The James Beard Foundation announced the appointment of Wagstaff Media & Marketing as its new agency of record. The firm will represent the Foundation in its marketing and communications efforts surrounding its national programming, awards, and leadership.
“The Foundation is focused on helping shape the future of the food and beverage industry,” says James Beard Foundation CEO Clare Reichenbach. "Wagstaff’s breadth of industry knowledge, demonstrated commitment and alignment to the foundation’s core values, and its national and international reach make them ideal partners to help us amplify this work. Our team is looking forward to working with them.”
Mary Wagstaff, President and Founder of Wagstaff Media & Marketing remarks, “The James Beard Foundation has always been a source of inspiration for our work. Our colleagues and clients are aligned with the JBF mission to celebrate, support, and elevate the people behind America’s food culture while championing a standard of good food anchored in talent, equity, and sustainability. At a moment when our industry deserves outstanding public relations and marketing support more than ever, we are thrilled to partner with the James Beard Foundation as they continue to provide critical resources to independent restaurants as a part of their Open for Good campaign; reintroduce the James Beard Awards; and amplify their industry and community programs that recognize and celebrate unique achievements in expressing America’s rich and diverse foodways.”
The team will be led by Valerie Wilson, who recently rejoined Wagstaff as Managing Director, Culture and Lifestyle, and brings over 20 years of hospitality, lifestyle, and cultural marketing experience. She has served clients from Gallo to Wines from Spain, Robert Mondavi, and the Miss America organization. She has also worked with international organizations including the Region of Campania (Italy). Her hospitality experience includes leading media relations for iconic culinary marketing platforms including NYC Restaurant Week and Restaurant Day as well as previous work on the James Beard Foundation Awards. Before founding her own agency in 2010, Wilson worked at leading PR and Event agencies including M. Young Communications, Kaplow Communications, DeVries Public Relations, and was the Director of Wagstaff’s Chicago office for two years in the early 2000s.
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