Will Guidara and Anthony Rudolf’s Welcome Conference Sells Out Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall in NYC

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Top: EMP chef Daniel Humm; Karen Page, The Point’s Cameron Karger, Relais & Chateaux’s Brenda Homick, and the Inn at Little Washington’s Patrick O’Connell; Lettuce Entertain You’s Rich Melman and Karen Page; Karen Page, Will Guidara, and Andrew Dornenburg; and Blackberry Farm’s Mary Celeste Beall

“When you love something, the aura of joy surrounds you.”
Rich Melman, beloved Chicago restaurateur at the 2017 Welcome Conference

Eleven Madison Park’s Will Guidara and Journee’s Anthony Rudolf love the restaurant business.

Together, Guidara and Rudolf co-created The Welcome Conference in 2014. With a mission of bringing together the front of the house side of the industry to share best practices and inspire one another, it has since become a not-to-be-missed event for hospitality professionals throughout the U.S., and increasingly beyond.

We’ve attended every single one.  The first was perhaps a couple hundred people in the basement of the Cooper Union downtown.  Yesterday’s fourth annual conference brought together a sold-out crowd of 850 at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, who included chef Michael Anthony, publicist and radio host Shari Bayer, chef Franklin Becker, Ottawa restaurateur Steve Beckta, Agern’s Katie Bell, Maple’s Katina Pappas Dermatas, food writer Meryl Evans, Untitled’s (and, soon, Gramercy Tavern’s) Arjav Ezekiel, restaurateur Georgette Farkas, author Andrew Friedman, Relais & Chateaux’s Brenda Homick, Eleven Madison Park chef Daniel Humm, The Point’s Cameron Karger, chef James Kent, Blue Hill’s Grace Nguyen, restaurateur Drew Nieporent, the Inn at Little Washington’s Patrick O’Connell, writer Paula Prentiss, Karen’s fellow Dame Lynne Ryan, chef Hillary Sterling, etiquette-and-BBQ expert Amy Mills Tunnecliffe and her son Guy Tunnecliffe, and Del Posto’s Marta Variara. 

Our thanks to yesterday’s speakers — who included Soul Cycle’s Melanie Whelan, Union Square Cafe’s Sam Lipp, Dr. John Medina, Frank Guidara, Blackberry Farm’s Mary Celeste Beall, Antoine’s Charles Carter, Husk’s Sean Brock, Waffle House’s Mel, Mojo, and Sharifa; hostage negotiator Gary Noesner, Drive Change’s Jordyn Lexton, Momofuku’s David Chang, and Lettuce Entertain You’s Richard Melman  for sharing their ideas and insights.

And our heartfelt congratulations to Will and Anthony on organizing (with the help of Aaron Ginsberg and the amazing Sandra Di Capua) a day filled with positive energy, wisdom, and inspiration galore!

Top row: Co-founder Will Guidara, and conference guests; 2nd row: Karen Page with author Andrew Friedman; Andrew Dornenburg with conference guests; The Point’s Cameron Karger, Karen Page, and Ottawa’s Steve Beckta; 3rd row: Waffle House made waffles onsite, enjoyed by restaurateur Drew Nieporent with guests from Open Table; 4th row: Andrew Dornenburg with Agern’s Katie Bell; guest curator Brian Canlis with co-founder Anthony Rudolf; Karen Page with three waitresses from the Charleston Waffle House; and Andrew Dornenburg with Shari Bayer, who won a trip for 2 to Blackberry Farm in her lunchbox

The Welcome Conference was held Monday, June 5, 2017, at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall in New York City.  Ticket sales are announced a few months in advance, so visit its website in early 2018 to discover the on-sale date for the fifth annual conference to be held in June 2018: thewelcomeconference.com.

Categorized: New York City