Page 36 - May 2021 Barbecue News Magazine
P. 36

 NBBQA: Where do you see BBQ going as a cuisine especially for women in this industry?
AK: BBQ for BLD&E! Meaning, inspiring ladies and of course men, to think BBQ for everyday grocery lists and a delicious alternative for breakfast, lunch, dinner and entertaining friends and family! This is our passionate mission.
AJ: I really struggle with this question. Why would the future of the BBQ cuisine be different for women? Why wouldn't the men AND women of BBQ work together to expand BBQ culture. Whether you call it BBQ'ing, smoking or grilling, it all boils down to our love of live fire cooking. We have seen food sport, food TV and social media bring BBQ into the homes of millions of people, who are now less intimidated to fire up their grill and try their hand after seeing how the champions do it. If the cuisine is ex- panding, it's because the general public is catching our passion and want to be a part of it.
JP: I don't believe that gender shapes the cuisine, whether male or female.
Honestly, the important message here is that individual minds, individual talent and individual creativity will keep pushing BBQ and grilling curves. Whether that talent belongs to a man or woman is a moot point - true tal- ent will shine through.
RL: I think Pellet Smoking has been really instrumental in getting more women grilling because it eliminates the whole “starting of the grill” process. When I first started GrillGirl I started hosting “Women’s Grilling Clinics” to empower other women to learn how to grill. At my clinics, many of the women said the main reason they weren’t grilling was because they were afraid to light the grill. With Pellet Smokers, that step is taken out of the equation because they are literally as easy as starting an oven while also introducing women to the intoxicating aroma of smoke flavor. I see lots more creativity coming off the grill now that more women are experi- menting with smoke. I see Pellet Smoking as women’s “gateway grill” as they fall in love with smoke flavor and the experience of grilling and of course, the awesome BBQ community. My hope is that this new found love for grilling will spill into all kinds of cooking over fire and not just limited to pellet smoking.
 A Word From Our President
Thank you to the NBBQA board members for allowing me to serve as the association’s President for 2021-2022. It is an honor and blessing to work side-by-side with our current, and soon to be, new board members and to lead this wonderful association. I look forward to the opportunities ahead as we build partnerships with members,
businesses, and sponsors to help elevate the BBQ industry as a whole and become the re- source for all things BBQ.
My background in the BBQ industry, and with Sonny’s BBQ, has equipped me for this time. I have been with Sonny’s BBQ for 25 years where I have played vital roles in training, public relations, franchisee rela- tions, event management, and operations. I fell in love with NBBQA at my first confer- ence in Alabama in 2012. I came only to sup- port our local franchisee who was on the BBQ tour and presenting a catering session.
I left hooked and have been dedicating my time and efforts to give back to this great as- sociation ever since.
Fundraising and brand awareness for the
NBBQA will continue to be a focal point so
we can continure our journey for another 30 years. Decisions are not made alone. I will work closely with the board to foster our ideas and efforts. In
addition to our Awards of Excellence Program and Membership drives, we will look for other ways to bring members together. This will allow our participants to learn, grow, and build vital relationships that will maintain stability for the business of BBQ and grilling. If we have learned anything
over the past year, it’s be flexible and any- thing is possible.
My mission in life, at Sonny’s BBQ, and now for NBBQA, is to break down the invisible barriers we build based on our own percep- tions of how things should be. We want to honor and respect our history while looking forward to our future. We need to recognize the legends who came before us, utilizing their expertise to mentor and lead the gen- eration to come. This must be done hand-in- hand with a desire to embrace change and work through potential differences.
The success and future of our industry lies in the involvement and deep commitment from each one of us. As we overcome past obstacles, look to improve current chal- lenges, and pave the way for those entering the BBQ culture, I hope you will join me in
embracing all we can be as an association. I challenge us all to give more than you get, to be involved rather than sit back, and to look forward in- stead of looking back. Your board will work hard to bring you the latest advances available in the BBQ industry, plus speakers, businesses, and partners to keep us up-to-date. We will give you opportunities that allow you to be as successful as you choose.
The networking among members, as well as the friendships developed, are what we all miss from this past year. We hope to be able to bring you events soon. We are truly better together.
Barbara Latimer
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Memberships start at $99 per year - 36 MAY 2021

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