Top Chef judge and food celeb to help student entrepreneurs shape beneficial food enterprises.
Babson College has named Food & Wine Special Projects Director and Top Chef Judge Gail Simmons—accomplished culinary expert, food writer, and dynamic TV personality—entrepreneur in residence.
Her appointment is co-sponsored by Babson’s Center for Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership (CWEL), which provides opportunities for women to act entrepreneurially, transform their aspirations into reality, and create social and economic value for themselves and others; and the Lewis Institute for Social Innovation at Babson College, where entrepreneurs obtain the resources they need to build new businesses based on sound social, environmental, and financial values.
Simmons will work directly with CWEL and the Lewis Institute to mentor and guide Babson entrepreneurs, especially in designing strategic marketing and communications approaches to their enterprises.
“As an inspirational food communications entrepreneur, Gail Simmons will share her rich and diverse experiences with students and help them shape ventures that will impact and add value to the world,” said CWEL Director Susan Duffy.
Simmons is an active supporter of Common Threads, an organization that teaches low-income children to cook wholesome and affordable meals. She was a founding member of Food & Wine’s Grow for Good Campaign to raise funds and awareness for sustainable agriculture programs in the United States. She also sits on the boards of City Harvest, Hot Bread Kitchen, the Institute of Culinary Education’s Alumni Committee, and the Women at NBCU Advisory Board.
“Gail Simmons will be a tremendous resource for our students and faculty interested in virtually any aspect of food,” said Cheryl Kiser, executive director of the Lewis Institute for Social Innovation at Babson College. “She can bring opportunities to student entrepreneurs, offer the latest insights and thinking on food issues, and provide a wealth of knowledge to get people ready to develop food-related initiatives.”
About Gail Simmons
Gail Simmons is a trained culinary expert, food writer, and dynamic television personality. Since the show’s inception in 2006, she has lent her extensive expertise as a permanent judge on Bravo’s Emmy-winning series Top Chef. Now in its tenth successful season, Top Chef is rated the #1 food show on cable television. Gail is also host of Top Chef: Just Desserts, Bravo’s pastry-focused spin-off of the Top Chef franchise, which aired its second season in the fall of 2011.
Gail joined Food & Wine in 2004 and directs special projects for the magazine, acting as liaison between the marketing and editorial teams on magazine events and chef-related initiatives, working closely with the country’s top culinary talent. During her tenure, she has been responsible for overseeing the annual Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, America’s premier culinary event. Prior to joining Food & Wine, Gail was the special events manager for Chef Daniel Boulud’s restaurant empire.
Born and raised in Toronto, Canada, Gail moved to New York City in 1999 to attend culinary school at what is now the Institute of Culinary Education. She then trained in the kitchens of legendary Le Cirque 2000 and groundbreaking Vong restaurants, and worked for esteemed food critic Jeffrey Steingarten at Vogue. Throughout her career, Gail has contributed to several cookbooks, including It Must’ve Been Something I Ate by Steingarten, Chef Daniel Boulud: Cooking in New York City and The New American Chef, by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page. Gail’s first book, her very own memoir titled Talking With My Mouth Full, was published by Hyperion in February 2012.
In addition to her work on Top Chef, Gail makes frequent television appearances on TODAY on NBC, ABC’s Good Morning America, and Fox & Friends, among others. She has been featured in such publications as New York magazine, Travel + Leisure, GQ, People, TV Guide, US Weekly, Entertainment Weekly, Los Angeles Times, and was named the #1 Reality TV Judge in America by The New York Post. She also appears at the nation’s foremost culinary festivals, including the South Beach Wine & Food Festival, New York City Wine & Food Festival and many more. Gail can be seen in the online video series The Pantry Project on www.kitchendaily.com, where she teaches viewers new ways to cook with the staples, both familiar and unusual, in their kitchens.
Founded in 2000, the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership at Babson College (CWEL) fulfills and extends Babson’s mission by providing educational programs for students that help both women and men develop leadership skills and an entrepreneurial mindset. To ensure a world of opportunity and advancement for all, CWEL also supports and widely disseminates research into the unique skills and experiences of women entrepreneurial leaders, and advances gender equality as a growth strategy for individuals and for organizations of all sizes, everywhere in the world. CWEL online, on Twitter, and Facebook.
About the Lewis Institute
The Lewis Institute for Social Innovation is the GPS for navigating social innovation and redefining expectations for business by moving from social responsibility to social relevance. Through action research, case development, webinars, convening working sessions with business leaders, and collaborating throughout the Babson community—particularly with the Babson Social Innovation Lab—the Lewis Institute serves as an integrated, objective, and accessible resource of ideas, perspective, and practical knowledge for how to make social innovation work. Stay connected to the Lewis Institute online, on Twitter, and Facebook.
Babson College is the educator, convener, and thought leader for Entrepreneurship of All Kinds™. The College is a dynamic living and learning laboratory, where students, faculty, and staff work together to address the real-world problems of business and society—while at the same time evolving our methods and advancing our programs. We shape the leaders our world needs most: those with strong functional knowledge and the skills and vision to navigate change, accommodate ambiguity, surmount complexity, and motivate teams in a common purpose to create economic and social value. As we have for nearly a half-century, Babson continues to advance Entrepreneurial Thought and Action® as the most positive force on the planet for generating sustainable economic and social value. Babson online, on Twitter, and Facebook.
By Barbara Spies Blair |
2/19/2013 12:00 AM