The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) recently honored its 2013 “Faces of Diversity American Dream” award winners. The “Faces of Diversity American Dream” award, sponsored by PepsiCo Foodservice, is given to diverse members of the restaurant industry who have, through hard work and perseverance, achieved the American Dream.
As a child, Miguel Valdez and his family struggled against poverty, crime, drugs and an abusive father. He overcame a learning disability to work his way up from delivering pizzas to working as a line cook and eventually serving as executive chef at the Red Door Restaurant and the Wellington Steak and Martini Lounge. Valdez spends hundreds of hours cooking for charities and volunteering to teach low-income mothers to prepare healthy, cost-effective meals.