The LEE Initiative and Maker’s Mark to Honor 2020 James Beard Chef Finalists

This article was written by FSR Magazine

In response to the announcement that the James Beard Foundation would not name winners in the restaurant and chef categories for the 2020 James Beard Awards, The LEE Initiative and Maker’s Mark have announced that they will honor each of the chefs nominated in the Regional Best Chef Awards and acknowledge their achievements and roles as community leaders. Each regional best chef nominee will be offered a $3,000 grant from The LEE Initiative to be used for continuing education or relief support in each nominee’s community.

The LEE Initiative, led by Chef Edward Lee, and Maker’s Mark have been a driving force in supporting and relieving the restaurant industry during the 2020 global pandemic, providing food and resources to more than 500,000 restaurant workers in 19 cities across the U.S. 

The grants will be provided to all 88 nominees in the following categories: Rising Star Chef of the Year, Best Chef: California, Best Chef: Great Lakes, Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic, Best Chef: Midwest, Best Chef: Mountain, Best Chef: New York State, Best Chef: Northeast, Best Chef: Northwest & Pacific, Best Chef: South, Best Chef: Southeast, Best Chef: Southwest, Best Chef: Texas, Outstanding Baker, and Outstanding Pastry Chef.

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