SYDNEY, February 2014: This year has seen the third annual CEO CookOff 2014 raise more than $1 million for local charities, with funds still climbing.
Since its inception in 2012, the event has raised more than $3 million for local charities with this year’s funds going to three incredible charities including OzHarvest, Tribal Warrior and Life Experiences Foundation.
Monday night (17 February) saw 133 CEOs and business leaders including Qantas CEO Alan Joyce, Shemara Wikranamayake of Macquarie Bank, Michael Wachtel of Ernst & Young, Annabel Spring of CBA and Les Schirato of Vittoria Food & Beverage swap their power frocks and neck ties for kitchen gloves and aprons.
Partnering with 37 of Australia’s top chefs including Neil Perry, Maggie Beer, Matt Moran, Frank Camorra and Guillaume Brahimi, CEOs plated up a three course meal for 1,000 homeless or disadvantaged guests.
Australian singer Dami Im surprised guests with a special performance, as did Brendan Maclean and Glenn Shorrock of the Little River Band.
A joint initiative of OzHarvest and Qantas, the CEO CookOff aims to increase awareness of food security for disadvantaged Australians, with a special focus in 2014 on youth in crisis and Indigenous communities needing assistance.
OzHarvest founder and CEO Ronni Kahn said funds raised will allow her organisation to deliver at least one million additional meals to those in need, ramp up their efforts to provide nutrition education to vulnerable communities and allow them to provide training to disadvantaged youth, in addition to the five million meals that OzHarvest already delivers each year.
‘Food is all about caring, sharing, dignity and respect. It’s an equaliser and a connector and that’s what this event is about,’ said Ronni Kahn.
‘Last night we brought together CEOs and Managing Directors from some of Australia’s leading companies and chefs from Australia’s top restaurants to break bread and share a meal with 1,000 people most vulnerable in our community.’
‘The enormous fundraising efforts will allow us to continue helping those less fortunate.’
Les Schirato CEO of Vittoria Coffee raised a total of $100,020, the highest amount on record raised by an individual for the CEO CookOff. Schirato said, ‘The cooking might be over, but there’s still work to do. I encourage more CEOs to participate and to take on the challenge and exceed my fundraising target in 2015!’
Donations can be received until the end of March 2014.
For images, interviews or photo requests please call:
Liquid Ideas Sylvia Fonseca +61 422 703 607[email protected]
OzHarvest Louise Tran +61 466 620 744 [email protected]
Connect with us via social media: @ozharvest @ceocookoff #ceocookoff