Miss Shirley’s Cafe is excited to announce that Managing Member, David Dopkin was named “Restaurateur of the Year” at the Restaurant Association of Maryland’s Moroccan-themed 2016 Stars of the Industry Awards Gala, which was held at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel on Sunday, May 1st.
The “Restaurateur of the Year” honor is annually awarded to “a restaurant owner who shows originality, offers quality customer service, demonstrates success in the eyes of his/her fellow operators, and demonstrates leadership on behalf of the foodservice industry.”
David Dopkin and the entire Miss Shirley’s Cafe team are truly humbled and honored to accept this prestigious award, which was also awarded to David’s father and founder of Miss Shirley’s Cafe, Eddie Dopkin, only ten years ago.
David had the pleasure of being raised in the restaurant business, and credits his success to the support, guidance and mentoring of family. He jokes that he was “lining up cans in the storage room from a crib at 6 months old, cashiering at age 6 with the help of a milk crate, and baking bagels before the age of 16,” all which contributed to his passion for this industry.
In his work with Miss Shirley’s Cafe, as well as with the family’s catering company, The Classic Catering People, David is dedicated to providing exceptional service, not only in the hospitality industry, but within the community as well.
Following in his father’s footsteps, David is a full-hearted philanthropist, currently serving on several community boards, and consistently donating to over 150 local charities, organizations and schools each year through Miss Shirley’s Cafe.
In fact, David had the honor of presenting the third annual “Eddie Dopkin First Course Award, Honoring Entrepreneurship in Hospitality” Scholarship to Stratford University student Danielle Evans, at the gala on Sunday evening. Each year, this $5,000 scholarship, which is presented by The Restaurant Association of Maryland Education Foundation on behalf of the Dopkin Family, is awarded to one student who aspires to work in the hospitality industry. Danielle, who is studying baking and pastry arts at Stratford, expressed how the scholarship will help her achieve her goal of one day opening a peanut-free bakery, and teaching high school students how to cook healthy meals.
Miss Shirley’s would like to thank the many vendors, associates, family, friends and guests who have impacted the restaurant’s success. However, David dedicated this award to “each of the 150 team members of Miss Shirley’s, who also work tirelessly day in and day out to ensure that our guests have an experience that exceeds their expectations.”
Congratulations to all of the 2016 award nominees, as in the word’s of David, “It was truly just an honor to be nominated, knowing how many passionate and hardworking restaurateurs there are in Maryland.”