We are pleased to announce our speakers for #FBC2014. Please check back regularly as we fill our speaker roster over the coming months!
FBC2014 Keynote: Robin Esrock – Author, Broadcaster & Traveler
Robin Esrock is a bestselling author, award-winning journalist, blogger and international broadcaster.
He is the creator and host of the 40-part series Word Travels, seen weekly on CityTV and OLN in Canada, on National Geographic in over 50 countries, and on Travel Channel in 21 languages worldwide. He also created the award-winning adventure-culinary show Get Stuffed (OLN/CityTV/Nat Geo Adventure). Robin has been a travel columnist for The Globe & Mail, MSN, Bell, Outpost, and the Vancouver Sun, and his stories have been published in over a dozen major publications worldwide, including National Geographic Traveler, The Chicago Tribune, The Guardian, South China Morning Post, Sydney Morning Herald and Dallas Morning News.
Robin has been profiled by, among others, the CBC, CTV, Global, CNN, METRO, Forbes Travel and Travel and Leisure. He was Master of Ceremonies for the prestigious Explorer’s Club Annual Dinner in New York, sharing the stage with the likes of Buzz Aldrin and Ken Burns, and spoke at the world’s largest ever TEDx event.
Having travelled to over 100 countries, Robin’s bestselling book – The Great Canadian Bucket List – is a personal journey to discover the best experiences his adopted home Canada has to offer. Born and raised in South Africa, he lives in Vancouver, BC with his wife and daughter. Twitter: @RobinEsrock, YouTube: Modern Gonzo.
Shauna James Ahern is the author of the cookbook, Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef, named one of the best cookbooks of 2010 by The New York Times, and the food memoir, Gluten-Free Girl. She is also the author, photographer, and head baker at Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef, her much-loved food website (www.glutenfreegirl.com), which she creates with her chef husband, Daniel Ahern. Her work has been published or recognized by The New York Times, Gourmet, Bon Appetit, Epicurious, Babble, The Guardian, Gilt Taste, CNN’s Eatocracy, and The Washington Post. Her latest cookbook, Gluten-Free Girl Everyday, recently won a James Beard award for excellence. She and her husband, with their two children, live on Vashon Island, WA, where they are probably cooking something as you read this.
Matt Armendariz is a photographer, writer, avid traveler and blogger that specializes in food, drink and tasty spots all over the world. His food blog, www.mattbites.com, was voted as one of the Top 10 Food Blogs in the World by London’s Times Online and has also been selected by GOOP’s Gwyneth Paltrow as one of her 10 favorites food blogs.
Mattbites focuses on all things flavorful and has been recognized by The New York Times, New York Magazine, Los Angeles Times, LA Weekly, Saveur, Bon Appetit, Gourmet, Everyday With Rachael Ray as well as tastemakers like Tori Burch, Grace Bonney of Design*Sponge, Rachael Ray and a variety of food and lifestyle editors. With appearances on The Martha Stewart Show, Paula Deen’s Best Dishes, Gordon Ramsay’s Hell Kitchen, Cooking Channel’s Summer’s Best Cocktails and a variety of speaking engagements, Matt’s motto is that he’s a “man obsessed with food, drink and everything in between.”
As a professional food photographer, his work as appeared in the pages of Bon Appetit, Country Living, Time Magazine, Coastal Living, Martha Stewart Everyday Food, as well as online for Food Network, Cooking Channel, and Food & Wine. Advertising clients include Cola Cola, Chiquita Banana, California Avocados, La Brea Bakery, Pom Wonderful, Fiji Water, Whole Foods Market, and Target. Matt’s also photographed numerous cookbooks for Wiley, Random House, Ten Speed Press, Quirk, Focal Press, and Chronicle Books.
Duncan Clark is Vice President, Strategic Initiatives for Postmedia Network Inc. His career in media has included stops at six different newspapers across three provinces, the relaunches of nationalpost.com in 2007 and 2010, the founding of two magazines, and two seasons as the radio colour analyst for a major junior hockey team in Cranbrook, B.C. His experience in the newsroom as an Executive Editor along with his Digital Media experience in Product Development and Business Development have paved the way for his strategic insight in his latest ventures.
Currently he’s in charge of the startup-inspired skunkworks office Postmedia Labs, home of Gastropost, Capital Ideas, EachCoach and The Afterword Reading Society.
As the Editor of FBC, Melissa reviews every single FBC member blog application (1,300 and counting!) and is constantly scouring the web for potential contributors and speakers with fresh, focused voices. As a designer, she has worked with many bloggers to help them establish their branding and blogs. It’s safe to say she’s read more blogs than can be counted! She has a unique perspective on what works, what doesn’t and what stands out. Melissa is a co-founder and Managing Director of FBC, and runs her own web and graphic design studio, Fine Lime Designs. She is also a freelance food photographer and blogs about food photography at Eyes Bigger Than My Stomach. She lives near the ocean, just outside of Vancouver, with a goofy lab named SamTheDog.
As business manager for freelancers, visual artists, and entrepreneurs, Corwin cares about the ‘why’ and the ‘how’ of making a life, and a living, from one’s creativity. Through his boutique firm (Taendem Agency) Corwin provides management and marketing services to creative talent such as world-renowned photographer, publisher, and best-selling author David duChemin.
Corwin is the author of Living the Dream: Putting Your Creativity to Work [and Getting Paid]— published by Peachpit Press (2013) as well as three eBooks published by Craft & Vision and one by Flatbooks.
Corwin presents at photography, design, and entrepreneurship conferences throughout Canada and the United States, he is also a guest lecturer at Vancouver Media Arts Institute, Langara College, and Capilano University IDEA Program. Connect with him through his website where he doesn’t blog, he delivers at corwinhiebert.com.
Dianne Jacob is the author of Will Write for Food: The Complete Guide to Writing Cookbooks, Blogs, Reviews, Memoir, and More. The first edition won the Cordon D’Or International award for Best Literary Food Reference Book in 2005. The second edition won the Gourmand World Cookbook Award in 2010 for best book in the USA in its category. Her blog, Will Write for Food, covers food writing trends and technique, particularly recipe writing and blogging. The New York Times, Publishers’ Weekly, Chow, Eater, BlogHer, and Food52 News have picked up her posts. She started the blog in 2009 as a way to update her book, which features an extensive chapter on food blogging. Dianne is also co-author of the cookbook Grilled Pizzas & Piadinas, with chef Craig Priebe. They are working on a second pizza book, to be published by Rizzoli in 2015.
Previously a newspaper, magazine, and publishing company editor-in-chief, Dianne became a full-time writing coach, author, and freelance editor in 1996. She coaches writers across the US, Canada, Europe and Asia on writing and publishing books, freelance articles, and blogs. She also edits manuscripts for publishers and helps people through the publishing process. Dianne judges books for the James Beard Foundation and for the International Association of Culinary Professionals annual cookbook awards. She has also been a judge for the Bert Greene Award for Food Journalism. A feature she wrote about food blogs was a finalist for a Bert Greene award in 2007. A published writer since 1975, Dianne has written feature articles for Salon.com, Sunset, Clean Eating, Gastronomica, and Writer’s Digest. She was named the Joseph Hoare Gastronomic Writer in Residence for 2013 for the Stratford Chef’s School in Canada.
Dianne has taught classes on food writing at the Smithsonian Institute and UCLA’s Journalism Department. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. For five years she ran the Food Writing Symposium at Book Passage in Corte Madera, CA. She speaks regularly at BlogHer Food, the International Food Blogger Conference, Food Blog South, and at the International Association of Culinary Professionals’ annual conference. See her website, www.diannej.com, for more information. Twitter: @diannej
Laura-Jane The Rawtarian is a leading creator of simple, satisfying raw food recipes. She is the host of The Raw Food Podcast and the author of “Raw Food Favorites” (2014). Her recipes have been featured in The Huffington Post, The Guardian Newspaper and Liquid Magazine. She shares 100+ free simple, satiating raw food recipes at www.therawtarian.com. She is also an active speaker about the intersection of food and online business, most recently at the Blogher Food Conference in Miami, FL. She lives in a renovated farmhouse on a rural acreage in Prince Edward Island, Canada
Andrea Kolber, Digital Product Director, TC Media
A media professional with 10 years of experience in strategic planning, content management and business management, Kolber has worked with global media companies including AOL, MSN and with global brands such as Kraft, Proctor & Gamble, Macy’s, Nestle, and L’Oreal.
Robert McCullough is Publisher of Appetite and Vice-President, Random House of Canada. After twenty-one successful years at Whitecap Books, Robert had the opportunity to start a new imprint in Vancouver for Random House of Canada, where he has been creating a carefully curated collection of food, drink, and lifestyle titles since launching in 2012. The list has produced many Globe and Mail bestsellers, including The Soup Sisters Cookbook from the Calgary-based non-profit organization and Jerusalem by London chef sensations Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi.
In 2013, Appetite won three IACP Awards, including Best First Book for The Smitten Kitchen by blogging phenomenon Deb Perelman, as well as a James Beard Award for Jerusalem. In addition, several titles, including Butter Baked Goods by gourmet marshmallow pioneer Rosie Daykin were selected as Heather’s Picks by Chapters/Indigo.
Food writer Tara O’Brady makes great chocolate chip cookies. She believes learning to cook isn’t a finite course of study; it is a lifetime of lessons taught best through action, and to know how to cook is as much about following recipes as it is about seeing, tasting, trying, and getting comfortable with your own instincts. All of that explains why she’s been working on those cookies since she was 12 years old.
After an education in English and Communications took her into marketing, Tara started a food blog, Seven Spoons, in May 2005. In the years since, the site has grown, winning national and international awards for excellence in writing, photography, and recipes. Tara is a core contributor to UPPERCASE magazine, with a column in each issue. She has written elsewhere as well, including Saveur.com, The Globe and Mail, and Kinfolk magazine. Her recipes and photographs have appeared in The Guardian, on Bon Appétit, and Oprah.com, among others. Tara is the subject of a chapter in the upcoming Blog Me Beautiful (RotoVision 2014), and her first cookbook will published by Ten Speed Press in 2015. Twitter: @taraobrady Instagram: @taraobrady
If that sandwich or three-layer cake in the photos Matt Armendariz takes looks so incredibly delicious, there’s a reason: his name is Adam. With precision, skill, and an unparalleled artistic flair, Adam Pearson styles food for photographs, but not only with Matt.
As a popular food stylist with a variety of advertising and editorial clients, he creates the beautiful food seen in catalogs, magazines, cookbooks and commercials.
While a college culinary course showed him a future of grueling restaurant work (“I don’t smoke enough or drink enough to be a chef!” jokes Adam) , it was a chance opportunity to put his skills to the test in still photography that started him on his path to food styling. His food is so gorgeous that’s Crate & Barrel’s own CB2 features him regularly as their culinary consultant, but it’s in the kitchen creating masterpieces that makes Adam the happiest.
In the media, Adam’s experience and colorful character have been featured in the Huffington Post, Crate & Barrel, and Los Angeles Magazine, and he’s also spoken on the art of food styling at BlogHer food and during workshops.
While fun, it’s not always a glamorous job when you’re sourcing the best ingredients for a client or packing up your toolkit to catch a red-eye flight. But the results are always beautiful, interesting, and tasteful. Considering we eat with our eyes first, Adam wouldn’t have it any other way. Twitter: @AdamCPearson
Ashley Rodriguez is the creator of NotWithoutSalt.com, the winner of Saveur Magazine’s Best Cooking Blog in 2013. She studied in professional kitchens before becoming a mother of three. Now Ashley spends her time, cooking for her family, teaching cooking and baking as well as food photography. Ashley is working on her first cookbook, Date Night In (out in December).
Julie Van Rosendaal is the author of six best-selling cookbooks, including Alice Eats: the Wonderland Cookbook with co-author chef Pierre A. Lamielle, which just released last fall. She has contributed to numerous other cookbooks and has another scheduled to release this fall. Julie has been the food columnist on the Calgary Eyeopener on CBC Radio One for 8 years, she’s the food editor of Parents Canada magazine and writes for numerous newspapers and magazines, including Swerve, Avenue, Western Living, the Calgary Herald and City Palate. She co-hosted three seasons of the TV series It’s Just Food with chef Ned Bell, is a food stylist for TV, print and corporate clients, and she writes and takes photos for her award-winning food blog, DinnerwithJulie.com, which documents real life in her home kitchen in Calgary with her husband, Mike, and 8 year old son, Willem.
Aimée Wimbush-Bourque is a Montreal urban homesteader, former chef, and mother of three. After ten years of restaurant life, she left professional kitchens to start a family and foray into recipe development and food writing. Now, Aimée is the editor of food blog Simple Bites, named “Best Kids’ Cooking Blog” by Saveur Magazine in 2013, where she chronicles her kitchen adventures with recipes, cooking tips, photos and stories. She writes a monthly column for JamieOliver.com and is the author of the upcoming cookbook Brown Eggs and Jam Jars (Spring 2015, Penguin). For more whole foods inspiration and everyday delicious chit-chat, find Aimée’s social media profile on Vizify.