You are invited to the March of Dimes 22nd Annual Signature Chefs Gala of Washington, D.C. Signature Chefs is one of D.C.'s premier social events highlighting the city's culinary masters brought together for an elegant evening of wine, cocktails and dining. You or your company can join approximately 400 affluent society members and business professionals as they support our mission while enjoying over 40 of the area's celebrated chefs, mixologists, bartenders and vintners. What could be sweeter? The evening will also include auctions with unique dining, entertainment, travel and leisure packages.
Meet Our 2018 Honorary Chef
Westfield, New Jersey native Michael Friedman's professional cooking career began as a prep cook with Mon Ami Gabi. Friedman spent three years with Rich Melman's Lettuce Entertain You group, rising to sous chef in just eight months before enrolling in the Culinary Institue of America, Hyde Park, New York.
After graduating top of his CIA class, Friedman began to work for Jose Andres at Zaytinya. After two years, he left his mentor to travel the world. Eating through Italy, Greece, Turkey and Northern Africa, Friedman picked up the interesting and exciting nuances of each country. Back in the US, Friedman spent time staging some infuential kitchens, including San Francisco's Incanto, Los Angeles' Lucques, Philadelphia's Vetri and New York's Scarpetta. Friedman returned to D.C. as Executive Sous Chef of Proof, and under the tutelage of Executive Chef Haidar Karoum, he learned to hone his craft and simplify his style to let seasonal ingredients chine.
Friedman opened up The Red Hen in 2014. His eclectic menu offers guests a focused selection of seasonal, Italian-influenced dishes interpreted with Mid-Atlantic ingredients. Red Hen continues to be a neighboorhood gem within Washington DC that excited diners with new dishes every season.
In 2016 he opened All- Purpose Pizzeria- serving antipasti, classic Italian American dishes and deck oven- fired pizzas in the heart of downtown D.C. As a New Jersey native, All Purpose became a love letter to Chef Friedman's youth. Shortly after its opening, All- Purpose was named D.C.'s top reataurant by the Washington Post. In 2017, Friedman was recognized as a James Beard Award Semifinalist. Michael Friedman holds a bachelor's degree in communications and a minor in American history from Boston University.
FUND THE MISSION
Nearly half a million babies in the U.S. are born prematurely or with birth defects each year. Premature birth and its complications are the largest contributors to infant death in the United States and globally. Fund the Mission gifts are 100% tax deductible and direct contributions to help the March of Dimes advocate for policies that prioritize the health of moms and babies, fund scientific research at our Prematurity Research Centers, and provide resources and programs to help moms before, during and after pregnancy. During the program there will be an opportunity to make a Fund The Mission donation. Please join the March of Dimes in the fight for healthy moms and strong babies.
Meet Our Cocktail Chair
Brian Nixon started out mixing highballs for his parents and grandparents at a very young age. The folly of those humble beginnings instilled a passion for hospitality in him, and gave him the tools and personality for a career behind the bar. Working at places ranging from rowdy Irish bars to upscale Belgian restaurants, he discovered he had a knack for putting together fun, innovative cocktails. Most recently, Brian tended bar at Le Diplomate and Rose's Luxury, where he exhibited a talent for both marrying flavors and keeping guests entertained. Currently he's the Bar Manager at McClellan's Retreat where he gets to tinker with one of his favorite spirits...whiskey.
Dara Renee Jimenez started in the hospitality industry when she was 14 years old working in the kitchen at her uncle’s restaurant. Her passion for food lead her to a career in restaurants working in Chicago and DC. When she made the move to front of the house, her focus changed to wine and spirits. She is now the Promotional Events Manger for Republic National Distributing Company and her favorite part of the job is being able to participate in local charity events.
Marriott Marquis Room Block!
View our updated event acknowledgements and waivers here.