In the fight against anti-Semitism, the role of family is incredibly important, and the American Jewish Committee (AJC) recognizes this significance. Family provides a strong foundation of support, understanding, and love, which is crucial when combating hatred and discrimination.
With that in mind, it will truly be a family affair as the AJC’s Food Service & Hospitality Division chapter’s upcoming gala is slated for Wednesday, November 29th at 6pm at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx. The gathering will honor industry leaders whose dedication, innovation, and commitment to excellence have made a significant impact on the foodservice industry.
The 2023 edition will truly be a family affair as Imperial Dade’s Chris Freeman will be joined by the father and daughter team of The Sam Tell Company’s Dan and Samantha Saltzman, and the Stanpac brother duo Matthew and Andrew Witt.
By fostering strong familial bonds, the AJC ensures that individuals have a safe space to discuss their experiences, concerns, and fears related to anti-Semitism. Families can also play a vital role in educating younger generations about their Jewish heritage, instilling a sense of pride and resilience in the face of adversity. Through their work, the AJC emphasizes the importance of family in creating a united front against anti-Semitism, promoting understanding and acceptance within our communities.
Chris Freeman will be presented with the AJC Visionary Leadership Award; Dan Saltzman, the AJC Lifetime of Leadership Award; Samantha Saltzman, the AJC Rising Star Young Leadership Award; and Stanpac’s Witt Brothers, the AJC Corporate Leadership and Innovation Award.
Freeman is a long-time sales and marketing executive at Imperial Dade. Founded in 1935 and based in Jersey City, NJ, Imperial Dade is a leading independently owned and operated distributor of foodservice packaging, facilities maintenance supplies, floor equipment, and industrial packaging serving North America, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean.
“I was absolutely flabbergasted, when I got the invite to be an honoree,” Freeman noted. “The AJC has such clear goals based on communicating such an important message. It’s such a privilege to be recognized and part of such an important cause.”
Since 1956, The Sam Tell Companies have offered quality solutions to the restaurant and foodservice industry. Their experienced contract design and build team execute projects nationwide. “In the world today, we need more people out there who will stand up for humanity, for love, and for our family as connected Jewish people,” Samantha Saltzman noted. “The AJC Gala provides us with an opportunity to bring a deeper awareness to our industry that we continue to fight for our freedom and independence every day.”
The Witt brothers guide the fortunes of New Jersey based Stanpac. The firm is a leading manufacturer of paper food containers and lids.
“We were surprised and honored that a colleague would consider nominating us,” Andrew Witt explained. “It is nice that our commitment to inclusivity is noticed in the industry,” Matthew Witt added. “We work to find the best people to work alongside us in the business. The best people are men and women from all corners of the Earth.”
Among the highlights of the evening will be a special address by Laura Epstein. The Vice President of AJC Access NY will speak about “The Hidden Meaning and Immense Power of Mutual Respect.” At this time of polarization and crisis, the on-going fight against antisemitism and hate in its many forms, and defending democratic values for all, Epstein’s vision is highly anticipated.
A premier industry event, AJC’s Food Service & Hospitality Division Dinner draws nearly 400 industry professionals every year for an evening of celebration, camaraderie, and tribute. For many, it’s been a must-attend event for decades.