Stories / Impact

Kicking Off Our Industry Support Webinars: Spring Semester

JBF Impact Team

March 27, 2020


Plating fish in the Beard House photo Clay Williams
Photo: Clay Williams

Social distancing, stimulus packages, unemployment law, disaster planning, and homeschooling. The restaurant industry suddenly finds itself on the front lines of understanding things we never thought we’d have to face.

We at the James Beard Foundation are acutely aware of the negative effects COVID-19 has had not only on the businesses of our industry, but on the mental health and sense of place of our colleagues. We are taking steps to ensure chefs, restaurateurs, and food lovers from across the nation are well-informed on topics ranging from understanding policy to how to shift operations to take out to how to turn restaurants into emergency feeding centers.

This spring, we’ll be hosting a Industry Support learning series. Every day at 2:00 P.M. we’ll host 50-minute webinars and conversations on the topics that matter most to you. Each webinar will be interactive, feature a clear, straightforward presentation, as well as a 15-minute Q&A.

The spring session kicks off on Monday, March 30, and will continue everyday at 2:00 P.M. until further notice. You must pre-register for each webinar, but there is no fee to attend. All sessions will be held on the GoToWebinar platform, and your registration link will include instructions on how to access the sessions.

Next week’s schedule will feature:

Monday, March 30: Insurance, the Facts for Restaurants

Feeling unsteady of how to navigate the possibilities of your insurance plan? Evan Dash of Dash/Love Insurance, who works with chefs such as Judy Ni of Baology in Philadelphia, will review universal rules about insurance; what a standard hospitality or food business contracts typically covers; suggestions how to file a rightful claim; and most importantly, a checklist of asks you can make to your insurance companies during COVID-19 disruptions.
Register here.

Tuesday, March 31: Intro to Sobriety Resources

Our very own director of community, Colleen Vincent, will be leading an information session on free resources available to folks who may wonder whether Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, or Ben’s Friends are right for them. This session will provide a peek into the programs, what the first meeting will be like, and aims to take the uncertainty out of getting help. If you’ve never gone this route before, or don’t consider yourself “an addict” but are struggling right now and need a sobriety resource, this session is for you. Also great for folks who know or care for someone struggling with addiction and want to pass on clear information.
Register here.

Wednesday, April 1: Social Media During COVID-19

Rosalyn Mahashin and Cynthia Jorgensen, part of the Strategic Partnerships team at Facebook, will guide you through tips and tricks to staying relevant during the shutdowns, engaging your staff and community online, creating active social networks, running effective Facebook fundraisers, and other community-based options for businesses.
Register here.

Thursday, April 2: Demystifying Government Relief Programs

David Candor and James Joseph of the Law Office of Arnold Porter will break down unemployment, SNAP, and other government-based resources available to the hospitality community in layman's terms that make filing, accessing, and even informing your staff about the relief available to them a breeze. This webinar will focus on federal options, and will provide a contact sheet for state-based options available at the end of the presentation.
Register here.

Friday, April 3: Spirited Conversation; At-Home Mixology

Gina Cheversani (Buffalo & Bergen, WEL 2019), and Monica Pierce (Tenth Ward Distillery & Owning It: D.C.) will talk at-home mixology, and what the bar and bottle business is doing to cope with ever-changing mandates and opportunities. Expect a spirited conversation on how you can survive and stay relevant during the shutdowns, followed by raising a Quarantini toast to taking a moment to breathe, having a laugh, and commiserating.
Register here.

Please note all sessions will begin each day at 2:00 P.M. EST.

We're aware that due to limited capacity and scheduling constraints, many of our colleagues in the food industry may be unable to join the webinars. We will record each and post daily. You can find these, and all available resources, at

We will continue to post resources and perspectives as we receive new information. If you have resources or tips related to the industry’s response to COVID-19, please reach out at

We look forward to seeing you each day at 2:00 P.M. EST. Please register here.

Our team would like to know what topics you would like us to cover. Please email us at with your suggestions on speakers, resources and issues you would like us to host.

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Webinars Covid-19