Beer/Spirits

Antoinette Bruno    Star Chefs    Brooklyn, NY

Alison Cody    MAFSI    Atlanta, GA

Gladys DiStefano    FBAA    New York NY

Jenny Dorsey  •  Studio ATAO    New York NY

Randi Shubin Dresner    Island Harvest Food Bank    Mineola, NY

Nancy Easton  •  Wellness in the Schools • New York, NY

Elizabeth Falkner • Women Chefs & Restaurateurs, New York, NY

Elizabeth Faulkner 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

Celebrity chef and pastry pioneer Elizabeth Falkner left San Francisco and made New York her home just seven years ago. She put her mark on the restaurant scene there with Citizen Cake, Orson, and Citizen Cupcake. She frequently appears as a competitor and sometimes a judge on many of the cooking competitions on The Food Network’s “The Next Iron Chef, Super Chefs”, and “The Next Iron Chef, Redemption”, “Chopped All Stars”, “Top Chef, Canada”, “Food Network Challenge”, and Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters”, “Top Chef”, “Top Chef: Just Desserts”. In addition to recipe development and consulting, cookbook author, she is the president of Women Chefs and Restaurateurs, a trade organization that advances the voice of women across the culinary industry through education, promotion, connection and inspiration. She is also a member of City Harvest’s Food Council, a group of top chefs and culinary experts who are dedicated to spreading awareness of the organization’s mission.

Melissa Fleischut    NYSRA    Albany, NY

Sharon Franke  •  Les Dames d’Escoffier New York  •  New York, NY

Therese Gearhart  •  Women’s Foodservice Forum  •  Dallas, TX

Marilou Halvorsen    NJRHA    Trenton, NJ

Rhadia Hursey  •  New York Women’s Culinary Alliance  •  New York, NY

Saru Jayaraman    ROC    Oakland, CA

Sonali Jhurani  •  New York City Hospitality Alliance    New York, NY

Eliza Loehr  •  Food Education Fund • New York, NY

Laura Luciano  •  Slow Food East End  •  East Hampton, NY

Peggy Neu  •  Meatless Monday Campaigns  •  New York, NY

Ariel Palitz 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and HospitalityAriel Palitz  •  NYC Office of Nightlife • New York, NY

Ariel Palitz’s eyes lit up when she saw the job posting in 2017 for New York City’s new position of Nightlife Mayor. The self-described “nocturnal” dynamo has taken the City by storm as she has created and guides the Office of Nightlife. As a former nightclub and bar owner, she brings a truly unique perspective to her position. From town hall meetings in each of the boroughs to seminars at Javits trade shows, Ariel Palitz has worked non-stop to support the needs of the City’s nightlife operator and at the same time, worked closely with the communities that they call home.

Beth Shapiro    Citymeals-on-Wheels    New York, NY

Jilly Stephens    City Harvest    New York, NY

Katherine Taveras  • Food Education Fund • New York, NY

Catering: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

Jump to: TopAssociations/Nonprofit • ChefsClubs • Corporate DiningEducationHealthcareHotelsMedia/PR/AuthorsRestaurants • Vendor – Equipment & SupplyVendor – FoodVendor – ServicesWine/Beer/Spirits

Alison Awerbuch    Tappan Hill    Tarrytown, NY

Jennifer Cantin    Lessings Hospitality    Great River, NY

Rosemary Citrano Gabbe    The Fruited Plain Caterers    Parsippany, NJ

Adrienne Correale    Elegant Affairs    Glen Cove, NY

Erin Finley    Sydney’s “Taylor Made” Cuisine    Westhampton Beach, NY

Abigail Kirsch    Abigail Kirsch    Briarcliff Manor, NY

Kathy Lejarraga    artquest catering    San Diego, CA

Christine Marcus • Alchemista  •  Boston, MA / New York, NY

Christine Marcus 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

Alchemista was founded by MIT Sloan grad Christine Marcus in 2012 as a way to allow employers to remain competitive in the search and retention of top talent by providing unique food and curated brand experiences that enrich workplace culture. Alchemista serves over 35,000 meals/month with an average order size of 120 people, allowing companies to compete with the “Google-esque” perks doled out by competitors for the same talent. From the beginning, Marcus has ensured that Alchemista revolutionized the world of complicated meal delivery by offering flat-rate pricing, client attendants, hospitality-minded service, meal variety, and food service attractively presented with Alchemista’s signature style.

Liz Neumark    Great Performances    New York, NY

Chefs: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

Jump to: TopAssociations/Nonprofit • CateringClubs • Corporate DiningEducationHealthcareHotelsMedia/PR/Authors • Restaurants • Vendor – Equipment & SupplyVendor – FoodVendor – ServicesWine/Beer/Spirits

Lidia Bastianich    B&B Hospitality    New York, NY

Camille Becerra    Becerra Enterprises    New York, NY

Emma Bengtsson  •  Aquavit    New York, NY

Chrissie Bennett    Winged Foot Golf Club    Mamaroneck, NY

Victoria Blamey    Gotham Bar and Grill    New York, NY

Anna Bolz    Per Se    New York, NY

Francesca Chaney    Sol Sips    Brooklyn, NY

Esther Choi 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and HospitalityEsther Choi    Mokbar    New York, NY

Esther Choi is a chef and restaurateur whose heart beats for the Korean food she grew up cooking with her beloved family. Classically trained and a product of the NYC restaurant world, Esther’s beginnings in the culinary industry go back to when she was fourteen years old. She grew up cooking traditional Korean food with her Korean-native grandmother. She was always keenly aware of her Korean heritage. That awareness morphed into immersion when her family moved to Korea for three years, because her parents wanted to ensure that their children would cherish Korean culture. Esther enthusiastically embraced her parents’ goal – her mission today is to broaden New Yorkers’ understanding and appreciation of Korean culture through her food. Her formal training as a chef began at Institute of Culinary Education (ICE), continuing in the kitchens of ilili and La Esquina, as well as that of the Food Network.

Gillian Clark  •  Bagock Chicken & Doughnuts  •  Brooklyn, NY

Amanda Cohen    Dirt Candy    New York, NY

Jenna Cuccia  •  17 Summer Restaurant    Lodi, NJ

Dianna Daoheung    Black Seed Bagels    New York, NY

Lauren DeSteno    Marea    New York, NY

Corrie Dietrich    Oakland’s Restaurant and Marina    Hampton Bays, NY

Ariane Duarte    Ariane Kitchen & Bar    Verona, NJ

Allison Fasano    Salt and Sea Bistro    Jamesport, NY

Fany Gerson    la Newyorkina    New York, NY

Alex Guarnaschelli    Food Network    New York, NY

Gabrielle Hamilton  •  Prune    New York, NY

Emily Hyland    Emmy Squared    Brooklyn, NY

Zoe Kanan  •  Simon and the Whale, Studio  •  New York, NY

Sohui Kim    Insa    Brooklyn, NY

Gloria La Grassa    Pluckemin Inn    Bedminster, NJ

Sarabeth Levine    Sarabeth’s    New York, NY

Maria Loi    Loi Estiatorio    New York, NY

Angie Mar    The Beatrice Inn    New York, NY

Katie McAllister  •  Winged Foot Golf Club  •  Mamaroneck, NY

Mina Newman  •  Sen Sakana    New York, NY

Tracy Obolsky  •  Rockaway Beach Bakery  •  Rockaway Beach, NY

Michelle Puyane  •  Chalait    New York, NY

Alex Raij  •  El Quinto Pino/Txikito • New York, NY

Ann Redding  •  Uncle Boons    New York, NY

Missy Robbins  •  Lilia / Misi    New York, NY

Melissa Rodriguez  •  Del Posto    New York, NY

Laetitia Rouabah  •  Benoit    New York, NY

Nicole Russell  •  Last Dragon Pizza    Arverne, NY

Sicily Sewell Johnson 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and HospitalitySicily Sewell Johnson    Colors    New York, NY

Sicily Sewell Johnson is re-opening Colors on Stanton Street on the Lower East Side. The restaurant will remain a training facility such as the one opened after September 11 with the surviving Windows on the World staff, but she plans to create a more soulful and relaxing dining experience. Well known as an actress starring in One on One and How Stella Got Her Groove Back, she traded in her Hollywood digs for culinary school and new career. She was a part of the and found it was an amazing incubator that helped her build a fail-safe business. “I love the gift of hospitality and community,” she said.

Barbara Sibley  •  La Palapa Cocina Mexicana  •  New York, NY

Rita Sodi    I Sodi / Via Carota    New York, NY

Daniela Soto-Innes    Cosme    New York, NY

Naama Tamir    Lighthouse Restaurant • New York, NY

Diana Tandia    Berber Street Food    New York, NY

Christina Tosi    Milk Bar    New York, NY

Jody Williams    Buvette / Via Carota    New York, NY


Clubs: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

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Lily Braswell    Winged Foot Golf Club    Mamaroneck, NY

Lily Braswell 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

Lily Braswell is the Club House Manager for the nearly 100 year-old Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, NY, with the first round of golf played in 1923. Winged Foot has a history of hosting national championships golf and is getting set to host the U.S. Open in 2020. Lily Braswell brings her special touch to the Winged Foot club. She has been in the hospitality industry for the past 15 years. Lily moved from her native Peru to New York to attend The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park, NY. Upon graduation, Lily was hired as a Teacher’s Assistant at the Caterina Di Medici Restaurant at the CIA. Before joining Winged Food Golf Club, she learned the ins and outs of private club dynamics at the Coveleigh Club as the Food and Beverage Manager.

Dana Cancellaro  •  The Village Club of Sands Point  •  Sands Point, NY

Carolyn Kepcher  •  The Redding Country Club  •  Redding, CT

Lori Sahagian    Bronxville Field Club    Bronxville, NY

Iwona Sterk    Old Oaks Country Club    Purchase, NY

Iwona Sterk 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

Iwona Sterk has forged a reputation as one of Metro New York’s and the nation’s leading club managers. Since 2016, she has served as the General Manager of Westchester’s Old Oaks Country Club. She is recognized as a motivator and relationship-builder, with strong organization skills, great work ethic, and commitment to excellence. Prior to Old Oaks, she served as the GM at Elmwood Country Club in White Plains. Iwona Sterk has operated restaurants at the Doral Arrowwood hotel conference center, Hotel Macklowe, and Hilton International’s Vista International Hotel at the World Trade Center. Among Sterk’s innovative approaches to her jobs have been her ability to create unique solutions. She has never forgotten her roots in her native Poland. So for a number of years, she recruited staff in that country.

Davina Weinstein    The Harmonie Club    New York, NY


Corporate Dining: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

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Barbara Boden    JPMorgan Chase    New York, NY

Beth Bunster    Whitson’s    Islandia, NY

Beth Bunster 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

Beth Bunster started in accounting when Whitsons was very small, in the family-owned business that was founded in 1979 by Elmer Whitcomb. Today, as CFO, she’s proud of the very talented leaders who make Whitsons successful. Whitsons Culinary Group provides dining services to consumers and public and private organizations throughout the Northeast. Services include school nutrition, residential and healthcare dining, prepared meals, and emergency dining; ranging in scope from consulting services to complete, onsite turnkey solutions. As one of the top 20 largest dining service providers in the U.S., they lead the industry with their customized services, innovative programs, commitment to quality, focus on nutrition, local sourcing and community support.

Lisa Dimoulas    Neuberger Berman    New York, NY

Joanna Dissin    Jones Lang LaSalle    Haddon Township, NJ

Amelia Ekus    Guckenheimer    New York, NY

Amelia Ekus 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

Amelia Ekus has been surrounded by culinarians and hospitalitarians since birth! She grew up in Hatfield MA, in a house constantly hosting both social and charity dinners, filled with cookbook authors, chefs, and restaurateurs. Those influences shaped her professional view. While working as a manager at dell’anima and L’Artusi she demonstrated a vision toward philanthropic and environmentally sound practices, and created the position of Director of Community Development for the restaurant management company, Epicurean Management. Amelia also worked the service floor and managed Jonathan Waxman’s Barbuto.  Amelia’s pursuit of the creative then brought her to Twitter where she began as General Manager for Guckenheimer. She reveled in the unique opportunity to test out concepts in an environment that values innovation through experimentation. She then developed the role into Senior Food Service Director prior to taking on the role of Area Manager in the NYC Region. She is a member of the New York Women’s Culinary Alliance, the James Beard Greens and was named one of Eater’s 2017 Young Guns.

Elizabeth Franks     ACFLI    Holtsville,NY

Kelly Ann Friend    Whitsons Culinary Group    Islandia, NY

Amy Greenberg    Citibank    New York, NY

Sara Keller • Cushman & Wakefield • New York, NY

Kim Lawrence    Flik Hospitality Group    New York, NY

Ann McNally  •  Sodexo, Inc.    Brick, NJ

Carolyn Milea  •  New York University • New York, NY

Sally Saltzbart Minier    Jane Street Capital    New York, NY

Wendy Powell    Savory    New York, NY

Victoria Vega    Unidine Corp    Boston, MA

Donna Wang    FLIK Hospitality Group    Rye Brook, NY

Abby Weber    Nike    New York, NY

Emily Wunder    Eurest – Compass Group    Nutley, NJ

Pamela Zimmerman    American Express    New York, NY

Education: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

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Nicole Bonica    NYC Schools    New York, NY

Lonnie Burt    Hartford Schools    Hartford, CT

Susan Callahan  •  University of Maryland Eastern Shore  •  Rockville, MD

Vicki Dunn    Columbia University Dining    New York, NY

Karen Goodlad    NYC College of Technology    Brooklyn, NY

Nicole Langone Scarangello    NYC Dept of Education SchoolFood    New York, NY

Jennifer Martin    New York State Schools    Albany, NY

Marion Nestle    NYU    New York, NY

Peggy Policastro  •  NJ Institute for Food, Nutrition, and Health    New Brunswick, NJ

Arlene Sailhac    Foodophiles    New York, NY

Elizabeth Schaible    NYC College Of Technology    Brooklyn, NY

Elizabeth Schaible 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

Elizabeth Schaible attended University of Kentucky and possesses an undergraduate degree in business administration. She went on to obtain an additional degree in hospitality management from New York City College of Technology, and received a Masters of Science from Rochester Institute of Technology with a concentration in service management. Now known as Professor Schaible, she teaches culinary arts, purchasing, dining room management and marketing at City Tech. Schaible has an extensive background in culinary and hospitality management roles, counting her position as a private chef to the editor of Rolling Stone magazine among them. In addition, she serves on the National Advisory Board of Spoons Across America, and is a member of Les Dames d’Escoffier. Professor Schaible is the department chair of the Hospitality Management Department, and has researched topics such as the historical study of tearoom management schools in early 20th century New York City.

Gail Sharry    New Haven Schools    New Haven, CT

Jennifer Zeligson  •  Jersey City Public Schools  •  Jersey City, NJ

Healthcare: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

Jump to: TopAssociations/Nonprofit • Catering • ChefsClubs • Corporate DiningEducationHotelsMedia/PR/Authors • Restaurants • Vendor – Equipment & SupplyVendor – FoodVendor – ServicesWine/Beer/Spirits

Alba Aviles    James J Peters VA Medical Center    Bronx, NY

Judith Batashoff    Highfield Gardens Care Center    Bayside, NY

Dawn Cascio    Valley Hospital    Ridgewood, NJ

Andria Coleman    New York Presbyterian    New York, NY

Andria Coleman 2019 Top Women in Foodservice and HospitalityAndria Coleman is the Food and Nutrition Operations Manager at New York-Presbyterian Lower Manhattan Hospital.  She is a registered dietitian with knowledge and experience in both clinical nutrition and food service operations. She currently serves as the president of the New York chapter of the Association for Healthcare Foodservice (AHF-NY). With her guidance AHF-NY has expanded its platform for professionals to use for the promotion, growth and development of nutrition and food service. Her focus on AHF-NY’s chapter creates mentoring opportunities to facilitate the sharing of knowledge and experience with the next generation of healthcare foodservice professionals.

Marsha Diamond  •  Diamond Approach • Marlboro, NJ

Maura Dillon-Krug    St. Francis Hospital & The Heart Center    Mineola, NY

Heather Duffy  •  JFK Medical Center    Edison, NJ

Marvo Forde    Maimonides Medical Center    Laurelton, NY

Stephanie Giraulo    St. Charles Hospital    Port Jefferson, NY

Dr. Carol Letzter    Textured Food Innovations    Carle Place, NY

Veronica McLymont    Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center    New York, NY

Angela O’Neil  •  Hunterdon Medical Center  •  Flemington, NJ

Doris V. O’Neil    Golden Gate Rehab & Health Care Center    Trenton, NJ

Tatanisha Peets    Memorial Sloan Kettering    New York, NY

Tatanisha Peets 2019 Top Women in Foodservice and HospitalityTatanisha Peets has touched many lives. As part of the food and nutrition team at Memorial Sloan Kettering she has been essential in integrating the latest nutrition research into the patient experience.  Her team has reframed how registered dietitians coordinate with doctors that are especially specific for cancer treatment that patients are receiving. Peets’ career has included an invitation to speak at the United Nations on nutritional issues in developing nations. The Muhlenberg College graduate is also known for her expertise in Nutrition-related side effects during and after treatment and safe food handling and preparation. She also is committed to giving back to her industry with her involvement with AHF-New York. Peets chairs the organizations’ mentorship program as well.

Mimi Wang  •  VA Hospital  •  Brooklyn , NY

Hotels: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

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Laura Burton  •  JW Marriott Essex House  •  New York, NY

Angela Dimayuga    Standard International Hotel    New York, NY

Sara Nolan  •  MCR    New York, NY

Media/PR/Authors: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

Jump to: TopAssociations/Nonprofit • Catering • ChefsClubs • Corporate DiningEducationHealthcareHotelsRestaurants • Vendor – Equipment & SupplyVendor – FoodVendor – ServicesWine/Beer/Spirits

Jennifer Baum    Bullfrog & Baum    New York, NY

Shari Bayer    Bayer PR    New York, NY

Shari Bayer 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and HospitalityShari Bayer has over 25 years of experience in “the industry.” She founded Bayer Public Relations, a NYC-based culinary/hospitality PR agency, in 2003; and her podcast, All in the Industry on Heritage Radio Network, in 2014. Shari’s media/production company, All in the Industry®, is presenting H.O.S.T. SUMMIT + SOCIAL, an all-day conference for, and about, the hospitality industry (1/27/20, NYC). Shari is a past-president of the NYWCA; member of Les Dames d’Escoffier NY, and the James Beard Foundation; and inductee in Heritage Radio Network’s Hall of Fame. A Miami native, Shari earned a BA from The University of Michigan, and Culinary Certificate from the Cooking Academy of Chicago. She is a contributing writer for Fathom, and a fearless solo diner/traveler.

Francine Cohen  •    New York, NY

Diana DeLucia  •  Golf Kitchen    Stamford, CT

Kerry Diamond    Cherry Bombe    New York, NY

Linda Kavanagh    MaxEx Public Relations    Stamford, CT

Ellie Krieger    Ellie’s Real Good Food    New York, NY

Rachel Litner    Lotus 823    Eatontown, NJ

Lisa Lewin    CT Bites    New Haven, CT

Nancy Mamana    NYC & CO    New York, NY

Julia Moskin    New York Times    New York, NY

Sara Moulton    Sara’s Weeknight Meals    New York, NY

Karen Page    James Beard Award-Winning Author    New York, NY

Louise Pollock    Pollock Comunications    New York, NY

Joanna Pruess    Book Author    New York, NY

Janette Roush    NYC & CO    New York, NY

Karen Schloss    diaz • schloss communications    Montclair, NJ

Karen Stabiner    Generation Chef    New York, NY

Andrea Tencza    Clarion UX    Trumbull, CT

Regina Varolli    CulEpi    New York, NY

Holly Von Seggern    HRV Marketing & Communications    Islandia, NY

Stephanie Webster    CT Bites    Fairfield, CT

Korsha Wilson    Heritage Radio    Brooklyn, NY

Melanie Young  •  The Connected Table    New York, NY

Melanie Young 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

Melanie Young co -hosts two national radio shows: The Connected Table Live, featuring conversations with global thought leaders in wine, spirits, food and hospitality, and Fearless Fabulous You, addressing topics for and about women (both iHeart Radio). Her published articles appear in Wine4Food, The Epoch Times, Wine Enthusiast, Seven Fifty Daily, Santé Magazine and Jewish Week. For 20 years Melanie ran an eponymous culinary marketing agency, working with international wine, food and hospitality organizations, media companies and non-profits. She launched and managed New York Restaurant Week and served as director of The James Beard Foundation Awards, which she helped create. She is a member of Les Dames d’Escoffier and New York Women’s Culinary Alliance.

Restaurants: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

Jump to: TopAssociations/Nonprofit • Catering • ChefsClubs • Corporate DiningEducationHealthcareHotelsMedia/PR/Authors • Vendor – Equipment & SupplyVendor – FoodVendor – ServicesWine/Beer/Spirits

Giorgia Caporuscio    Keste Pizza    New York, NY

Elizabeth Chrystal    Momofuku Restaurant Group    New York, NY

Lena Ciardullo    Union Square Hospitality Group    New York, NY

Dawn Clark    Nordstrom    Seattle, WA

Jeanne Cretella    Landmark Hospitality    Jersey City, NJ

Georgette Farkas  • Rotisserie Georgette    New York, NY

Georgette Farkas 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and HospitalityGeorgette Farkas and Rôtisserie Georgette have been recognized with a “Restaurateur of the Year” award from the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, a Wine Spectator “Award of Excellence” and a Women Chefs & Restaurateurs “Golden Fork Award” for excellent service. She learned her trade working at some of the world’s finest hotels, restaurants and with some of the world’s great Chefs including Roger Vergé, Alain Ducasse and Daniel Boulud. She studied European history at Harvard, attended the Ecole Hôtelière de Lausanne, trained at the Hotel de Paris in Monaco, Hotel Richmond in Geneva, and Hotel de Crillon in Paris. Her first exposure to culinary communications came as assistant producer for Chef Pierre Franey’s 26-episode PBS “Cooking in France” television series. During her tenure as the Public Relations and Marketing Director for Daniel Boulud, she was one of a small group of executives who helped to extend Boulud’s Dinex Group to 14 venues.

Leslie Ferrier    Momofuku    New York, NY

Vicki Freeman    Cookshop/Rosie’s/Shuka    New York, NY

Lois Friedman    Jean Georges Restaurant Group    New York, NY

Mary Garvin    Union Square Hospitality Group    New York, NY

Cheryl Grabowski    Harvest Restaurant Group    Morris Plains, NJ

Yusi Guerrera    Citarella    New York, NY

Sueyoung Jo    Eleven Madison Park    New York, NY

Donna Lennard    il Buco    New York, NY

Lili Lynton    Dinex Group    New York, NY

Laura Maniec Fiorvanti    Corkbuzz Wine Studio • New York, NY

Marguerite Mariscal    Momofuku Restaurant Group    New York, NY

Taniedra McFadden    Sylvia’s Restaurant    New York, NY

Ivy Mix    Leyenda    Brooklyn, NY

Erin Moran    Union Square Hospitality Group    New York, NY

Mandy Oser    Ardesia Wine Bar    New York, NY

Cai Pandolfino    Green & Tonic    Greenwich, CT

Maricel Presilla    Cucharamama / Zafra    Hoboken, NJ

Jennifer Rackoff     Fourth Wall Restaurant    New York, NY

Julie Rose    Sweet Hospitality Group    New York, NY

Nicki Russ    Russ & Daughters    New York, NY

Samantha Safer    Otway    Brooklyn, NY

Gia SanAngelo    Untitled at the Whitney    New York, NY

Sarah Ashley Schiear    Sarah Ashley    New York, NY

Neesha Seervai    Apple-Metro, Inc.    Harrison, NY

Jody Storch    Peter Luger Steakhouse    Brooklyn, NY

Eden Tesfamariam    Stella Hospitality    New York, NY

Kristen Tomlan    DO    New York, NY

Jillian Vose    Dead Rabbit    New York, NY

Melba Wilson    Melba’s    New York, NY

Melba Wilson 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

On any given day, you can find Melba Wilson greeting guests with hugs, her trademark smile and inquiring of her customers as to whether there is anything she can do to enhance their dining experience. After all, dining at Melba’s is like coming home for dinner, whenever you’re away from home. She has received numerous accolades and awards for her entrepreneurship and her original and family recipes. She won on an episode of the Food Network’s Throwdown with Bobby Flay, was featured on The View, and appears regularly on television. Melba has always been about giving back. Whether it’s her local community or the restaurant industry, she unselfishly gives of her time. From the launch of the New York City Hospitality Alliance, she has been at the forefront of the association’s agenda to support the diverse needs of the industry and serves as its President.

Tren’ness Woods-Black    Sylvia’s    New York, NY

Ellen Yin    High Street on Hudson • New York, NY

Vendor – Equipment & Supply: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

Jump to: TopAssociations/Nonprofit • Catering • ChefsClubs • Corporate DiningEducationHealthcareHotelsMedia/PR/Authors • RestaurantsVendor – FoodVendor – ServicesWine/Beer/Spirits

Maja Adiletta    Arcobaleno    Lancaster, PA

Lisa Alston    Automatic Ice Maker Co.    Middlesex, NJ

Lori Balter    Balter Sales Company    New York, NY

Linda Bedell    Woodstone Ovens    New York, NY

Grace Best    Imperial Dade    Jersey City, NJ

Kim Bunn-Minsky    Pro-Tek    Plainview, NY

Pearl Fleischman    Kerekes / Bake Deco    Brooklyn, NY

Jenny Goodman    Tilit    New York, NY

Jackie Grambor    Performance  Equipment Group    Elmwood Park, NJ

Penny Hutner    Advance Tabco    Edgewood, NY

Lisa Kerester    PBAC    Eastchester, NY

Heather Kogan    The Sam Tell Companies    Farmingdale, NY

Sandra Kravetz    Performance Food Equipment Group    Elmwood Park, NJ

Kim Lehr    Performance Food Equipment Group    Elmwood Park, NJ

Michelle Luzzi  • Front of the House    New York, NY

Michelle Luzzi 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

As Northeast Regional Sales Manager, Michelle Luzzi, of Front of the House is a favorite among multiple Tri-State area and Northeast tabletop dealers. Michelle is responsible for overseeing sales initiatives for more than 2000 items. In an industry where presentation and customer service is everything, Michelle proves that she is more than capable to handle it all with her high level of professionalism and creativity that she continuously displays to dealers, chefs and hoteliers alike.

Kristine Martin    Steelite International    New York, NY

Silena Mejia    M. Tucker Company    New York, NY

Val Meslin    Gotham City Hospitality    New York,NY

Irina Mirsky-Zayas    Equipex    Providence, RI

Samantha Mullins    Waring Commercial    Stamford, CT

Meredith Reuben    EBP Supply Solutions    Milford, CT

Diane Rossi    Pro-Tek    Jericho, NY

Samantha Saltzman    The Sam Tell Companies    Farmingdale, NY

Debra Salzano    Pecinka Ferri Associates • Fairfield, NJ

Arlene Saunders    Allied Metal Spinning    Bronx, NY

Lynne Schultz    Tri-State Marketing    Ossining, NY

Arianna Staiano   Kimberly-Clark Professional    New York, NY

Alyssa Stewart    Gotham City Hospitality    New York, NY

Jennie Tannura    Gotham City Hospitality    New York, NY

Linda Tell    The Sam Tell Companies    Farmingdale, NY

Morgan Tucker    Singer Equipment Co.    New York, NY

Morgan Tucker 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

Morgan Tucker grew up in a family that built the largest foodservice distribution business on the East Coast, M. Tucker– founded by her father and grandfather. Morgan decided to carry on in the industry and established her own imprint, LMT. LMT Provisions is a thoughtfully curated brand of hospitality provisions that can be sourced through the Singer family of companies. After graduating with honors from Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration in 2007, Morgan worked for New York’s Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group and Steve Hanson’s BR Guest Restaurant Group. Morgan currently is the Director of Business Development at Singer M. Tucker, advising a wide diversity of acclaimed restaurateurs, celebrated chefs, and industry leaders across the U.S. As an expert on tabletop trends, she also writes a monthly column for Total Food Service.

Adriana Unarreal    Balter Sales Company    New York, NY

Helen Vanzo    Wholesale Food Equipment    Middletown, NY

Elizabeth Weiss    BHS/H. Weiss    Armonk, NY

Lori Weiss    BFA Food Service Equipment & Supplies    Boonton, NJ

Raquel Weiss-Fusco    elite | studio e    Farmingdale, NY

Alyssa Young    Gotham City Hospitality    New York, NY

Vendor – Food: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

Jump to: TopAssociations/Nonprofit • Catering • ChefsClubs • Corporate DiningEducationHealthcareHotelsMedia/PR/Authors • Restaurants • Vendor – Equipment & SupplyVendor – ServicesWine/Beer/Spirits

Natalia Cabrera    Khayyan Specialty Foods    West New York, NJ

Ariane Daguin    D’Artagnan    Union, NJ

Sumi DeBenedittis    PepsiCo Foodservice    Brooklyn, NY

Adrienne Diaz    Samuels and Son Seafood    New York, NY

Laura Endico-Verzello    Ace Endico    Brewster, NY

Nancy Finkelstein    Carousel Cakes    Nanuet, NY

Jocelyn Guest    J&E  Small Goods    New York, NY

Jaime Kriss    Restaurant Depot    College Point, NY

Valarie Leimer    Major Foods    Little Ferry, NJ

Clarissa Milano    PepsiCo    Purchase, NY

Fran Moreira    Restaurant Depot    College Point, NY

Erika Nakamura    J&E Small Goods    New York, NY

Brigitte Rounds 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and HospitalityBrigitte Rounds  •  Advantage Marketing  •  Hauppauge, NY

Brigitte Rounds has been a staple of the Metro New York foodservice scene for three plus decades. As a co-founder of Advantage Food Marketing, she has been a driving force with her partners, Mitchell Levine, John Williams and Ron Fast in maintaining and growing the concept of independent food brokerage. Advantage Marketing was one of the first ventures of its type in the nation, established at a time when traditional retail food brokers had secondary, smaller divisions handling the foodservice market. Rounds and her partners felt that the New York City foodservice market was ready for a dedicated manufacturer representative organization that specialized in servicing the needs and developing tastes of the metropolitan region’s highly versatile and populous market. A go-to resource for many of Metro New York’s leading distributors, Rounds’ expertise has been in assisting the food manufacturers that she represents navigate the many changes in the K-12 school food segment.

Melissa Tavss    Tipsy Scoop    New York, NY

Candy Vidovich    Pomptonian Foods    Fairfield, NJ

Allie Wainer    Sid Wainer & Son    New Bedford, MA

Erika Wasserman    Explore Cuisine    Miami, FL

Vendor – Services: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

Jump to: TopAssociations/Nonprofit • Catering • ChefsClubs • Corporate DiningEducationHealthcareHotelsMedia/PR/Authors • Restaurants • Vendor – Equipment & SupplyVendor – FoodWine/Beer/Spirits

Tara Berman  •  Tara Paige Group    New York, NY

Leah Blackman    Icrave    New York, NY

Marlisa Brown    Total Wellness    Bay Shore, NY

Alicia Cannon    AJC Design    New York, NY

Kristin Dempsey  •  Dempsey Uniform & Linen • Jessup, PA

Karen Dallago  •  Dallago Design    East Rockaway, NY

Sharon Dallago-Genden  •  Dallago Design    East Rockaway, NY

Karen DiPeri    HMG Plus    New York, NY

Karen DiPeri 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and HospitalityWhen your service pro team is literally serving the presidents of every major country in the world, you’ve got to be better than good, you’ve got to be GREAT.  That’s what Karen DiPeri, President of HMG+ instills each and every day running New York’s top hospitality staffing company.  Karen started out as a dining room waiter at the iconic Milleridge Inn and has held almost all front of the house positions. Now with over 25 years in hospitality, Karen devotes time to help promote both the hospitality and staffing industry.  She is the marketing co-chair for the Society for Hospitality and Foodservice Management (SHFM), President and a Board member of the New York Staffing Association (NYSA) and is an Alumni of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program. She has been honored as a SmartCEO New York Brava and SHFM Spirit Award Winner.

Maureen Drum    Institute Of Culinary Education    New York, NY

Alice Elliot    The Elliot Group    Tarrytown, NY

Amanda Fugazy    Ellenoff, Grossman & Schole LLP    New York, NY

Amanda Fugazy 2019 Top Women in Foodservice and HospitalityAmanda Fugazy has become a pre-eminent hospitality industry expert as she guides her firm’s Labor & Employment Law group. Fugazy is one of the most experienced practitioners in New York in the highly litigated area of wage and hour law, having litigated dozens of federal and state court cases involving claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act and the New York Labor Law. One of Fugazy’s strengths is valuing and resolving cases.  As such, Ms. Fugazy also serves as a mediator, and has successfully resolved many cases by appointment through the Federal Court for the Southern District of New York. Prior to joining EGS in 2013, she co-founded Fugazy & Rooney LLP in 2007 and was a partner at Bonnist & Cutro LLP, an associate in the New York offices of Reed Smith and Jackson Lewis, and a law clerk for the New York Hotel and Motel Trades Council.

Jennifer Geddes    Marsha Goldman Design    Rowayton, CT

Stacy Gilbert    Citrin Cooperman    New York, NY

Stephanie Goto    Stephanie Goto Design    New York, NY

Christine Gurtler    Jacobs Doland Beer    New York, NY

Amanda Halle    Harri    New York, NY

Julia Heyer    Heyer Performance Inc.    New York, NY

Jacqueline Klinger    SCG Realty    New York, NY

Karen Maier    Nutri-Serv    Burlington, NJ

Heather Maloney    Definition Design    New York, NY

Tara Mastrelli    Studio Tano    New York, NY

Kim Nathanson    The Niemitz Design Group    Boston, MA

Carolyn D. Richmond    Fox Rothschild LLP    New York, NY

Amy Russo    Toast    Montclair, NJ

Janine Sangirardi    Day & Nite/All Service    New Hyde Park, NY

Pandora Shelley    Qwick    New York, NY

Cara Siegel    HUB International    New York, NY

Cara Siegel 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

Cara Siegel currently serves as First Vice President, Communications for HUB International Limited’s Northeast Region, including 18 regional offices spanning across New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. Cara has held this most recent position since January 2019. An employee of HUB since 2002, she has extensive experience in public relations, brand awareness, social media, advertising, national trade shows/conventions, seminar/webinar planning, M&A integration, direct marketing, and much more, working to develop and implement marketing programs and serve as a strategic advisor on communications efforts throughout the territory. This includes strategic marketing programs for the region’s retail and wholesale groups including HUB Northeast and Program Brokerage Corporation. Siegel’s main focus currently is on creating and managing effective campaigns and branding strategies in the Insurance and Financial Services arena. This included the launch of a Restaurant/foodservice and hospitality industry seminar series.

Katy Sparks    Katy Sparks Culinary Consulting    New York, NY

Robin Standefer    Roman And Williams    New York, NY

Rada Tarnovsky    Letter Grade Consulting    Brooklyn, NY

Therese Virserius    Virserius Studio    New York, NY

Karena Wu    Active Care Physical Therapists    New York, NY

Wine/Beer/Spirits: 2020 Top Women in Metro New York Foodservice & Hospitality

Jump to: TopAssociations/Nonprofit • Catering • ChefsClubs • Corporate DiningEducationHealthcareHotelsMedia/PR/Authors • Restaurants • Vendor – Equipment & SupplyVendor – FoodVendor – Services

Anne Beccera    Treadwell Park    New York, NY

Natasha David    Nitecap-NYC    New York, NY

Rita Jammet    La Caravelle Champagne    New York, NY

May Matta-Aliah    In The Grape    New York, NY

Kelly O’Connor    Bâtard    New York, NY

Julie Reiner    Leyenda-Brooklyn    Brooklyn, NY

Audrey Saunders    Pegu Club- NYC    New York, NY

Lucinda Sterling  •  Middle Branch    New York, NY

Lucinda Sterling 2020 Top Women in Foodservice and Hospitality

Lucinda Sterling is an early adopter of fresh ingredients in a craft cocktail program. As the managing partner and bartender of Murray Hill’s beloved cocktail den, Middle Branch, she is frequently asked by industry professionals to share her own experiences and philosophy on drink creation. On a cross-country road trip in late 2005, the Colorado native arrived in New York City and became a regular at the speakeasy-style bar Milk & Honey. When Owner Sasha Petraske told her that several employees were leaving, Sterling joined the team even though she had no bartending experience. She trained on the job, and became inspired to hone her skills as the mixology movement took off. In 2012, bartending led to a full partnership at Middle Branch.

Anna Lisa Stockwell    Opici Family Distributing    Milford, CT

Marika Vida    Vida et Fils/Sommelier/Wine Writer    New York, NY

See the previous years’ Top Women: 2019201820172016

  • RAK Porcelain
  • Imperial Dade
  • Enterprise Greece
  • DAVO Sales Tax
  • Inline Plastics
  • Red Gold
  • Day & Nite
  • BelGioioso Burrata


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