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The Family Reunion Continues Enriching Growth

(Middleburg, VA; August 23, 2023)  This past weekend, The Family Reunion celebrated its slate of culturally rich programming at an inspiring and inclusive gathering at Salamander Middleburg.

Helmed by some of the industry’s most talented chefs, the event firmly established itself as of the premier culinary events in the country. Presented by Chef and Author Kwame Onwuachi in collaboration with Sheila Johnson’s Salamander Collection and FOOD & WINE, the multi-day event returned for a third year at Johnson’s Forbes Five-Star-rated resort. The sold-out event has become one the most in-demand on the culinary circuit – lauded by guests and talent alike for its energetic and unique approach.

The mission of The Family Reunion is to nurture, develop and celebrate racial and ethnic diversity within the next generation of hospitality professionals. The August 17-20 event, which benefitted Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry Campaign, provided thought-provoking panel discussions, topical cooking demonstrations, and inspiring recreational activities led by culinary celebrities. Additionally, each day showcased a family-style lunch, a signature evening dining event, and a series of Afterglow Party events.

Evening entertainment included Juvenile and Joe, while The Family Reunion’s exceptional 46-strong roster of talent included the returning Kwame Onwuachi, Nyesha Arrington, Mashama Bailey, Rodney Scott, Carla Hall, Gregory Gourdet, Tavel Bristol-Joseph, Alexander Smalls, Andre Fowles, Bryan Furman, Virginia Ali, Melba Wilson, Douglass Williams, Osei “Chef Picky” Blackett, Jessica B. Harris, Jamila Robinson, Lamar Moore, Maya-Camille Broussard, Nina Oduro, Erick Williams, Jonny Rhodes, Robin McBride, Pete Smith, JR Robinson, Julia Coney, Nadine Brown, Peter Prime, Martel Stone, Rashida Holmes, Tahiirah Habibi, Preston Clark, Shorne Benjamin, Tiffany Derry and Vallery Lomas. Incredible additions for 2023 feature Adrienne Cheatham, Damarr Brown, David and Tony Thomas, Tiana Gee, Toni Tipton-Martin, Justin Sutherland, Brian Jupiter, Bryan Ford, Mawa McQueen and Serigne Mbaye.

In addition to Sheila Johnson, the Salamander Collection and FOOD & WINE, the 2023 event enjoyed partnership support from Wells Fargo, Brown-Forman, Virginia Tourism Corporation, United Airlines, Amazon, Coca-Cola, Lexus, McBride Sisters Collection, Inspire, Zigma World, McEnearney Associates Realtors, Visit Loudoun, AmaWaterways and New Belgium Brewing.  

The only African American woman to wholly own a Forbes Five-Star resort, Sheila Johnson is renowned for co-founding Black Entertainment Television. She is marking the 10-year anniversary of her Middleburg resort with the publication of her memoir Walk Through Fire. In addition to collaborating on The Family Reunion, Johnson and Kwame Onwuachi are also partnering to create a vibrant new restaurant at the recently branded Salamander Washington DC hotel. Onwuachi, who owns the acclaimed Tatiana in New York City, has penned multiple books like his successful memoir Notes from a Young Black Chef and the bestselling cookbook My America: Recipes from a Young Black Chef.

The Family Reunion is part of the FOOD & WINE Classic network of events anchored by the renowned FOOD & WINE Classic in Aspen, a mainstay in the culinary world which celebrated its 40th anniversary this year.

To see the full Family Reunion schedule, visit and/or review the numerous event videos on Instagram at @salamanderresort, @salamanderhotels, @foodandwine and @chefkwameonwuachi.

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About the Salamander Collection

The Salamander Collection is privately owned and operated, and based in Middleburg, VA, just outside Washington, D.C. Founded by entrepreneur Sheila Johnson, Salamander has a unique hospitality approach that is welcoming, personal, and treats guests as if they are returning home. The collection features the Forbes Five-Star Salamander Middleburg, an equestrian-inspired property in the Virginia countryside; Salamander Washington DC, an elegant hotel located along the capital’s vibrant Southwest waterfront; Half Moon, the storied resort in Montego Bay, Jamaica, featuring three distinct experiences including the acclaimed Eclipse; the newly renovated and reimagined Aurora Anguilla Resort & Golf Club, located along two miles of pristine beach on Rendezvous Bay, Anguilla; Aspen Meadows Resort, which features newly renovated Herbert Bayer-inspired accommodations and sweeping views on 40 beautiful acres in Aspen, CO.; Hotel Bennett, a spectacular grand hotel in Charleston, SC, overlooking the city’s historic Marion Square; and Innisbrook Resort in the St. Petersburg/Clearwater area, which hosts the PGA TOUR’s Valspar Championship each year on its famed Copperhead Course.


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