The Culinary Institute of America's Seventh Annual Augie Awards Event Raises
Funds for CIA Student Scholarships
HYDE PARK, N.Y., April 30, 2013
HYDE PARK, N.Y., April 30, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The seventh annual
Leadership Awards—the Augies—from The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) were
held on April 25 at the Grand Hyatt in New York City to raise funds for CIA
student scholarships. Created in honor of famed French chef Auguste Escoffier,
the Augie Awards celebrate success and achievement of the foodservice
industry's best chefs, visionaries, and entrepreneurs. Augie recipients
exemplify a tradition of innovation and leadership. Augies were presented to
four individuals who exemplify, in spirit and deed, the CIA's four core value
oDaniel Humm, executive chef, Eleven Madison Park and The NoMad Hotel, New
York, NY, was honored for his dedication to professional excellence and
oClifford Pleau '81, corporate executive chef, Seasons 52, Orlando, FL,
honored for creating restaurant menus that promote health and wellness
oRick Bayless, chef/owner, Frontera Grill, Topolobampo, and Xoco, Chicago,
IL, honored for his contribution to the understanding of world cuisines
oWalter Robb, co-CEO, Whole Foods Market, Austin, TX, honored for his
commitment to sustainability and food ethics
The Grand Hyatt ballroom was filled with nearly 400 attendees—including
industry leaders such as Thomas Keller, Steve Ells, David Burke, Alex Stupak,
and Charlie Palmer. Throughout the program, videos by CIA students and the
honorees and a presentation from CIA President Dr. Tim Ryan proclaimed the
theme of the event, Food Matters. In his opening remarks, Dr. Ryan declared,
"Not only is food part of everyone's traditions and family celebrations—it is
a bridge to other cultures; it fosters understanding among the people of the
world, it nourishes the body and the soul, and it inspires innovation,
excellence, and creativity."
Each honoree had advice for the 30 CIA students who were assisting at the
celebration and the entire of the student body, many of whom followed the
program on Twitter.
oDaniel Humm discussed how he finds inspiration through the music of the
great jazz innovator, Miles Davis, and abstract expressionist artist
Willem de Kooning. Davis pushed the envelope and charted new territory
with every album, and de Kooning said, "I have to change to stay the
same," a sentiment Chef Humm has taken to heart.
oCliff Pleau told the audience that his vision for a restaurant like
Seasons 52 began early in his career, but it took nearly 20 years to come
true. He spent a lot of time practicing "culinary imagineering," and over
the years, collaboration and risk-taking became as important to his
success as his commitment to helping Americans eat more mindfully.
oRich Bayless took a different path on the way to earning his Ph.D. in
anthropological linguistics. Food was his passion. "With one bite of a
dish," says Chef Bayless, "and sometimes just a look at the dish, you can
tell you reams of things about a culture, its history, its agriculture,
and its people."
oWalter Robb quoted author and academic Wendell Berry several times in his
remarks about sustainability. He sees 100 percent transparency in the
future of food, with stores and restaurants providing complete information
about how food is grown, made, and transported.
As Dr. Ryan noted, "Each honoree was presented his Augie in the name of just
one of our thought-leadership pillars, but they are all committed to all of
the pillars. The role of today's chefs and food professionals is not only
about flavor development and pleasing customers. Chefs must be socially
responsible citizens of the world, and it is our job and our privilege at the
CIA to train them with that goal in mind."
All proceeds from the Leadership Awards dinner support CIA student
scholarships. Over $49,000 were raised through the live auction alone.
SOURCE The Culinary Institute of America
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