On Tuesday, October 21 at Canlis Restaurant in Seattle, Jonathan Saturay was honored as the winning “Emerging Leader” at the third annual Light a Fire Awards dinner sponsored by Seattle Metropolitan in partnership with The Seattle Foundation.
The Light a Fire awards “honor nonprofit organizations and individuals whose extraordinary acts of service embody the Seattle spirit of giving to make our region more prosperous, beautiful, healthful, and generous - in a word, better - for all of us.”
A Puget Sound native, Jonathan grew up in Columbia City, went to high school in Renton, and studied Music Education at Arizona State University. Growing up in a Filipino household that put food and community together hand in hand, and born with a passion for music and education, Jonathan dove into his roles as a Cheesemonger for Beecher’s Handmade Cheese, Culinary Tour Guide with Savor Seattle, and Staff Coordinator for the Seattle School's All-City Marching Band. In 2012, Jonathan became a Pure Food Kids workshop instructor and quickly rose to Director of Operations through his dynamic leadership in, and outside, the classroom. This fall, Jonathan re-located to New York City to build the Beecher’s Pure Food Kids Foundation’s capacity to teach workshops there, in the nation’s largest school district.
Kristin Hyde, director of the Beecher’s Pure Food Kids Foundation, commented on the award news: “Jonathan brings a unique and unforgettable charisma and style to his work educating kids about nutrition and instilling a sense of community through cooking. The kids just absolutely love him and have been known to seek autographs after his workshop. I couldn’t be more proud of Jonathan, nobody deserves this recognition more!”
From the clamorous fiasco of a whole classroom cooking to the silence of children eating good food, Jonathan sees the camaraderie and knowledge achieved at the end of each Pure Food Kids workshop as a testament of what food education can do for future generations. When Jonathan isn't too busy fighting the good food fight or teaching music, he enjoys reveling in all the Pacific Northwest has to offer -- hiking local trails with his best friends, listening to Seattle Hip Hop, and waiting impatiently for Rainier Cherry season.
Jonathan commented on the award: “I’m passionate about my work with the Pure Food Kids Foundation because I believe in equity for all students. Every child deserves to be empowered with information and tools to make healthier food choices for life. I am so honored to be part of an organization that allows me to work and give back to the community that has nurtured me to be the person I am today.”
Beecher’s Pure Food Kids Foundation is a non-profit initiative that provides free, nutrition education and cooking workshops to hundreds of schools in the greater Seattle Metro area and in New York City, turning more than 11,000 kids into food detectives each year. For more information about the foundation and our workshops, please visit www.purefoodkids.org.