Denison Lecture Series Hosts D.C. Central Kitchen Founder
Posted: November 28, 2006
The third guest lecturer on the Denison Lecture Series is Robert Egger, founder and president of D.C. Central Kitchen, who will speak at 7:30 p.m. on Monday (Dec. 4) in Slayter Auditorium. This lecture is free and open to the public.
The slogan "Combating hunger -- Creating opportunity" sums up the reason why the D.C. Central Kitchen was founded. A former nightclub owner, Egger saw a tremendous amount of waste in Washington, D.C. restaurants and poverty on the streets. He decided to fight both problems at once. The Kitchen uses food donated by regional foodservice businesses (nearly two tons a day) to fuel its nationally recognized culinary arts job-training program, where men and women learn marketable skills while the donations are converted into balanced meals. The employees cook and prepare more than 4, 000 meals a day for distribution to Washington's homeless population.
Egger believes that business should and can help people in order to maximize both moral and monetary profits. The results of the Kitchen shadow those beliefs by having distributed 16 million meals, and helping more than 500 men and women gain full-time employment, since opening. The Kitchen also operates two businesses, Fresh Start Catering and New Beginnings Contract Foods, both of which employ graduates while generating income that underwrites a portion of the training program. Also, the Kitchen operates an outreach program, First Helpings, which serves breakfast and offers counseling to the homeless living on the streets of Washington.
Egger is chairman of the Mayor's Commission on Nutrition as well as Street Sense, Washington's "homeless" newspaper. He is on the Board of the Food Systems Leadership Institute, which is based at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and RESULTS, a nonprofit grassroots advocacy organization, committed to creating the political will to end hunger and the worst aspects of poverty. He was the Co-Convener of the Nonprofit Congress, held in Washington, D.C. in 2006. He was included in the Non Profit Times' list of the "50 Most Powerful and Influential Nonprofit Leaders of 2006." The recipient of the 2005 Volunteers of America Community Service award and the 2004 James Beard Foundations Humanitarian of the Year award, he has been named an Oprah Angel, a Washingtonian of the Year, a Point of Light, and one of the Ten Most Caring People in America by the Caring Institute.
Egger's book, "Begging for Change, The Dollars and Sense of Making Nonprofits Responsive, Efficient and Rewarding for All," was released in 2004. It was recently awarded the 2005 McAdam Prize for "Best Nonprofit Management Book" by the Alliance for Nonprofit Management.
CALENDAR LISTING: Denison University, Granville -- The Denison Lecture Series presents Robert Egger for a lecture on "Combating Hunger- Creating Opportunity"; at 7:30 p.m., Monday (Dec. 4), in Slayter Auditorium. Free and open to the public. Contact 740-587-6394 to confirm information.
Denison University, founded in 1831, is an independent, residential liberal arts institution located in Granville, Ohio. A highly selective college enrolling 2,100 full-time undergraduate students from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries, Denison is a place where innovative faculty and motivated students collaborate in rigorous scholarship, civic engagement and the cultivation of independent thinking.
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