Metro honors Philly Power Women

As Editor-in-Chief, it is my absolute pleasure to introduce Metro’s Philly Power Women. These city leaders have innovated and dedicated themselves to Philadelphia and together, help make our city truly amazing. 

As the Metro staff created this comprehensive list of Philly Power Women, one thing became abundantly clear—we are among greatness here in the City of Sisterly Love. 

It was extremely challenging to narrow it down to these incredible women. I am in awe of the persistence, brilliance and incredible work ethic these leaders have demonstrated. Not only have they broken the glass ceiling—many of the amazing women on this list have made Philadelphia history—but they continue to lead by example and set a precedent of excellence for Philadelphia. 

These trailblazers have made Philadelphia stronger, kinder, and a better place. Through their invaluable leadership, they have left their mark on our city, and history.  

 

Amberella, Street Artist

As a Philadelphian, it’s impossible not to feel connected to street artist, Amberella. Her iconic black hearts filled with inspirational and heart-felt messages offer a pick-me-up, a time to reflect, a motivational push to passersby from all walks of life. 

“I just want to blast my feelings in the streets as my own release and let the universe deliver what is shared to whoever needs to see it,” she says. “[As a child] I wanted to create and serve others and I feel that has come full circle. That’s my favorite part about what I do—connecting others through vulnerability.”

According to Amberella, everyday is “wildly different,” and her many responsibilities apart from creating include: connecting over email and zoom, working with galleries and merchandise warehouses, packaging and shipping, doing mockups and so much more. 

Amberella attended the University of Arts and got her BFA in Photography. She admits to never wanting the experience to end. “I soaked in years of experimentation in all types of mediums (and left) with an extremely well-trained eye for composition and an incredibly talented and inspiring network of friends,” she says.

 

 

Rochelle Bilal, Sheriff

Philadelphia Sheriff Rochelle Bilal is not only the first-elected African-American woman to lead the Office of the Sheriff in Philadelphia in its 181-year history, she’s also the first-elected woman in that role. 

“It’s a huge responsibility, and it also shows young women who are out there and thinking of running for any position in this world, it shows them that they can set out and do it if they want something better. They can go for it,” said Bilal. 

A lifelong resident of Philadelphia and 27-year veteran of the Philadelphia Police Department, Bilal is president of the Guardian Civic League—a law enforcement community oversight organization—and also served as secretary of the Philadelphia chapter of the NAACP. 

A true trailblazer in the City of Philadelphia, Bilal has focused on community outreach, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. The Sheriff’s Office hosts free food and produce giveaways, as well as virtual town halls to answer questions and help Philadelphia residents stay in their homes. 

 

 

Debora Borges-Carrera, Assistant Superintendent in the School District of Philadelphia 

Debora Borges-Carrera is a natural born leader. 

Whether she is in the classroom or at her church, Borges-Carrera has an incredible ability to educate and enlighten those around her. 

A lifelong Philadelphia resident, Borges-Carrera has dedicated her career to the betterment of education in Philadelphia. She currently serves as Assistant Superintendent in the School District of Philadelphia, but she has been refining her skills in the classroom for decades. Borges-Carrera successfully has risen through the ranks from teaching to becoming an assistant principal, principal and now Assistant Superintendent. 

And when she is not educating Philadelphia youth in the classroom, she’s leading the way as Pastor of Urban Worship Center in Kensington. Her missionary work includes local outreach as well as projects in Honduras, Puerto Rico, and Africa and throughout Latin America. 

 

 

Kendra Brooks, Philadelphia City Council At-Large

On Nov. 5, 2019, Kendra Brooks made history, becoming the first ever Working Families Party member elected to Philadelphia City Council. A native of Philly’s Nicetown neighborhood, Brooks is no stranger to local activism, and for decades, she has used her local roots to make real change in Philadelphia. 

Brooks founded Stand Up Nicetown and the Our City, Our Schools coalition and was appointed by Mayor Jim Kenney to the school board nominating panel. For close to 20 years, she worked at Easterseals, connecting families with disabilities to vital programs and resources in the community, and also helped children with special needs gain access to summer programs. Brooks also worked with the 215 People’s Alliance Steering Committee, where she led efforts through the Alliance For A Just Philadelphia to draft The People’s Platform, a comprehensive set of progressive reforms on issues ranging from workers’ rights to healthy schools to criminal justice. 

Throughout her career, Brooks has dedicated herself to public service, focusing on affordable housing, public education, and championing a Philadelphia Green New Deal.

 

 

Valerie Camillo, President of Business Operations for Philadelphia Flyers and Wells Fargo Center

Valerie Camillo is not only breaking barriers in South Philly, but throughout the entire National Hockey League. 

Camillo is the first woman hired as President of a NHL franchise. But her leadership at Wells Fargo Center spans far beyond the ice. Camillo directs all business activities for the Philadelphia Flyers and the massive sports arena, leading all marketing and administration operations. 

Camillo is also a member of the NHL’s Board of Governors. She is Governor and President of the Philadelphia Wings of the National Lacrosse League, and President of the Maine Mariners of the ECHL “AA” Hockey League. 

The Philadelphia trailblazer is also extremely active in the community — she serves on the Board of the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, and is a member of Philadelphia’s Young Presidents Organization and is also on the Corporate Counsel at CHOP.  

 

 

Nicole Cashman, Owner of Cashman & Associates

As founder and CEO of renowned marketing and communications firm, Cashman & Associates, no day is ever the same, and Nicole Cashman wouldn’t have it any other way.

Apart from running day-to-day operations, Cashman is also a “de facto” Creative Director of the company, overseeing strategy, campaign development, social content and more. 

What Cashman finds most fulfilling about her work is having a hand in helping her clients and staff achieve their goals. “I love helping them reach their fullest potential,” she says. 

Cashman is also a big proponent of women supporting women and considers it a pillar of her success. 

“What’s been so special about Cashman & Associates being a team of predominantly women is how we empower each other on a daily basis. One of the greatest ways we do that is by sharing our stories – the good, the bad, and the ugly – both personal and professional,” she says. 

Despite a hectic schedule, Cashman makes time to give back to the community as well, having served on the boards of the Philadelphia Art Alliance, the Greater Philadelphia Film Office, the City of Philadelphia’s Mural Arts Program, and the Childhood Resilience Foundation.

 

 

Lorene Cary, Penn Professor and Vote that Jawn Founder

As an American author, lecturer and playwright, Lorene Cary has made her mark on the literature world with numerous publications and plays. Locally, Cary’s play about Harriet Tubman, ‘My General Tubman’, premiered in January of 2020 at Arden Theatre and was extended twice until COVID-19 hit in March of that year. 

On a larger stage, Cary’s 2019 care-taking memoir, ‘Ladysitting: My Year with Nana at the End of Her Century’, was released both as an audiobook and a paperback, while also being commissioned in 2021 as a play for Arden Theater. 

Cary’s non-fiction accolades include her best-selling memoir ‘Black Ice’, a collection of stories for young readers titled ‘Free! Great Escapes from Slavery on the Underground Railroad,’ and numerous magazine articles and blogs, while her novels include ‘The Price of a Child’, chosen as the first One Book One Philadelphia offering;  ‘Pride’; and ‘If Sons, Then Heirs’.  

On top of her exceptional writing, Cary also has taught fiction and non-fiction at UPenn for 25 years and founded the Art Sanctuary in 1998. Most recently, Cary has also founded #VotethatJawn, supporting youth registration, voting, and engagement. 

 

 

Gayatri Chopra, Owner of Simitri

As the Creative Head for Simitri, Gayatri Chopra created a local company that specializes in handmade bags, accessories and also giving back to the community. 

Simitri’s designs have reached far and wide enough to even land recognition on the red carpet, but the true star power comes in Chopra’s ability to reach people in times of struggle and need. In the wake of everything that has happened this past year, Chopra has had to pivot her designs to focus on products that are a little more useful for the times. Instead of focusing on her typical chic clutch designs, Chopra has also designed masks and more accessories—things that can be deemed as more “essential.” 

Those essential products also took on a different meaning in October. During Breast Cancer Awareness month, Chopra donated 15% of online sales to Living Beyond Breast Cancer while also re-launching their gift cards at 50% off, something they did earlier this year in April to help with the pandemic and to also keep their artisans in India in business. 

 

 

Joey Clark, Owner of Kin Boutique 

Joey Clark entered the small business world of Philly after opening her storefront Kin Boutique in 2017. Kin was meant to be more than a store that sells clothes and accessories, but also a space that takes the pressure out of shopping and instead puts the spotlight on diversity and community, as well as style. 

When COVID-19 hit, Clark was able to pivot her entire model during the shutdowns and spent her time doing research on post-pandemic consumerism and how people need to relate to where they are shopping. All of this research led the business owner to change the boutique’s entire model to incorporate needed changes in tune with the current pandemic situation. 

Now, Clark also has a closet concierge service being offered through the boutique and is offering both virtual and personal styling appointments to the list of shifts made by the innovative store owner during COVID-19. 

 

 

Jeannine A. Cook, Owner of Harriet’s Bookstore

Jeannine Cook does a lot more than sell books.

The owner of Harriet’s Bookshop on Girard Avenue has created a place for Philadelphians to gather and celebrate female authors, artists and activists. Named after abolitionist and historical heroine Harriet Tubman, the Fishtown shop officially opened on Feb. 1, 2020 and has been enlightening Philadelphians ever since. 

“I came to the city at 17 years old, when I was in high school,” said Cook. “We would drive up from Virginia—take a five hour drive, just to come and stare at City Hall. We thought it was the most beautiful city we’ve ever seen. We were just enamoured by beauty. 

“That’s never gone away for me. I’ve always seen it as a beautiful place with a realness and ruggedness that is really especially necessary nowadays.”

Cook says the mission of Harriet’s Bookshop is to celebrate women artists and activists, and “all the work that we’ve done here is offspring from that.” Through her work both at the shop and in the community, Cook continues to make Philadelphia wiser, smarter and certainly well read.  

 

 

Jacqueline City, Fashion Designer 

Jacqueline City has been making waves in the Philly fashion world and beyond for all of the right reasons. 

The young fashion designer from South Philly created Jacqueline City Apparel, a highly inclusive line that has options for women, men, unisex, kids and plus sizes. The young designer suffered from a brain injury in 2014, and soon after was diagnosed with dysautonomia—a disorder of the autonomic nervous system—and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome or POTS, another element of the disorder. Her own experience catapulted the 24-year-old to then create the Authentic Collection and a campaign that included viewpoints from many different walks of life like first responders, mothers, veterans, and students who all shared their stories of pandemic-life. 

To add to her list of accolades, City, who showed off her work at New York Fashion Week already is set for an upcoming appearance at Paris Fashion Week later this year.

 

 

Sybille Damas, Chief Operations Officer for Congreso de Latinos Unidos

Sybille Damas is the Chief Operations Officer for Congreso de Latinos Unidos, an organization she’s been part of for over 17 years.

What she loves most about her work is untangling issues and helping others work through challenges to achieve goals. She also loves that no day is ever the same.

“Days are dynamic with various challenges like managing the building infrastructure of over 100,000 square feet and supporting the construction and move of our Federally Qualified Health Center during a pandemic,” Damas says.

Damas is inspired by those who have overcome obstacles in life.

“When I compare my struggles, I try to put them into perspective and continue to push and not give up.”

As far as how women can best support other women, Damas offers the following advice: “Leverage relationships to help other women with career advancement. If you have a ‘squad’ or group of women you connect with, allow other women who aren’t part of a squad to join.”

 

 

Sofia Deleon, Owner of El Merkury

Becoming one of the city’s most successful restaurants takes a lot of heart, and that’s exactly what Sofia Deleon put into El Merkury. 

Deleon moved to the States from Guatemala years ago and saw a need to create a place that represented and could introduce people to her culture. This idea of representing underrepresented cultures through cuisine was where El Merkury originated. The establishment has been able to adapt and grow over the course of its existence, and even has been able to navigate the pandemic situation quite successfully through Deleon’s leadership. 

The business was able to survive the pandemic—which sparked a challenging time causing many food and beverage establishments to shut down—partly because of their work with the nonprofit World Central Kitchen and the Sunday Love Project. Deleon worked through the pandemic with the nonprofits to ensure both the survival of El Merkury and help the community, and now, the establishment is back open and has expanded its footprint across the city even more. 

 

 

Marlo Dilks, Owner of SliCE and P’unk Burger

If you’re a fan of East Passyunk, chances are you’re a fan of Marlo Dilks, who owns the celebrated SliCE and P’unk Burger with her husband, Jason. As if that wasn’t enough, she also has a house full of kids, ranging in age from 2 to 19.

“A typical day for me is a little crazy because I have seven daughters and six of them are under 10,” Dilks says. “So I can’t say I truly have a set work schedule. I work from home, from the sidelines of their games, from almost everywhere—but it works for me.”

After spending 10 years working as a Corporate Accountant at Urban Outfitters, Dilks was inspired to get started as an entrepreneur by her parents, who are also entrepreneurs. Her mother owns A Star is Born on East Passyunk, located right next to P’unk Burger. 

“I think if it wasn’t for my family’s love for food and passion for business I wouldn’t be where I am today,” she says. “They sparked the interest in me to own my own business and to have a product I’m passionate and proud of. I also feel that my business degree and experience with Urban Outfitters taught me so much about business, leasing, budgeting etc. and helped me reach my goals.”

So what’s next for Dilks? A new restaurant of course.

“We have a new concept on West Passyunk that we plan to launch this spring/early summer. It will be old world sandwiches with a modern spin.”

 

 

Melissa Dunphy, Composer

Contemporary composer Dr. Melissa Dunphy has made her mark on Philly in more ways than one. The Australia native has created a unique and enlightening musical experience by taking social or political commentary and transforming it into works of art.

One of her successful pieces, ‘Gonzales Cantata,’ she wrote about former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales during the Bush Administration. That particular piece received recognition on the ‘Rachel Maddow Show’ and was featured in the ‘Wall Street Journal’. Most recently, Dunphy composed a work surrounding Abigail Adams famous ‘Remember the Ladies’ letter to her husband in 1776 with the Philharmonia for the Museum of the American Revolution.

Dunphy and her husband also are hosts of a popular podcast ‘The Boghouse’ which centers on their time sifting through one-of-a-kind Philly artifacts that they found on their land.

 

 

Addie Elabor, Owner of Di’YANU

Addie Elabor came to the United States from Nigeria when she was just six years old. After searching for a clothing line that used modern African-inspired fashion prints with no avail, Elabor decided to create her own. 

D’IYANU was created in 2014, with the initial collection launching in January of that year with just six styles. Elabor poured her heart and soul into this new passion project, and was able to find ways to get the clothes manufactured locally and shipped out of her studio apartment in King of Prussia. 

By October of 2014, D’IYANU—which gets its name from the French meaning of “D’” for “of” or “from“ and the Nigerian language Yoruba meaning for “IYANU” meaning “miracle” or “wonderful”—had become a success. 

When coronavirus hit, everything changed, and D’IYANU pivoted her business and started making masks on top of other online offerings. Blending the prints that are typically offered in Western African cultures with modern designs has always been at the core of the brand’s mission, so it only made sense for the masks to follow suit and become much more than just essential items. 

 

 

Dr. Audrey Evans, Co-Founder of the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House

Dr. Audrey Evans’ passion for medicine is boundless. 

Her entire life has been dedicated to helping others, with a special focus on children in need. Evans is a pioneer in the study and treatment of childhood cancers and in 1974, she founded the original Ronald McDonald House in Philadelphia to provide families a place to stay while their children received cancer treatments. 

Born in York, England, Evans attended the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons in Scotland and later relocated to the United States, where she continued her lifelong passion at Boston Children’s Hospital, the University of Chicago and, in 1969, became the inaugural Chief of Oncology at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Three years later, she was appointed a professor of pediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. 

Dr. Evans’ decades of dedication have impacted countless children and families worldwide. She is a pioneer in the clinical study of childhood cancer, specifically neuroblastoma, and a true trailblazer in the medical field. 

 

 

Elizabeth Fielder, State Representative

As a journalist, Elizabeth Fielder was sure to always hold politicians and city officials accountable. 

Now, she’s taking even more of a hands-on approach. 

State Rep. Elizabeth Fielder was elected to the Pennsylvania House in 2018, representing neighborhoods in South Philly within the 184th Legislative District. A former reporter at WHYY-FM, Fielder covered politics for 10 years before becoming a politician herself. 

Nowadays, Fielder is a strong advocate for education, specifically in Philadelphia public schools. She has worked vigorously to ensure all children—regardless of race, economic class or gender—have an opportunity for a quality education in Philadelphia. She has also prioritized fair compensation for teachers, as well as competitive contracts and union representation. 

The South Philly resident has also made health care and environmental issues a priority, supporting universal healthcare, Medicare and Medicaid expansion, protecting a woman’s power to make her own healthcare choices, as well as clean and renewable energy. 

 

 

Bridget Foy, Owner of Bridget Foy’s 

Bridget Foy was born into the restaurant business and wouldn’t have had it any other way. Her parents founded the iconic East Philly Cafe in 1978, which was renamed Bridget Foy’s soon after her birth. Foy started out as a hostess there and caught the restaurant bug, deciding to study hospitality management at Johnson & Wales University in Rhode Island. After spending a few years working in the New York City restaurant scene, she made her way back to Philly to lead the family business. 

“I like that it’s always exciting and no day is ever the same,” Foy says. “I enjoy the multitasking of everything—you never know what’s going to happen.” 

Even in the face of disaster after the devastating fire that destroyed Bridget Foy’s in 2018, Foy’s entrepreneurial spirit rose like a phoenix through the flames, when she opened another successful restaurant during that time—Crybaby Pasta. 

“When you’re in the restaurant business, it’s more of a lifestyle because of the hours—it becomes part of your identity. It takes a lot of nurturing to make a new restaurant work and we have a phenomenal team that works with us.”

 

 

Kim E. Fraites-Dow, CEO of Girl Scouts

As CEO of the Girl Scouts of Eastern Pennsylvania, Kim E. Fraites-Dow is empowering generation after generation of girls every day. Celebrating her tenth year with the organization, what inspires Fraites-Dow most about her work is seeing growth of people, from the girls who make up the Girl Scouts to her colleagues.

“Usually when you see that happening, it’s when they’re willing to take risks or try something new. The growth they experience in these moments is amazing,” she says.

Fraites-Dow and the entire organization had to try something new themselves when the pandemic hit. For the first time in 108 years, the Girl Scouts had to figure out a way to stay connected virtually.

“The first two weeks after lockdown, we started Girl Scouts at Home,” she says. “Between the end of March to mid-June, more than 10,000 girls participated in these programs. It was very inspiring to see our community stay connected even though they were physically apart.”

 

 

Deana Gamble, Mayor Kenny’s Communications Director 

Since April 2018, Deana Gamble has served as the Communications Director for the City of Philadelphia, managing strategic and crisis communications for Mayor Jim Kenney and over 50 city offices. 

“I get to support a ton of different causes in the city, from education to police reform to racial equity work to homelessness prevention. It’s all really rewarding,” she says.

This year, Gamble rose to the challenge of overseeing the city’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. She admires how Philadelphia came together in such a trying time, calling it a “small town disguised as a big city.”

For the past eight years, Gamble has worked for the city, serving as Chief of Staff and Communications Director for the Mayor’s Office of Education. She and her twin sister were the first in their family to graduate from college, with Gamble as an alumnus of Temple University’s Lew Klein College of Media and Education.

She attributes her success so far to the power of teamwork. “Teamwork makes the dream work,” she says. “I’ve got really great mentors. This is not a role you can do yourself. Asking for help and being collaborative is important.”

 

 

Jane Golden, Founder and Executive Director of Mural Arts Philadelphia

Mural Arts Philadelphia is massive in the City of Brotherly Love and beyond, and at the forefront of its success is Jane Golden. 

Since Mural Arts’ inception in 1984, Golden has helped the small city agency grow into the nation’s largest public art program and a global model for transforming public space and community through art. 

With Golden leading the art-centric agency, Philly has become known as the “Mural Capital of the World” and over the years, Mural Arts has created over 4,000 works of public art through innovative collaborations with community-based organizations, city agencies, nonprofit organizations, schools, the private sector, and philanthropies. Golden helped implement the organization’s belief that “Art ignites change” and annually, Mural Arts enrolls 3,000 people in three major program areas; engages 7,000 people in the creation of over 50 major public art projects and hosts 15,000 on tours.

 

 

Helen Gym, Philadelphia City Council At-Large

Philadelphia City Councilmember Helen Gym is a true trailblazer. As the first Asian American woman to serve in Philadelphia’s City Council, Gym has deep connections to Philadelphia’s Asian American and immigrant communities. She is also one of the city’s leading advocates for the well-being of young Philadelphians. 

“What I love most about my work is being able to unite different constituencies on a push for a more fair and just Philadelphia, whether that’s through legislation, policy, or the city’s budget,” said Gym. “Before my time on Council, I spent decades teaching, organizing parents, and advocating for our public schools. I am proud to partner on meaningful change in public education alongside students, parents, educators, and communities invested in quality public schools and a healthier city for us all, especially young people.”

As chair of Council’s Children and Youth Committee, Gym has supported funding for pre-K programs and restored nurses and counselors back to every Philadelphia public school and established the city’s first fund to specifically address youth homelessness. Gym co-founded the Philadelphia Public School Notebook, an independent education newspaper, which investigates school district budgeting, privatization and charters.

Gym has also focused her legislative efforts on economic justice issues, including expanding the city’s living wage laws, and requiring disclosure for businesses accepting city subsidies. She has helped lead national efforts around sanctuary cities, the DREAM Act, and progressive public education policies. 

“I love Philadelphia because of its passionate and vibrant organizing history,” she said. “I am who I am because I had the chance to learn from legendary organizers who have shown us that another world is truly possible when we come together.”

 

 

Colleen M. Hanycz, Ph.D., LaSalle University President

Colleen M. Hanycz, Ph.D. made history in 2015, becoming the first woman and first layperson to serve as President in LaSalle University’s 153-year history. And that was just the beginning of her reign of excellence with the Explorers. 

She spearheaded several historic initiatives to help restructure academic programming, increase enrollment, create affordable tuition rates and build an exceptional learning environment for Philadelphia students. 

She oversaw a tuition freeze that included a 29-percent reduction, helping students of all economic backgrounds gain the opportunity to obtain a quality education. She also championed LaSalle’s Strategic Program Prioritization plan that included a new core curriculum.

Although her days at LaSalle University are numbered—in July, she will serve as the 35th President of Xavier University, where she once again will become the first woman and first layperson in school history—her initiatives will continue to help local students on Olney Avenue for years to come. 

 

 

Lauren Hart, Philadelphia Recording Academy’s Chapter Singer and President

She is the voice of the Philadelphia Flyers, and that’s just the beginning. 

Before every Flyer’s game, Philadelphians and the country can hear the voice of local musician Lauren Hart, but the singer’s reach spans far beyond the rink. Hart’s songs have been heard on television series and soap operas, and in addition to her music—and seven studio albums—Hart has also achieved accolades in broadcast television, serving as co-host of Philadelphia’s NBC 10! Show, appearing on the Comcast Sports Network covering the Flyers, and most recently hosted her own television show on the WMCN network called ‘ALL HART.’  

Currently, Hart is also the chapter president and singer of the Recording Academy Philadelphia Chapter and is on the Board of Governors of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. The Philadelphia Chapter is home to artists and music creators throughout Pennsylvania, Delaware and South New Jersey, but their reach expands far beyond the tri-state area.

 

 

Sheila Hess, City Representative 

Sheila Hess has served as City Representative since 2016 and has relished every minute of it. Appointed by Mayor Jim Kenney, she leads PR, marketing, and promotional efforts for the City of Philadelphia, and has been dubbed “Philadelphia’s top cheerleader.” 

“I love everything about my role serving as Philadelphia’s City Representative. I am incredibly honored and humbled to be able to represent my city, that I love and am so passionate about promoting,” said Hess. “I want the world to know all the great things Philadelphia has to offer you personally, civically and professionally. 

“To be appointed to this position as a public servant is a dream come true,” Hess continued. “Every day is different, so I am always learning. We deal with nonstop activities and topics and I love the chance to make a difference in our communities.”

Passionate about living a life of service, Hess is involved with a number of boards that not only promote Philadelphia but also help the disadvantaged, including: Global Philadelphia, PHLCVB, Visit Philadelphia, Historic Philadelphia, Inc., Greater Philadelphia Film Office, Back on My Feet, Police Athletic League, Marian Anderson Award and Fred’s Footsteps.

“I can’t imagine living anywhere else—I am a lifer Philadelphian—there’s no place else I’d rather live, work, play, and promote.”

 

 

Kris Kennedy, Executive Director, Northern Liberties Business Improvement District 

As the Executive Director for the Northern Liberties Business Improvement District (NBID),  Kris Kennedy wears a lot of “seemingly disparate” hats, but that’s what she loves most about her work.

“This job brings together so many of my arcane knowledge sets. I’ve done food styling, alcohol branding, carpentry, event production…I like that I can touch on all four in one week,” she says.

NBID has a lot of responsibilities, from street cleaning to hosting events, and Kennedy has a hand in all of it, making every day a little bit different.

“I  feel like I’m a computer running Word and Photoshop and Excel and like two dozen website tabs at the same time,” she says. “Some days I’m in meetings with the city or my board all day. Some days I’m out taking photos of the businesses or designing some graphics for social media. Some days I’m trying to get a contractor to stop blocking the sidewalk. I occasionally go out and clean the streets because it feels good.”

Since moving to Philly in 1996, Kennedy confesses to having a deep connection and love for it that is just as strong over 25 years later. 

“I’m really excited to have a job that allows me to shape our mutual future,” she says. 

 

 

Rosita Lamberti, Owner of Positano Coast, Caffe Aldo Lamberti, Lamberti Pizza & Kitchen

Rosita Lamberti has enjoyed the sweet taste of success. 

Her career in the restaurant business began in 2002, when she joined the family business working as a host at Caffe Aldo Lamberti in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. Since then, it has grown to include Lamberti Pizza (Cherry Hill), Positano Coast (Philadelphia), and the soon-to-open Lamberti Pizza & Market in Philadelphia. During that time, Lamberti has also risen through the ranks to become Director of Restaurants.

So what does she love most about her work? For Lamberti, it comes down to three core ingredients: the excitement, the food, and the people.

“It can definitely be chaotic and challenging but it is always interesting,” she says. “I also have a love and deep appreciation for food, specifically Italian cuisine, and love being able to serve our guests the very best. Most of all though, I love my team. They are the reason we are successful, and without them, we wouldn’t be where we are.”

As for who inspires her the most, Lamberti looks to her parents.

“They are the driving force behind our family of restaurants, and moved to the United States with very little,” she says. “Through hard work and perseverance, they have built an amazing business.”

 

 

Teresa M. Lundy, Founder of TML Communications

If you want to get the word out, Teresa M. Lundy is your woman. 

A government affairs and public relations professional, Lundy serves as the principal and founder of TML Communications. A self-starter and true public relations professional, Lundy has built a strategic public relations, crisis communications and community engagement firm that serves corporations, nonprofit organizations and government agencies. 

Lundy is a cornerstone of Philadelphia marketing. She has long served local communities through media relations, event management, campaigns and strategies. 

“I appreciate having the opportunity to help mission-driven organizations and corporations communicate with their audience. My work at TML Communications, on community engagement, allows me to develop innovative partnerships which magnify their impact,” said Lundy. “I am truly grateful that we have become a trusted partner for many over the past nearly six years in business. While we work with clients nationally, having our base of operations in Philadelphia allows me to stay connected with family and the issues that I care about. 

“Also, the city is growing — and despite the recent challenges due to COVID, I believe the best is yet to come.” 

 

 

Kate Marlys, Owner of Philly PR Girl

Kate Marlys is the founder of Philly PR Girl, a successful public relations firm that’s now in its 10th year. A business that initially started out as a blog covering Philly events, Philly PR Girl has expanded to offer event planning, influencer marketing, digital and social media services, public relations services, and content creation to its clients. 

Marlys has been featured in Philadelphia Style Magazine, Fox29’s Good Day Philadelphia and on NBC10 for her PR and entrepreneurial prowess. She’s also given talks at events like PA Conference for Women, the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, and a number of local universities. 

Apart from her work with Philly PR Girl, Marlys also created Photo Pop Up Philly in 2018, Philly’s first interactive art pop up, connecting the community with visual artists on the rise. 

When it comes to being a power woman, Marlys offers the following piece of advice: Don’t let anyone take credit for your success. 

“My success is because I hustled 24-7 my whole life. Even before Philly PR Girl, I always had multiple jobs because I knew networking was important and I’m a good publicist because of those connections.”

 

 

Joanna McClinton, State House Democratic leader 

Joanna McClinton has dedicated her life to public service. 

She’s held a plethora of positions throughout her impressive career—including chief counsel to state Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams, an assistant public defender and member of the Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing to name a few—and has made history in the state of Pennsylvania… twice. 

McClinton became the first woman and first African American to be elected as House Democratic Caucus Chair in 2018 and two years later, she was the first woman elected House Democratic Leader in its 244-year history.

A lifelong resident of southwest Philadelphia, McClinton has continuously invested in the community she loves and has dedicated her career to making Philadelphia a better place to live and work. 

 

 

Jenn McCreary, General Manager of Wonderspaces

For over 20 years, Jenn McCreary has helped nurture Philadelphia’s arts and culture sector through her work in marketing and special events. From organizing a neighborhood paint day in Mantua for the Prince of Wales to a Valentine’s Day wedding on SEPTA’s Market-Frankford El officiated by Mayor Michael Nutter, McCreary brings big ideas to life.

After spending 10 years as the Communications Director for the Mural Arts Program, she now serves as the General Manager for Wonderspaces Philadelphia, an interactive art space.

What she loves most about her work is the people.

“I am super lucky to lead a management team of smart, funny, talented women who approach the myriad challenges of safely operating an interactive art space during a global pandemic like every day is an episode of ‘The Amazing Race’,” she says.

As for what inspires her most, it’s new experiences, and Wonderspaces provides ample opportunity for that.

“That’s one of the things that I love about Wonderspaces. Every time a new artwork joins our lineup here, it’s a new learning experience with the piece itself, as well as an opportunity to learn more about the artist(s), their work, and their intention.”

 

 

Charisse McGill, Owner of Lokal Artisan Foods, French Toast Bites

Since starting Lokal Artisan Foods and French Toast Bites in 2018, Charisse McGill has quite the list of accomplishments. 

She was the first-ever Black female vendor to operate a food establishment at Spruce Street Harbor Park. She’s also the first ever Black woman in Pennsylvania to create her own signature beer (French Toast Bites Ale) and signature coffee (French Toast Bites Coffee) And this year, Lokal Artisan Foods was named 2020 Small Business of the Year by the African American Chamber of Commerce of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware.

“What I love the most about what I do is the opportunity to connect with our customers,” McGill says. “As much as it appears that I am in the food business, I am in the people business and just happen to serve food.”

McGill was inspired to embark on her entrepreneurship journey after spending seven years managing the Lansdale Farmers’ Market. 

“During that time I had the unique opportunity to see independent food producers live their dream under a 10×10 white tent, and the ones who were doing it correctly were earning six figures,” she says. “That’s when I decided that I was on the wrong side of the tent.”

As if running her own successful business wasn’t enough, McGill is currently pursuing her MBA in food marketing at St. Joseph’s University to teach at the college level.

“I learn most from the professors who were able to bring the textbook to life,” she says.

 

 

LaNeshe Miller-White, Executive Director, Theatre Philadelphia

LaNeshe Miller-White has been preparing her whole life for her current role as Executive Director of Theatre Philadelphia. The cultural producer, actress, and marketer got her start in the arts studying dance as a child.

“Part of the recital life was that at the end of the year we had to sell tickets to the recital and ads for the program book,” she says. “From an early age I had a connection between being an artist and working in arts administration. The concept of ‘getting butts in seats’ has been joint to performance for as long as I can remember. 

What Miller-White loves most about her work is bringing visibility and audiences to the Philadelphia theatre community. 

“We create art to be experienced by others,” she says. “Every moment that I can help an artist or a show sell another ticket, or get more eyes on their event, is a win for me.”

Miller-White is a graduate of Temple University’s School of Communication and Theater. Apart from her work with Theatre Philadelphia, she is also the co-founder of Theatre in the X, a West Philadelphia-based theater company that makes theatre accessible for Black audiences and provides opportunities for Black artists. 

 

 

Kathryn Ott Lovell, Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Commissioner

Next time you are sitting in the park and enjoying the Philadelphia greenery and scenery, you can thank Kathryn Ott Lovell. Commissioner of the Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Department since 2016, Ott Lovell oversees thousands of employees, more than 10,000 acres of land, hundreds of playgrounds and countless programs and events throughout Philadelphia. 

Ott Lovell has been integral in launching many Philadelphia favorite attractions, such as the mobile pop up beer garden, Parks on Tap, and Oval+ on Benjamin Franklin Parkway, a seasonal oasis that showcases public art, music, games, movie nights, outdoor fitness classes and much more. 

Before her time as commissioner, Ott Lovell spent time with the Fairmount Park Conservancy and Mural Arts Philadelphia. She also serves on the board of directors for the Please Touch Museum, Schuylkill River Development Corporation, Parkway Council, Free Library of Philadelphia, and the Philadelphia Sports Congress.

 

 

Danielle Outlaw, Police Commissioner 

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw made history in 2019, becoming the first African-American woman to lead the Philadelphia Police Department. She leads the nation’s 4th largest police department, which employs more than 6500 sworn officers and 800 civilians. 

Outlaw has faced immense challenges since her arrival in Philadelphia—an illegal gun crisis, rising homicide rates, the coronavirus pandemic and civil unrest following the fatal shooting of George Floyd at the hands of Minnesota police and Walter Wallace Jr. in West Philadelphia. 

Yet even in the face of adversity, Outlaw has always done her best to serve the people of Philadelphia and make our city a safer place to live.  

A California native, Outlaw has received many awards, including the Police Executive Research Forum Gary P. Hayes Award and the Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare Culture of Caring Award for Community Relations and Civic Engagement. She is also a member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police Human and Civil Rights Committee and is an active member of the National Organization of Black Law Executives.

 

 

Carrie Nork Minelli, Director of Advertising and Public Relations at Parx Casino

Life in Parx Casino is filled with excitement and thrill. Around every corner is a frenzy of lights, music and people. 

But for Carrie Nork Minelli, it’s just another day at the office. 

As Director of Advertising and Public Relations at Parx Casino, Nork Minelli brings life to the party—she directs all advertising and public relations efforts, creates publicity-driven events, creates marketing strategies and manages celebrity relations among many other responsibilities. 

“I absolutely love my position at Parx Casino. I never have the same day twice… it’s exciting, fast-paced, creative, philanthropic… and I am still learning and doing new things even after 11 years,” said Nork Minelli. “Just this year, due to Covid and budget cuts, I had the opportunity to create new TV commercials for Parx. I was always a part of that process with outside advertising agencies but this time I worked on the entire TV spot from soup to nuts—writing, casting, wardrobe, storyboards, production, filming, editing—alongside my colleague Brian Wilson. It was an awesome experience and now we are doing more of that work together which I love. 

“I also adore working with our fabulous live shows at the Xcite Center – from promoting the shows, working with the talent and of course the PR component.”

A Philadelphia native and Temple University graduate, Nork Minelli has compiled quite the resume in the entertainment industry. She got her start as a Philadelphia 76ers Dancer and a featured performer in live shows in New York, Tokyo, Myrtle Beach, Miami and Atlantic City. Her career in public relations includes stints with Cataldi Public Relations, Cashman & Associates, then later with Greenwood Racing Inc.and eventually Parx Casino. 

 

 

Cherelle Parker, City Council Majority Leader

Councilmember Cherelle L. Parker is a woman of action. She leads by example and has paved a way for true change in the City of Philadelphia. Serving the Ninth Council District, which includes East Mt. Airy, West Oak Lane, East Oak Lane, Olney, Lawncrest, Lawndale, Burholme and Oxford Circle, Parker has focused her outreach on job creation and sustainability and economic development.

Parker serves as chair of Council’s Labor and Civil Service Committee and vice chair of Council’s Committee on Commerce and Economic Development, and serves on various other committees: Appropriations; Children and Youth; Education; Housing, Neighborhood Development and the Homeless; Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs; Rules; and Transportation and Public Utilities.

“As Philadelphia’s Majority Leader, providing resources and support that touches every corner of the city has been my primary focus. From supporting commercial corridors, to helping businesses navigate and survive during COVID, to protecting Philadelphia homeowners and renters, to acquiring revenue for poverty reduction programs, to seeking real and meaningful reforms to the Philadelphia Police Department, to ensuring access to COVID testing to protect our communities, and so much more.”

 

 

Phobymo, Photographer

If pictures speak a thousand words, then the work of Philly-based photographer Morgan Smith—or Phobymo—tells an incredible story. 

The self-taught photographer calls the City of Brotherly Love home but her photography, in particular, focuses on the beauty of the human body, with all shapes and sizes included. 

Early in her career—before setting foot into the world of photos—Smith also worked full time in accounting before quitting to pursue a full-time career in photography. Since then, Phobymo has broadened her reach beyond the art world, also curating Mural Arts annual Art Auction in 2018 and curating and hosting the biannual all women’s art showcase, ‘Time To Pretend.’

Through her photography, Phobymo truly captures the essence of Philadelphians and the beauty and ruggedness the people of this city radiate every day.  

 

 

Rosalind Pichardo, Founder of Operation Save Our City

Rosalind Pichardo is a woman who knows how to make change happen. 

Her drive was apparent in her work with Operation Save Our City—the group works to bring a voice to victims of violence, something that is prevalent in the City of Philadelphia. Pichardo started the organization after her brother was murdered almost 10 years ago, but she’s had to deal with violence far before then. 

When creating Operation Save Our City, Pichardo wanted to aim to make the organization’s main goal to work with families of murder victims, helping them to cope with their grief and loss, while also helping bring the individuals responsible for the crimes to justice. 

Too often, Pichardo says that people are afraid to come forward, and so OSOC works to give a voice for those who no longer have one, while also providing a way for families to have a healthy outlet in the community.  

 

 

Jessie Prawlucki-Styer, Owner at Fond

Jessie Prawlucki-Styer has made her name known around the city through her acclaimed French-restaurant, Fond, with her husband and colleague Chef Lee Styer. But before launching the three-bell restaurant, Prawlucki-Styer worked her way up to Pastry Chef at Le Bec-Fin. 

As co-owner and pastry chef at Fond, Prawlucki-Styer’s style comes in the form of flavorful desserts and freshly baked goods to complement the dinner menus. Over the past year, Chef Prawlucki-Styer has hosted successful Bake Shop Pop-Ups at Fond, and partnered with Philabundance for a food drive around the holiday season. 

Over the course of the pandemic, in an effort to pivot and adapt this past year, Fond temporarily transitioned to Fond For All — a prepared foods market and takeaway restaurant featuring simple two-step meal kits to be enjoyed at home. During the winter months, Fond pivoted further to a street-side grill.

 

 

Lara Price, Chief Operations Officer, Philadelphia 76ers

Lara Price is at the top of her game.

As Chief Operating Officer of the Philadelphia 76ers, Price is responsible for business operations, corporate and team communications and public relations for Philly’s favorite basketball franchise. 

She’s been in the business for decades and over that time, has established herself as one of the top power leaders in the National Basketball Association. In 1998, Price became one of the first female Vice Presidents in the NBA and has been a pioneer in the game ever since. 

Price’s work spans far beyond the hardwood—she currently serves as the Sixers Youth Foundation President, she is a board member of the Police Athletic League, and has board positions on the Board of Trustees for the Camden Health and Athletic Association, the Philadelphia Sports Advisory Board, the Wilt Chamberlain Foundations Board, and is a Member of the Leadership Council for KIPP Philadelphia Charter Schools.

 

 

Paige Price, Producing Artistic Director, Philadelphia Theatre Company 

The show must go on, and thanks to Paige Price, it always does. 

Price is the Producing Artistic Director at Philadelphia Theatre Company, where she is able to bring a lifetime of experience in theatre to the Philadelphia stage. 

“I still count myself as an artist but really feel my life’s work now is to help other artists realize their dreams,” said Price. “I love trying to figure out how much of what you want to accomplish is possible and then trying to get just a little bit more — whether that has to do with resources, money, time, cashing in favors. Delivering just a little more than expected and having fun while doing so. I love being in a room/bar/office with theatre people — they are the most vibrant, funny, complicated, generous and demanding humans and I would shrivel away without them.”

Price’s knowledge and talent in theatre encompass every aspect of the stage—she spent years as a Broadway performer and also produced and directed events, television shows and theatre throughout America and the world. 

She was the first Vice President of Actors’ Equity Association, the national union for actors and stage managers. She is a founding member of the Board of Directors of the Theatre Subdistrict Council, a member of The League of Professional Theatre Women and Vice-President of the National Alliance for Musical Theatre, as well as a former Tony Award Nominator and Voter. 

So what inspires Price? “Fearless artists who simply cannot do anything else with their lives.  They see the world through a unique and wonderful lens and they center joy and exploration, always curious, always pushing to understand.”

 

 

Kimberly S. Reed, Author, Speaker

If the past year has taught us anything, it’s that you need a positive attitude to be able to cope with the obstacles that life throws at you. 

And no one knows that better than Kimberly Reed. 

Reed wears many hats as a global diversity, equality and inclusion strategist, certified diversity practitioner, nationally recognized thought leader, award-winning international speaker, top-rated corporate and leadership facilitator and trainer and author. 

Most recently, however, Reed has launched the 21 Days of Optimism, a new, comprehensive exploration of the power of optimism the tools, tactics, and themes of Reed’s latest book, ‘Optimists Always Win’ an interactive book that steers readers to “road test” their optimism skills, eliminate discouragement, and create a new set of positive habits as well. 

 

 

Rebecca Rhynhart, City Controller

Rebecca Rhynhart is the bridge between Philadelphians and their government. As City Controller, Rhynhart is the city’s financial watchdog—she is responsible for auditing every City department annually to ensure there is no waste, mismanagement or fraud. 

In 2018, Rhynhart made history, becoming the first woman ever elected City Controller for the City of Philadelphia. She brings nearly a decade of government experience to her current role. Since taking office, she has spearheaded many vital initiatives to increase transparency between the city’s government and its residents, including mapping Philadelphia’s gun violence crisis, examining the impact of COVID-19 on small businesses throughout the city, as well as conducting an independent investigation into the City of Philadelphia’s response to the civil unrest following the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minnesota police. 

“Too often, government doesn’t serve the people the way it’s supposed to and that needs to change. I ran for office because I love this city and I wanted our government to work better. Philadelphians deserve leaders that are willing to make bold decisions and stand up for what is right,” Rhynhart said. “As City Controller, I love being able to use my voice and the power of my office to push for the change I think is necessary to move our city forward, leaning into issues that have a social impact, as well as a financial one. 

“Whether it’s calling out wrongdoing, identifying wasteful spending, or making suggestions on how to spend tax dollars more efficiently, I believe government should work for the people and that’s what I work toward every day.”

 

 

Madi Sinha, Doctor, Author

Madi Sinha has a way with words.

Not only has she paved her way in Philadelphia through her work in orthopedics, but she’s also established herself as a successful author. 

Sinha was raised just outside of Trenton and completed her undergraduate studies at Villanova University. From there, she attended medical school at the Medical College of Pennsylvania (now Drexel University). Currently, Sinha practices physical medicine, addressing the intersection between orthopedics and neurology, and her role is primarily to diagnose patients. 

But while taking a class during some downtime while pregnant, Sinha began to pen her first novel, ‘The White Coat Diaries’ which immediately became a success. The story, although fictional, is based plenty off of Sinha’s own experiences and shines a light on mental health in the medical field. The doctor and author also has a book deal for two more books to come out through Berkley (under Penguin Books USA) in 2022 and 2023.

 

 

Mary Stengel Austen, President, CEO of The Tierney Group

Mary Stengel Austen was only 24 years old when she co-founded Tierney in 1989. Today, it is one of the mid-Atlantic’s largest marketing and communications agencies, with Stengel Austen at the helm as President and CEO.

“At the time, I didn’t know what I didn’t know. But I didn’t have any responsibilities other than myself and I thought—let’s go. I didn’t have a master plan but I knew I loved what I was doing and who I was doing it with.”

At Tierney, Stengel Austen fosters a culture of collaboration and gives employees permission to fail so that they can learn and grow. She believes this is how to inspire great work. 

Shortly after becoming CEO, Stengel Austen received a piece of advice from her mentor that has stuck with her—the concept of runway.

“He asked me, ‘What’s next? How are you going to continue to grow? You need runway and you need to create runway for other people.’ That has stuck with me since 2002,” she says. “You should always be learning something new and if you’re not, you’re not growing and contributing in the way you can for yourself and others.”

Stengel Austen embodies this advice in many ways, including her philanthropic efforts. Despite her many responsibilities as a CEO, wife and mother, she serves on a number of boards that include: Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (Chair), the United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, and the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce. 

 

 

Cheryl Ann Wadlington, Founder and Executive Director of The Evoluer House

Cheryl Ann Wadlington has paved the way for young women in Philadelphia. 

She founded The Evoluer House, a local nonprofit that offers empowerment programs “that encourage girls to think bigger, dream higher and be the best that they can be.” For 16 years, Wadlington’s organization has helped girls of color in Philadelphia aged 13 to 18 become strong leaders in the workforce and in their communities. 

This year, Wadlington was nominated for the L’Oréal Paris Women of Worth in the U.S. for 2020. The program honors extraordinary women around the world who selflessly volunteer their time to serve their communities for their Women of Worth Honoree recognition, and Wadlington is one of 10 women who were selected. 

Before starting The Evoluer House in 2004, Wadlington was heavily involved with overseeing different community centers and housing authorities for girls, and not just in Philadelphia. She says that most of the programs had to be shut down due to funds—something that happens regularly in cities around the country when it comes to girls’ programs in particular. 

Wadlington has made a true difference in the City of Sisterly Love. She’s worked on overseeing 50 more programs for girls mainly from the inner city, and 16 recreation centers throughout Philadelphia. 

 

 

Jill Weber, Sojourn Philly Restaurant Group

Jill Weber has taken flavors from all over the world, and gave them a home in Philadelphia. 

Originally from Indiana, Jill Weber made Philly her home after studying for her Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania. Her career in archaeology led her to travel to Syria, Turkey, Armenia, Oman, Iraq, and Italy giving her a vast knowledge of their culture and food, which she utilizes in her own restaurant business with her wine archaeology events. 

Weber is the owner of Sojourn Philly alongside her husband Evan Malone. The restaurant group is comprised of Jet Wine Bar, Philadelphia’s own “global vineyard,” adjacent to Jet Wine Garden, Rex 1516, an elevated Southern cuisine in a ‘faded mansion’ dining room, and Café Ynez, the Mexico-City inspired all-day diner located on Washington Avenue in South Philly. 

Sojourn Philly has previously partnered with fellow women entrepreneurs such as the Sisterly Love Food Fairs, as well as The Voter Project to raise awareness for the need for poll workers as well. This past year, Weber also co-developed Nourished, a meal delivery platform that enables hospital staff to access healthy and affordable food options while supporting eight local female-owned restaurants, including her own.  

 

 

Martina White, State Representative 

In a city that has voted predominantly Democratic for quite some time, Martina White forged her own path to the United State House of Representatives. 

In 2015, she became the first new Republican elected in Philadelphia in a quarter century. 

State Rep. Martina White serves the 170th District, which includes Bustleton, Millbrook, Parkwood and Somerton in Northeast Philly. She is a beloved public servant in her district and throughout her six years in the seat, has made real change in the communities she serves.  

“Before becoming a State Representative, I helped working families and small businesses from across my community and the greater Philadelphia area as they reached for the American Dream,” said White, who is also the Secretary of the House Republican Caucus and currently serves on the Rules Committee and the Committee on Committees. “What I saw was a government that too often stood in the way of their goals instead of helping them. That’s why I ran for office: to try and make life just a little easier for people by bringing common sense and practical ideas to government.

“As a representative, my favorite part of the job is meeting and helping people. My district in the Northeast is a wonderful place and it is made that way by the people who live there; representing them is an honor.”

 

 

Ellen Yin, Co-owner of High Street Hospitality, Activist

If you love Philadelphia’s food scene, chances are you’ve dined at a few of Ellen Yin’s award-winning establishments. The owner and co-founder of High Street Hospitality Group, Yin operates some of the region’s most celebrated restaurants, including a.kitchen+bar, Fork, and High Street Philly.

A Wharton School graduate, Yin has been named a “Woman of Distinction” by the Philadelphia Business Journal in 2020 and has been nominated numerous times for “Outstanding Restaurateur” by the esteemed James Beard Foundation. High Street Hospitality Group was also honored by the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce in 2020 for their “Inspiring Excellence Award.”

Despite the many demands that come from running a hospitality empire, Yin finds time to support the community and serves on a number of boards, including: Delaware River Waterfront Corporation, the Arden Theatre Company and the Community Advisory Board of the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University.

Also a published author, Yin’s book ‘Forklore: Recipes and Tales from an American Bistro,’ is available through Temple University Press and combines stories of Fork’s beginnings along with recipes from the iconic restaurant. 

 


Photos courtesy of: Eddy Marenco, Parx Casino, School District of Philadelphia, Lokal Artisan Foods, Mere Argyris and Jenna Nicole, Steve Weinik, Brianna Bolden, Wonderspaces, Rosie Simmons, Philadelphia Theatre Company, SliCE and P’unk Burger, Colin Lenton, Caffe Aldo Lamberti and Positano Coast, Jack Tomczuk, Twitter and Facebook. Bios written by Molly Given, Jennifer Lynn and Melissa Mitman. 

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