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Alice Waters

Alice Waters, chef, author, and proprietor of Chez Panisse Restaurant in Berkeley, California, and founder of the Edible Schoolyard Project, is a pioneer of a culinary philosophy based on using the freshest organic seasonal ingredients. Over the course of 42 years, Chez Panisse has developed a network of local farmers and purveyors whose dedication to sustainable agriculture assures the restaurant a steady supply of pure, fresh ingredients. 

Waters’s commitment to education led to the creation of The Edible Schoolyard in Berkeley, a one-acre garden and kitchen classroom at Berkeley’s Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School. Started in 1996, the Edible Schoolyard in Berkeley is a model public education program that gives students the knowledge and values they need to build a humane and sustainable future by actively involving them in planting, harvesting, and cooking. The success of the program led Waters to found the Edible Schoolyard Project, a non-profit organization with the goal of building and sharing an edible education curriculum from kindergarten through high school. Its vision is for gardens and kitchens to become interactive classrooms for academic subjects, and for every student to have a free, nutritious, organic lunch. Its website,, serves as a resource for edible education programs around the world and gathers and maps best practices for an edible education curriculum.

The Big Picture at the Edible Schoolyard from The Edible Schoolyard Project on Vimeo.

Waters is vice president of Slow Food International, a nonprofit organization that promotes and celebrates local artisanal food traditions and has more than 100,000 members in over 130 countries. She is the author of 10 books, including "The Art of Simple Food: Notes, Lessons, and Recipes from a Delicious Revolution" and her most recent book "40 Years of Chez Panisse: The Power of Gathering".

Alice Waters’ honors and affiliations include:

Inductee to the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, 2011

Légion D’Honneur, 2010

Honorary Doctor of Humanities, Princeton University, 2009

Inductee, California Hall of Fame, 2008 

Co-recipient with Kofi Annan, Global Environmental Citizen Award, 2008 

Member, American Academy of Arts & Sciences, 2007

Lifetime Achievement Award, Restaurant magazine’s World’s 50 Best Restaurants, 2007 

Force for Nature Award, Natural Resources Defense Council, 2004

Best Restaurant in America, Gourmet magazine, 2001

Founder, Yale Sustainable Food Project, Berkeley College, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut,  2003

Vice President, Slow Food International, Bra, Italy, 2003

Founder, Sustainable Food Program at the American Academy in Rome, 2006