Jack Hitt, an acclaimed author and food writer, and Betsy McLaughlin, a businesswoman and board member for Veggie Grill, will discuss, “The Future of Food: How Covid-19 is Influencing What, Where, and How People Eat,” with Jennifer Gerarda Brown, dean of the School of Law at Quinnipiac University, at noon on Thursday, Aug. 20.
The virtual event, which is free and open to the public, is part of “The Way Forward: The Quinnipiac President’s Speaker Series.” Click here to register.
“COVID-19 may have altered our relationships to food — and our relationships with each other through food service — but the fact remains that our culture, economy and social fabric are powerfully expressed through food,” Brown said. “This conversation with Jack and Betsy promises to cover a wide range of topics and will enable us to view the pandemic through an intriguing and enlightening lens.”
Hitt contributes regularly to The New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker and the public radio program, “This American Life.” His work can be found anthologized in The Best American Travel Writing, The Oxford American Book of Great Music Writing, Best Food Writing and The Best American Science Writing. His one-man show, “Making Up the Truth,” toured the country in 2012 from Charleston’s Spoleto Festival to New York City’s Public Theatre.
His book about walking the road to Santiago in Spain, “Off the Road,” was made into the movie, “The Way,” by Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez. His Esquire article on early computer amateurs was made into the cult movie classic, “Hackers.”
Hitt won a Peabody Award in 2008 for his “This American Life” special on Guantanamo Bay. He was the first to interview detainees who had been held there. Hitt won another Peabody Award in 2018 for the history podcast, “Uncivil.” His most recent book, “Bunch of Amateurs,” explores the idea of self-invention.
McLaughlin was CEO of Hot Topic from 2003 to 2011. She serves and has previously served on several boards in the retail and restaurant sectors, including Veggie Grill, Noodles and Company, Bark, Dolls Kill, Everlane, Lazy Dog Cafe, 5.11 and PetSmart Charities.
Before serving as CEO of Hot Topic, McLaughlin worked for Anchor Blue Clothing Company and The Broadway in finance, merchandising and operations. In 2001, McLaughlin founded the second Hot Topic division called Torrid, a plus-size retail chain aimed at young women.
During McLaughlin’s tenure as CEO, the corporation was included on the Forbes list of “200 Hot Companies,” Fortune’s “100 Fastest Growing Companies,” Bloomberg Businessweek’s “Hot Growth Companies” and Fortune’s “100 Best Companies to Work For.”
McLaughlin was selected by Investor’s Business Daily as one of the “Top 5 Business Leaders of 2003” and “Top 10 CEOs with Vision.” Ad Age named her as one of the “Marketing 50,” and in 2005, she was highlighted by Institutional Investor as one of the “Best CEOs in America.”
“The Way Forward: The Quinnipiac President’s Speaker Series” features thoughtful conversations about today’s social, economic and health challenges, and the trailblazing ideas that will drive solutions for tomorrow.
For more information, call (203) 582-8652.