Howard Schultz, Ceo, Starbucks
There is no more iconic CEO in this country than Howard Schultz. The green and white logo is in 75 countries and 28-thousand stores around the world, but it is the story of how it all started and the lessons learned along the way that is so remarkable. Howard takes us to his favorite Seattle restaurant Mamnoon, a Middle Eastern restaurant known for flavors so good "they'll make you cry." This restaurant is the backdrop for Howard to tell us about the heart and soul of his company and his future mission in the world.
Jason Mayden, Designer, Nike
When Jason Mayden grew up on the South Side of Chicago, he dreamed of being like Michael Jordan. Instead, he went on to design shoes for him. His Nike Air Monarch became the highest grossing shoe of all time. Jason takes us to Giordano's Deep Dish pizza to tell us why this Chicago comfort food staple is also symbolic of why he loves this city and how it fueled his imagination and dreams. Jason's neighborhood is one of the most dangerous in the city yet he believes the perceived negative aspects became strategic advantages for him in business and life.
Leila Janah, Social Entrepreneur, Samasource
She has been named Forbes "30 under 30", Fast Company's "Most Creative People in Business" and Fortune Magazine's "Most Promising Entrepreneurs". Leila Janah started a non-profit with $14,000 she won in a business plan competition. Her goal was to reduce global poverty by putting people into jobs where they could earn a living wage. Her company Samasource does just that. Leila takes us to her favorite San Francisco spot, the Samovar Tea House, to eat local, sustainable and socially conscious food and share why this food is the fuel she needs to continue her mission of ending world poverty.
Jim McIngvale, Philanthropist, Gallery Furniture
When Jim started his mattress business in Houston, Texas he had just $5,000 and a pickup truck. Now, he has amassed a furniture empire through his "wacky ads" and gregarious personality. It was, however, a single act of kindness that thrust him into the international spotlight. During Hurricane Harvey, he opened the doors of all of his stores to displaced residents, earning him local adoration and international cheers. We go with Jim to his favorite Mexican restaurant, Lopez Family restaurant, to eat fajitas and hear the story of how any local businessman can make a tremendous social impact.
Jose Andres, Chef and Philanthropist
Spanish born chef Jose Andres achieved the American dream by creating a restaurant empire that stretches across the country and the globe. Recently though, Jose's efforts have been focused on philanthropy and outreach. When Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, Jose and his team landed and immediately started cooking. In a short amount of time, they had fed a million people. Inspired by the flavors of his youth, Jose takes us back to where it all began for him. We dine at Bodega 1900 in Barcelona to talk about the simple flavors of Spanish tapas that sparked a love and passion for cooking and the roots of great hospitality.
Jessica Alba, Actress and Founder of The Honest Company
Jessica Alba had already become a successful Hollywood actress when she decided to start her own business. She never dreamed it would be so tough to begin. Even though she received many rejections and faced much disbelief in her ability, she persevered. Now her eco-conscious baby products company, The Honest Company is valued at more than a Billion dollars. Jessica takes us to her favorite West Hollywood restaurant, Night + Market to dine on the hottest new Thai restaurant and tell us more about her commitment to eco-friendly, sustainable, and recognizable ingredients and why this company is just the beginning.
Emily Giffin, New York Times Bestselling Author
Emily Giffin did a complete U-turn in her career when a career as a corporate lawyer left her unsatisfied. She pursued her dream of being a writer. Her ability to write complex, fascinating and flawed characters has landed her on the New York Times best-seller list. She has written not one but eight best-selling novels and has developed a cult like following of devotees. Emily takes us to her favorite Seafood restaurant in Atlanta to eat the food she loves and talk about the anatomy of a best-selling page-turner.
Norman Lear, Television Producer
Norman Lear is a World War II veteran as well as a television producing icon. He is the creator of such legendary sitcoms as All in the Family, Good Times, Sanford and Son, The Jeffersons and many, many more. Norman has been instrumental in the creating and the success of so many Hollywood professionals, yet his biggest contribution is the discussion his work has sparked. Norman takes us to his favorite restaurant in the heart of LA, Crossroads, to talk about what makes a great meal and a great TV show.
Kavita Shukla, Inventor, Fenugreen
Kavita holds four patents for a world changing invention that does one simple thing: extend the life of produce. After a trip to visit her grandmother in her native India, she developed a recipe for a paper that would stop the spoilage of food. Her work is revolutionizing the world's food supply especially in the poorest pockets of the globe. Kavita takes us to Great Sage restaurant in Clarksville, Maryland just minutes from where she grew up in Maryland. The perfectly seasoned Spinach curry is a reminder of who she is and where she came from. We feast on her favorite dishes and talk about how this invention is just the beginning of growing a world changing empire.
Jessica Alba, Actress and Founder of The Honest Company
At 29 years old, this young tech dynamo has done something thousands of others twice her age have tried and failed. Her website, TheMuse. com, helps people find the perfect job. She started with one person in her living room and she has grown the company to 50 million visitors every month. In this episode of To Dine For, we go with her to her favorite restaurant, Izakaya Nomad, in the heart of Manhattan. Izakaya is a Japanese gastro-pub known for its delicious grilled meats, fresh sushi and a closing time of 2 a.m. Kathryn explains how she was able to take "a great idea," raise millions of dollar in capital and turn her concept into a premier destination for Millennials to find jobs.
Sara Blakely, Inventor, Founder and Ceo of Spanx
With 5,000 dollars and a simple idea, Sara Blakely invented a product that would change the fashion industry forever. As the Inventor and CEO of Spanx, Sara became the youngest self-made Billionaire in the world. With no fashion experience and no business degree, her story of grit, persistence, and problem solving is one of the most interesting business stories of our time. Over artfully prepared sushi and sashimi at Umi in Atlanta, Sara tells us how she did it and how she is paving the way for a new generation of female inventors and entrepreneurs.
Kevin Kwan, Author of Crazy Rich Asians
Born into an incredibly wealthy Singaporean family, Kevin Kwan came to the United States to attend college in Houston. His life took many different creative roads before he was inspired to pen the book, "Crazy Rich Asians" based on his family's life back in Singapore. The New York Times best-selling novel became a cultural phenomenon and the first movie starring an all Asian cast in 25 years. Kevin was named by TIME Magazine as one of the most influential people in the world. Over garlic noodles at Beverly Hills restaurant Crustacean, Kevin talks about the roots of creativity, the long road to success and what kind of impact Kevin hopes to make in the future.
M. Night Shyamalan, Director
As Writer and Director of blockbuster hit movies such as "The Sixth Sense" and "Unbreakable", Night has been able to hone the craft of 'scaring the living daylights" of moviegoers with his suspenseful and often terrifying flicks. He has undoubtedly reached careers highs and dramatic career lows. At his favorite restaurant in Philadelphia acclaimed restaurant Vetri Cucina, Night dishes on how to stay on the creative cutting-edge and what he hopes his legacy is in life and film.
Gitanjali Rao, Inventor
At the age of just 11 years old, Gitanjali dreamed up a solution to a problem many had overlooked. Inspired by watching the news coverage of the Flint, Michigan water crisis, Gitanjali invented a water treatment device that Flint residents could use in their homes to see if their water is safe. This invention has won her numerous national and international awards and accolades. Over Mexican comfort food, Gitanjali shares the basics of innovation and creativity and inspires us all to look more closely at big world problems in a more resourceful way.
Katori Hall, Playwright
Columbia, Harvard and Juilliard educated, Katori Hall planned to be an actress until a fateful assignment at Harvard changed her direction. Instead, she became a playwright. Her play, The Mountaintop, about the final night before Martin Luther King's assassination, won critical acclaim making her the first black woman to win the Olivier Award for Best New Play. Over the tropical flavors of Jamaican dishes, Katori shares how she creates complex characters and how her mission is to be a voice for the disenfranchised and marginalized voices in America.
Erik Weihenmayer, Athlete
Erik Weihenmayer became the first blind man to ever summit Mount Everest. His achievement put him on the cover of TIME magazine and brought him International acclaim. Turns out that achievement would be just the launching pad for a life of service and commitment to helping thousands of people overcome whatever holds them back in life. As the director of non-profit No Barriers, Erik works directly with people who either are disabled mentally or physically. Over the fascinating flavors of the Himalayan mountains, Erik shares his journey from outdoor-enthusiast to one of the world's most sought-after speakers and what it really means to live a life with "No Barriers."
Blake Mycoskie, Founder of Toms
From the majestic Teton Mountains, we hear the story of the man who defined what it means to be a "social entrepreneur". Blake Mycoskie founded TOMS shoes because of a need he saw in impoverished neighborhoods around the world: shoes. His "one for one" business model of donating a pair of shoes for every pair sold has been copied and recreated in thousands of iterations and has been studied by many. Amidst a crackling fire and over delicious "minute steaks" at the Snake River Grille, Blake shares the soul of an entrepreneur and the project that has re-ignited his spirit.
Deepak Chopra, Author and Spiritual Teacher
New York Times best-selling author Deepak Chopra is a medical doctor by trade but he is best known for his work to get people to live a life of greater consciousness. His devotion to mental wellness and well-being is at the center of his work, his teachings and his speaking engagements. Over sustainable farm-to- table lunch, Deepak shares how he brings an idea to execution through the power of the mind. This enlightening conversation is both nourishing for the mind and spirit.
Jake Wood, Founder of Team Rubicon
Jake Wood is a former Marine who used his military training to create and lead a non-profit called Team Rubicon. He won the 2018 Pat Tillman awared for service at the ESPY awards and has written a book Take Command: Lessons in Leadership: How to be a First Responder in Business. Over burgers and beer and cheese curds, Jake talks about his passion to put Veterans back to work and harness their military training to serve and help those in disaster areas across the world.
Ashley Longshore, Artist
Ashley Longshore is a Louisiana based painter and gallery owner. Her art is centered around Hollywood Glamour and American consumerism and has been compared to Andy Warhol. With millions of fans and celebrity followers, Ashley shows us what it means to march to a different beat. Over the Indian flavors of New-Orleans, Louisiana spot Saffron, Ashley talks about creating her Art and how she believes Art can truly change the world.