The James Beard Foundation is postponing the annual James Beard Awards to the summer. The postponement includes the James Beard Media Awards (originally scheduled for Friday, April 24, in New York City), the Leadership Awards (Sunday, May 3, in Chicago), and the Restaurant & Chef Awards (Monday, May 4, in Chicago). As of now, the nominee announcement will be made on March 25 from Philadelphia as scheduled.
"The James Beard Foundation is acutely aware of the health and safety concerns surrounding the current COVID-19 pandemic, " the foundation issued in a statement."We are also mindful of how this virus is negatively impacting the hospitality industry at large, both from a well-being and economic standpoint. As such, our organization has taken the guidance of the CDC, the counsel of our legal advisors and our Board of Trustees, and has worked closely with our partners to make the decision to postpone the annual James Beard Awards to summer 2020."
The statement continued, "Of prime concern is the health and safety of our staff, volunteers, committee members, sponsors, nominees, and all attendees. We also recognize the responsibility of every organization and individual to do what they can to contain the spread of the virus. We will continue to work with our partners in the coming weeks to identify new dates for all three Awards ceremonies, and will work with chefs and others in the industry to navigate the complicated leadership challenges and the economic impact this pandemic may have on their businesses now and in the future. Continue to check https://www.jamesbeard.org/ for updated information and resources."