OAKLAND, Calif., April 26, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Kingsford® announced the selection of its inaugural class of the Preserve the Pit™ Fellowship. This group of barbecue professionals will receive a grant along with immersive training and one-on-one mentorship with industry leaders throughout 2021 to turn their business aspirations into a reality.
Kingsford launched Preserve the Pit on January 25, 2021 and received nearly 1,000 applications during the application period. Kingsford and its Mentor Network – made up of industry leaders Kevin Bludso, Dr. Howard Conyers, Devita Davison, Bryan Furman, Rashad Jones and Amy Mills – selected the 2021 class of fellows based on a variety of factors including, but not limited to, their connection to barbecue, contributions to the legacy of the Black barbecue community and commitments to fueling its future.
"We are blown away by the interest in Preserve the Pit and the passion that was conveyed by applicants for strengthening the Black barbecue community," said Shaunte Mears-Watkins, vice president of strategy and marketing for Kingsford. "The selected fellows are motivated to begin their experience as a Preserve the Pit fellow, and we're happy to be able to support them throughout their journey."
The inaugural class of the Preserve the Pit Fellowship are:
- Cory & Tarra Davis – Grand Rapids, Mich.: Owners of Daddy Pete's BBQ since 2012, Cory and Tarra Davis have a passion for barbecue that they share with their friends, family and community. Through the fellowship, their goal is to build a stronger foundation for their business operations to ensure their restaurant continues to successfully operate beyond their generation.
- Chef Shalamar Lane – Carson, Calif.: As the head chef and owner of My Father's Barbeque, Shalamar brings southern hospitality to California by using delicious barbecue as a way to bring people together. As a result of the mentorship, she hopes to improve her management skills to further her business' success and continue to teach her employees and community about the history of barbecue.
- Ronald Simmons – Kenansville, N.C.: Ronald and his family own Master Blend Family Farms, LLC, which provides whole hogs and premium pork products to restaurants and private owned businesses in his community. They've hosted farm tours in collaboration with several local schools and hope to transition one of the farms, which has been in the family for over a century, into a farm school and develop a whole hog barbecue station to share their heritage of barbecue and create a path of opportunity for future generations.
Due to the high volume of inspiring Preserve the Pit applicants, Kingsford expanded the program and selected ten additional recipients to each receive a $7,500 grant. This grant can be used at the applicant's discretion to continue preserving the culture and history of Black barbecue in America and fueling its future. These recipients are:
- Melissa Cottingham – Melnificent Wingz (Los Angeles, Calif.)
- Aaron Gonerway – Plates By the Pound BBQ (Denver, Colo.)
- Pamela Henry – Pam's Magic Cauldron (Smyrna, Ga.)
- Daniel Hammond – Smoky Soul Barbecue Chicago (Chicago, Ill.)
- Brandon Norman – Memphis Original BBQ (Atoka, Tenn.)
- Demetris R. – Making The CuTX (Newport, Vt.)
- Erica Roby – Blue Smoke Blaire (Dayton, Ohio)
- Christopher Simmons – The Qulinary Oasis BBQ (DeSoto, Texas)
- Gerald Vinnett – Big Papi's Smokehouse (Destrehan, La.)
- Eddie Wright– Eddie Wright BBQ (Jackson, Miss.)
The Clorox Company (NYSE: CLX) is a leading multinational manufacturer and marketer of consumer and professional products with about 8,800 employees worldwide and fiscal year 2020 sales of $6.7 billion. Clorox markets some of the most trusted and recognized consumer brand names, including its namesake bleach and cleaning products; Pine-Sol® cleaners; Liquid-Plumr® clog removers; Poett® home care products; Fresh Step® cat litter; Glad® bags and wraps; Kingsford® grilling products; Hidden Valley® dressings and sauces; Brita® water-filtration products; Burt's Bees® natural personal care products; and RenewLife®, Rainbow Light®, Natural Vitality Calm™, NeoCell® and Stop Aging Now® vitamins, minerals and supplements. The company also markets industry-leading products and technologies for professional customers, including those sold under the CloroxPro™ and Clorox Healthcare® brand names. More than 80% of the company's sales are generated from brands that hold the No. 1 or No. 2 market share positions in their categories.
Clorox is a signatory of the United Nations Global Compact and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation's New Plastics Economy Global Commitment. The company has been broadly recognized for its corporate responsibility efforts, listed No. 1 on the 2020 Axios Harris Poll 100 reputation rankings and included on the Barron's 2021 100 Most Sustainable Companies list, 2021 Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index and the Human Rights Campaign's 2021 Corporate Equality Index, among others. In support of its communities, The Clorox Company and its foundations contributed more than $25 million in combined cash grants, product donations and cause marketing in fiscal year 2020. For more information, visit TheCloroxCompany.com, including the Good Growth blog, and follow the company on Twitter at @CloroxCo. CLX-B
Contact: Jordyn Volk, (415) 262-5980, [email protected]
SOURCE Kingsford Charcoal