Les Dames d’Escoffier International – Birmingham Chapter
2018 Scholarship, Award & Grant Recipients

The Birmingham Chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier International has been pleased to offer annual scholarships for education and continuing education grants to female applicants pursuing culinary or pastry arts, farming, beverage management, hospitality, nutrition and dietetics, or agriculture coursework.

2018 Scholarship Recipients

Ally Cound

Ally Cound, a junior nutrition major at Auburn University, was one of our 2018 scholarship recipients. She is committed to learning about food and nutrition and how best to educate communities on better food choices. While at @auburnu, Ally has taken several horticulture and global geography courses, enhancing her knowledge of the food-to-table trend. Ally was also awarded the Auburn University Abroad Scholarship and spent three weeks in Italy this summer studying the Mediterranean Diet.

Rebecca Klang

Rebecca Klang, a baking and pastry major at Jefferson State Community College, is another one of our 2018 scholarship recipients. She also has a degree in business management from UAB. Rebecca is a cake decorator and baker at Louise’s Cakes and Supply and has expanded the cake decorating classes and children’s birthday party segments of the business.

Hope Etheridge

Hope Etheridge is a junior nutrition and dietetics major at Samford University. She is active in many campus societies and serves on the junior board of the Alabama Dietetic Association. Her interest in food is to learn how families can benefit from healthy food choices.

Sydney Smith

Sydney Smith, a junior nutrition and dietetics major at Samford University, is another one of our 2018 scholarship recipients. She is in several student organizations and honor societies and volunteers at the Christian Service Mission and at the Center for Eating Disorders. Sydney was awarded funds from @samfordu Student Government Association to develop healthy cooking classes for undergraduates on campus.

2018 Grant Recipients

Lauren Bolding

Lauren Bolding is a certified ProStart teacher at Albertville High School and a recipient of one of this year’s teacher grants. She has had a culinary arts team compete at the National ProStart Competition in 2015, 2017, and 2018. ProStart is a two-year high school program that reaches almost 140,000 students nationwide. The hands-on curriculum provides practical, real-life experience, from culinary techniques to management skills, that gives students a solid foundation to pursue careers in the culinary arts.

Diann Pilgrim

Diann Pilgrim is a family and consumer sciences teacher at Wenonah High School in southwest Birmingham and recipient of one of this year’s teacher grants. She is a certified ProStart teacher and has had teams compete at the state level in 2016 and 2017.

Melissa Allphin

Melissa Allphin is a certified ProStart culinary arts teacher at Moody High School and a recipient of one of this year’s teacher grants. Melissa has had a culinary arts team compete at the National ProStart Competition every year since 2015.

2018 Award Recipients

Nancey Legg

Nancey Legg, the owner of Better Kombucha, was the 2018 recipient of our Entrepreneur Award. Her company’s kombucha—a tangy, fizzy, tart-sweet, probiotic-rich drink is made from fermented tea that’s often flavored with fruit and fruit juice—is bottled right here in Birmingham. Legg plans to use the grant to purchase a new fermenter to help further expand her business.

Jones Valley Teaching Farm

Jones Valley Teaching Farm was the 2018 recipient of our Non-Profit Organization Award—its downtown farm campus is also the site of Southern Soirée. Jones Valley Teaching Farm operates Good School Food, a food-based education program for students PreK through 12 that utilizes hands-on, experiential lessons that help bring math, science, social studies, and English language arts to life. The lessons and projects use food as the foundation for learning.