Yesterday it was announced that Susan Ungaro, our beloved president of more than 11 years, will step down at the end of 2017. In a statement, new JBF board chair Fred Seegal and outgoing chair Emily Luchetti summed up Susan's legacy: “Susan ushered in an era of amazing growth and success for the Foundation and furthered its mission in the U.S. and around the world. She helped place the Foundation at the forefront of the culinary conversation and advocated for its wide-reaching initiatives."
In a note to Foundation staff Susan wrote, "It has been a joy and an honor to work with all of you. You have helped me explore and learn more than I ever imagined about our wonderful world of food," adding, "When I leave at the end of the year, it will be with a feeling of great gratitude for the feast of knowledge and friendship I've enjoyed every day working with you at the James Beard House."
“It has been a special privilege to serve as president of the James Beard Foundation for over a decade," said Ungaro, who plans to continue to work with nonprofit organizations after her departure at the end of the year. "I remain passionately committed to supporting the James Beard Foundation in the years to come and staying connected to the extraordinary culinary community of chefs, restaurateurs, food media, and thought leaders, who welcomed me into their world 11 years ago."
The James Beard Foundation board of trustees is conducting a search for the next JBF president. Read the full press release.