Audi and James Beard Foundation collaborate on #DriveProgress dinner series to celebrate Women's History Month

  • Audi to host four-part dinner series at James Beard House in New York City
  • Chefs from Audi-founded Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Program to curate custom five-course meals throughout March
  • #DriveProgress dinner series tickets available for purchase:

HERNDON, Va., February 25, 2019 – In celebration of Women’s History Month, Audi and the James Beard Foundation will host a four-part #DriveProgress dinner series featuring graduates of the Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership (WEL) Program, founded by Audi. The five-course chef-curated dinner series will take place throughout the month of March in New York City at the prestigious James Beard House, which serves as a “performance space” for visiting chefs.

“With less than seven percent of all head chefs being female, the culinary industry remains an important field for Audi to support,” said Loren Angelo, vice president, Marketing, Audi of America. “We continue to make strides to drive progress toward a more inclusive and equal future and are proud to partner with the James Beard Foundation year round, and particularly during Women’s History Month.”

The #DriveProgress dinner series will take place on March 6, March 14, March 21, and March 28 at the James Beard House, and will feature alumni from the WEL Program.

Participating chefs include:

  • Sarah Huck of Kos Kaffe in Brooklyn, New York; Liza Hinman of Spinster Sisters in Healdsburg, California; Fiona Lewis of District Fishwife in Washington, D.C.; Joanne Canady-Brown of The Gingered Peach in Lawrenceville, New Jersey; and Christine Cikowski of Honey Butter Fried Chicken and Sunday Dinner Club in Chicago, Illinois (March 6, 7 p.m. EST)
  • Kelly Fields of Willa Jean in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Ann Marshall of Hire Wire Distilling in Charleston, South Carolina (March 14, 7 p.m. EDT)
  • Kathleen Blake of the Rusty Spoon in Orlando, Florida (March 21, 7 p.m. EDT)
  • Amy Brandwein of Centrolina in Washington, D.C. (March 28, 7 p.m. EDT)

“Our partnership with Audi supports women business leaders across the country. We know that with the right tools and networks, and the opportunity to showcase their work, women build meaningful and successful businesses. We hope that this first of its kind series at the historic James Beard House will inspire other women to take their dreams to the next level," said Katherine Miller, vice president of Impact, James Beard Foundation.

Women’s Leadership Programs
The James Beard Foundation Women’s Leadership Programs founded by Audi provide training at multiple stages of an individual’s career. The WEL Program provides culinary entrepreneurs with tools in finance, business strategy, branding, and investment. The chefs featured in the #DriveProgress dinner series are WEL Program alumni and received one week of training on how to grow their network and business at Babson College.

In June 2018, Audi named two inaugural Audi WEL Fellows — Sandra Cordero of Gasolina Café in Los Angeles, and Esther Choi of Mokbar and Ms. Yoo in New York City. The Audi Fellowship provides additional opportunities for entrepreneurs to grow by integrating the chefs into Audi activations and experiences.

Through #DriveProgress, Audi is committed to cultivating and promoting a culture that helps enable women to achieve their highest potential by removing barriers to equity, inclusivity, growth, and development.

To purchase tickets to the #DriveProgress series, please visit: The cost for members to attend each dinner is $170, and the cost for the general public is $220.

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Audi of America, Inc. and its U.S. dealers offer a full line of German-engineered luxury vehicles. AUDI AG is among the most successful luxury automotive brands, delivering about 1.812 million vehicles globally in 2018. In the U.S., Audi of America sold nearly 224,000 vehicles in 2018. 2019 marks 50 years for the brand in the U.S. Visit or for more information regarding Audi vehicles and business topics.

The James Beard Foundation’s mission is to promote good food for good™. For more than 30 years, the James Beard Foundation has highlighted the centrality of food culture in our daily lives. Through the James Beard Awards, unique dining experiences at the James Beard House and around the country, scholarships, hands-on learning, and a variety of industry programs that educate and empower leaders in our community, the Foundation has built a platform for chefs and asserted the power of gastronomy to drive behavior, culture, and policy change around food. To that end, the Foundation has also created signature impact-oriented initiatives that include our Women’s Leadership Programs aimed at addressing the gender imbalance in the culinary industry; advocacy training through our Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change; and the James Beard Foundation Leadership Awards that shine a spotlight on successful change makers. The organization is committed to giving chefs and their colleagues a voice and the tools they need to make the world more sustainable, equitable, and delicious for everyone. For more information, please visit and follow @beardfoundation on InstagramTwitter, and Facebook.

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