Welcome:
Culinary Director
Courtney Edwards

Photo of Courtney Edwards, a blonde white woman in a tan blazer with teal earrings and a lovely smileChow Chow is pleased to welcome Courtney Edwards into the role of Culinary Director for the 2022 event series. Joining Executive Director Rebecca Lynch and Festival Director Shay Brown, Edwards will oversee all culinary aspects of the event series that celebrates the rich food culture of the Appalachian region. Courtney joined Shay Brown Events in as Director of Marketing and Communications in 2022 and will expand her role to help tell stories through food at each event.  

Prior to her current role, Courtney held various leadership positions over 16 years in communications, marketing, customer experience, events, and hospitality. Most recently she led brand and marketing strategies for workplace wellness provider Work From Om as their VP of Marketing & Communications. Previously she was brought on by global manufacturer Milliken & Company to transform their guest and associate experience, and was later promoted to also oversee corporate communications, brand, and community engagement for the company. After college Courtney spent 9 years in some of the best and busiest Washington, DC restaurants, including working for the chef and humanitarian José Andrés. The lessons learned during that time fuel her vision to implement global best practices in customer experience and hospitality wherever she is. Throughout her career she has served as both a formal and informal mentor for dozens of rising stars and has worked to advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion in every company she’s been a part of. Courtney holds a bachelor of science degree in psychology from Washington and Lee University and is obsessed with cooking and grammar.

"Chow Chow's mission and values are what drew me to this opportunity, and the community of chefs and makers behind it sealed the deal. Our beautiful region is teeming with talent and it's such a joy to see all of these cultural champions coming together with a shared vision. I'm delighted to play my part in creating meaningful experiences for locals and visitors alike."

Welcome, Courtney! 

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This inspired, friendly and free-spirited food scene tucked in the mountains of Appalachia has been called “Foodtopia,” but the locals just call it home. Plan your trip now.

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Mission

Learn more about the vision and values that guide Chow Chow's work to celebrate and enrich the foodways of Southern Appalachia.

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