Bob Zappatelli Culinary Arts Scholarship

James Beard Foundation & Benchmark Hospitality International Open Applications for the 2016 Bob Zappatelli Culinary Arts Scholarship


Benchmark Hospitality International®, in partnership with the James Beard Foundation, announces applications are open to culinary students domestically and globally for the 2016 Bob Zappatelli Culinary Arts Scholarship.  The scholarship fund was established by Burt Cabañas, founder & chairman of Benchmark Hospitality International, in 2009 to celebrate the memory and culinary legacy of Bob Zappatelli, the company’s beloved first vice president of food & beverage.  Applications for the scholarship will remain open through May 15, 2016.

“Bob loved the culinary arts, and mentored countless culinarians who worked as part of his nationwide team here at Benchmark Hospitality,” said Mr. Cabañas. “We have a profound love for him and his legacy, and how he nurtured new and existing talent, helping each person become the best chef, the best sous chef, and the most dedicated director of food and beverage possible.  Bob was a great example of being the difference for his team and our customers.”

“Bob Zappatelli was one of those rare professionals who could relate personally to every member of his culinary team across multiple properties, as well as our myriad of customers,” said Ellen Sinclair, senior vice president, operations, for Benchmark Hospitality International.  “He had his finger on the pulse of what was trending in the culinary arts, could deftly lead an elegant Benchmark dinner at the James Beard House, as well as put on chef’s whites and help out in the kitchen of any of our properties.  He was always teaching and leading by example.” 

The Bob Zappatelli Culinary Arts Scholarship Application 

(Sponsored by his friends and family, and by Benchmark Hospitality International.) 

The Bob Zappatelli Culinary Arts Scholarship scholarship honors the memory of Bob Zappatelli, beloved first vice president of food and beverage of Benchmark Hospitality International. It is intended as a living memorial to his passion and commitment to mentoring talented culinarians in every interaction he had, and with every friend that he made in the world of hospitality. 

Applicants must: 

-Be planning to enroll or currently enrolled in an accredited program of culinary studies or food and beverage 

-Have work experience in food and beverage

-Have demonstrated strong leadership skills and a passion for the culinary arts 

Culinary students globally can apply online through the James Beard Foundation website for consideration for the Bob Zappatelli Culinary Arts Scholarship educational resources.  The scholarship application can be accessed online at:


The application process remains open through May 15, 2016. 

For further information on the Bob Zappatelli Culinary Arts Scholarship, the application process, or additional scholarships available through the James Beard Foundation, students are encouraged to visit

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