(Washington, D.C.) The National Restaurant Association has recognized Farrelli’s Wood Fire Pizza in Tacoma, Wash., with the 2010 Restaurant Neighbor Award in the mid-size business category. The restaurant company was presented the award and a $5,000 donation during a ceremony in Washington, D.C. this weekend. The award celebrates the philanthropic spirit of the restaurant industry. American Express is the founding partner of the Restaurant Neighbor Award.
“Community service comes naturally to our industry, and we are so pleased to present some of the most inspiring examples of philanthropy with our Restaurant Neighbor Award,” said National Restaurant Association President and CEO Dawn Sweeney. “Farrelli’s Wood Fire Pizza is a great example of how guests and neighbors can serve as inspiration for a restaurant’s community service activities. A community works together to create a better place to live and work, and Farrelli’s has wholeheartedly embraced that philosophy.”
“We have a long tradition of family-run restaurants in Washington, and Farrelli’s is a shining example of how to extend that family to include members of the community,” said Anthony Anton, President and CEO of the Washington Restaurant Association. “The Farrell family has opened their hearts through their business and made a difference in people’s lives.”
Farrelli’s Wood Fire Pizza has a long arm when it comes to reaching out to the communities that support its restaurants, especially those made up by servicemen and women. The pizza chain sent signs, uniforms and other gear with the restaurant’s name to soldiers in Iraq, who transformed their break area into a satellite Farrelli’s. The restaurant also celebrates the soldiers with weekly discounts and parties before they deploy and return from overseas.
Customers also help the restaurant determine which organizations to help. After a customer with Type 1 diabetes was unable to find menu options that fit his diet, Farrelli’s developed a wholegrain pizza that was added to the menu, called Elliott’s Pizza. Farrelli’s also participates in the Dining for Diabetes fundraiser for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
Farrelli’s was founded by Jacque Farrell, together with her mother and father in 1995. They own five pizzerias and the Irish-inspired McNamara’s Pub & Eatery. Farrelli’s has raised more than $150,000 for organizations such as the Muscular Dystrophy Association, Susan G. Komen Foundation and the local Boys and Girls Club.
“American Express is proud to partner with the National Restaurant Association to honor the contributions restaurateurs across the country make to their communities,” said Curtis L. Wilson, Vice President and General Manager, Restaurant and Lodging Industries, American Express. “Through charitable gifts of food, time, and resources, restaurants have a tangible and lasting impact on their communities; we hope these actions inspire others to do the same.”
The National Restaurant Association and founding partner American Express developed the Restaurant Neighbor Award to raise awareness about the restaurant industry’s contributions in local communities across the country and to inspire other restaurant operators and owners to make even greater contributions in their communities.
The Restaurant Neighbor Award honors charitable contributions in four categories (small business, mid-size business, large business/national chain, and Cornerstone Humanitarian). Each participating state restaurant association selects winners in their respective states that compete with winners from other states for the national award.
Joining Farrelli’s Wood Fire Pizza in receiving the 2010 Restaurant Neighbor Award are: Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, headquartered in Greenwood Village, Colo., with locations nationwide, in the large business category; UNION Restaurant and Bar Latino in Haverstraw, N.Y., in the small business category; and Danny Meyer of Union Square Hospitality Group in New York City in the Cornerstone Humanitarian category.
For more information on the award program, as well as more information on national winners and state finalists, visit the National Restaurant Association’s website, www.restaurant.org.
Founded in 1919, the National Restaurant Association is the leading business association for the restaurant industry, which comprises more than 1 million restaurant and foodservice outlets and a workforce of 14.4 million employees. We represent the industry in Washington, D.C., and advocate on its behalf. We operate the industry's largest trade show (NRA Show May 20-23, 2017, in Chicago); leading food safety training and certification program (ServSafe); unique career-building high school program (the NRAEF's ProStart); as well as the Kids LiveWell program promoting healthful kids' menu options. For more information, visit Restaurant.org and find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.