Nationalities Service Center is delighted to announce that Cristina Martinez, chef and co-owner of the renowned South Philly Barbacoa restaurant, is the 2017 Nationalities Service Award honoree. This award is presented each year to an immigrant who demonstrate the extraordinary value and innovative thinking that new Americans bring to our country and state. As a Mexican immigrant who is seeking status here in the U.S., Ms. Martinez has become a nationally renowned chef and entrepreneur, who, with her husband Ben Miller, has worked tirelessly to support the rights of immigrant workers in the restaurant industry. Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney asserted that Ms. Martinez and “her fellow immigrant entrepreneurs are responsible for much of Philadelphia's recent small-business growth, generating $300 million in annual earnings” (Philadelphia Inquirer 1/25/17). In its December 2016 issue, Travel and Leisure Magazine specifically cited Ms. Martinez and her passion for food and immigrant rights as one the reasons that Philadelphia is one of the top 50 Destinations for Travel in 2017. Ms. Martinez’s story is an exceptional one and we are so proud to honor her.
NSC is also thrilled to honor Dr. Marc Altshuler and the Jefferson Department of Family and Community Medicine with the Margaret Harris Award for their extensive work promoting health access for the region’s immigrants and refugees. Dr. Altshuler, in conjunction with NSC, has spearheaded the development and growth of the Philadelphia Refugee Health Collaborative, and in April 2016 he co-authored a journal article with NSC staff about the refugee health model that was published in the Harvard Public Health Review, bringing national attention to refugee healthcare in Philadelphia.
Ms. Martinez and Dr. Altshuler will be honored at Global Tastes 2017, which will be held on Tuesday, April 25 at WHYY (150 6th St, Philadelphia PA). A VIP reception at NSC will precede the event. To learn more about Global Tastes, click the link below.