Thanks to Dorothy and Taylor, the girls of Good Food Jobs (a website for foodies, chefs, nutritionists, you-name-it, to obtain a job in the culinary industry no matter how small or big)… I found out about the Just Food Conference Event in NYC before I arrived in the states.
Eager to participate, I charged the admission fee to my credit card for the 2-Day Just Food Conference & the Good Food Jobs Job Fair (umm yeah, I will need money to support my food habit) before the entire event sold out.
So on the day of the event, I woke up bright & early, hopped on the bus and walked to the Food & Finance High School at 525 West 50th Street, New York, NY.
Side Note: Dear Mom & Dad, why wasn’t I enrolled into this High School??
When I walked through the doors and into the hallways with my name card dangling from my neck, I honestly felt like the new girl in town who didn’t know a soul. Surrounded by hundreds of people who speak my (food as well as native) language, I quickly hopped into the coffee line. I tried to make small talk with others… but they weren’t really that friendly at 8am… so I did my best to blend in
by eating all the food provided by the sponsors before the auditorium doors opened.
Not gonna lie. I-kinda-didn’t-know-how-big-of-a-deal-this-conference-was.
The Key-Note Speaker was the Deputy Secretary of Agriculture, Kathleen A. Merrigan. Everyone knew who she was except for me. She spoke about farms, bills, policies, the government, and CSA’s.
So then I thought… maybe I don’t speak their language…
However, soon after the Deputy of Agriculture finished, five well-respected food professionals approached the stage one-by-one to speak about food-related topics to kick off the conference. 3 out of the 5 spoke to me.
Executive Director, The BLK ProjeK
- Man, this woman knew how to work the mic and the energy in the crowd. She spoke about how she was a normal mother in Harlem, sick of canned products, obesity, McDonalds and unhealthy living. Long story short, she rallied a group of Mom who wanted to serve their children good food. Tandy didn’t want an overpriced supermarket, she just wanted local, sustainable food from her neighbors. So she started The BLK ProjeK.
Brewmaster of The Brooklyn Brewery and Editor-in-Chief of The Oxford Companion to Beer
- EVERYONE and I literally mean EVERYONE should hear Garrett Oliver’s revolutionary comparison about “food” in the supermarkets and The Matrix. Spectacular speech. Oh yeah and he’s a brewmaster, so he’s all kinds of awesome.
Founder, Egg Restaurant & Parish Hall Restaurant
- George Weld spoke about the importance of every person in the food industry; he told us a story about how he overheard a customer speak so low about “people in the kitchen: while he was eating a burger, in a restaurant, made by the very same person he comparing to in his conversation. He made me realize that the food industry is just as important as any job in the world, and I am, without a doubt, in the right place.
Over the next few days, read all about the Inspiration at the Just Food Conference:
- Nutrition Workshops
- Career Panelists
- Job Fair
- Food Bloggers & Food Sponsors
Say hello to my new friends! Reana (Food Activist) and Ashley (SimpleFoodHealthyLife.com)!