Monday, February 28, 2011

A Great Honor: On Winning a Chicago Trib Good Eating Award

Photograph Courtesy of the Chicago Tribune

As many of you have already seen, last week I was honored with a Chicago Tribune Good Eating award for my work with Purple Asparagus, a non-profit that I founded six years ago. Each year, the paper's Good Eating section "salutes those people in the Chicago-area food and beverage world who are making a difference through their passion, vision and commitment to quality."

I'm not real comfortable with the look-at-me-I'm-so-great kind of post. Therefore, I've been trying to think of a story to write around my receiving this prestigious honor. I was coming up empty until last night's pinnacle of Hollywood's award season when I realized that receiving this award was a great opportunity to publicly thank all of the wonderful folks who've supported Purple Asparagus, a non-profit that educates children, families, and the community about eating that's good for the body and planet. This post is for everyone whose support has made our success possible.

First, a great big thanks go to our board and committees who help raise money to support our programs and provide strategic direction for our organization.

Of course, I also need to thank our many volunteers who assist with programs large and small. Whether it be an hour or a continued commitment, we couldn't do our work without these dedicated and generous individuals.

I have nothing but gratitude for our many varied partners. Since our founding, we've worked with such venerable organizations as Healthy Schools Campaign, the City's Department of Cultural Affairs, Green City Market, the Notebaert Nature Museum, the Shedd Aquarium, and Share Our Strength. With their support, our little underfunded organization has gone further than I could have ever expected.

And like every Oscar winner, I must thank my friends and family, especially Little Locathor and my incredibly supportive husband, Mike.

Finally, I want to thank all of the teachers, parents, and children who've been willing to join us on our Delicious, Nutritious Adventures™. Without your individual leaps of faith, Purple Asparagus would not exist. I hope you'll continue to join us in new adventures for more delicious, nutritious fun.

With gratitude,

Melissa Graham
Head Spear
Purple Asparagus


  1. Congrats! Well deserved!! Just to let you know, you linked to the 2010 awards and so I didn't find you and wondered what I did wrong! :)

  2. Thank YOU Melissa for being an inspiration to so many other healthy eating educators! Congrats!

  3. Melissa, Shawn told Mat about your award. Congratulations. You are working on such an important cause.



  4. Ronnie, Thanks for the kind words. I very much appreciate them!


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