The Blend is Serving Up Change with Refire, A Six-Week Long Speaker Series

Hospitality has been in search of meaningful structural change for a long time. Our community has worked too many hours for not enough money in environments that can be racist, patriarchal, and unsafe. We want to reset and talk about the systemic issues plaguing our workplaces. We need a Refire.

As bars and restaurants reopen across the country, what if we took this opportunity to do things better? What if we could send back all the old, outdated ways of doing business and build a future that is more equitable, more just, and more accessible for all? What if we could reignite the spirit of activism inside all of us and work together to make big changes?

Refire takes experts from inside and outside of our industry who have had success making meaningful changes and learning how to apply those tactics in hospitality. From event accessibility, to worker’s rights and wages, to food scarcity and engaging our communities, these leaders will help us strategize actionable steps we can take in our own workplaces. Discussions about weight discrimination, grief recovery, and organizing as a workforce can help us lay out a clear plan to make our industry a kinder and safer place to work.

Hospitality needs a Refire. We hope these six speakers, over these six weeks, will galvanize our community and spur much needed change.

Refire begins Tuesday, April 27th and continues with a new conversation released every Tuesday until June 2 nd . To see these important talks, you must be a member of The Blend. To join, go to, fill out some simple information and be sure to say YES when we ask if we can email you. We will be sending out links to the Refire series every Tuesday via our email newsletter. Those links will expire after one week. After the series is complete, all talks will be available to view on

Refire Programming Schedule

  1. Michael Smith, grief recovery specialist (4.27)
  2. Devita Davison, Food Activist and Executive Director, FoodLab Detroit (5.4)
  3. Stephanie Luce, Professor of Labor Studies, The CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies (5.11)
  4. Virgie Tovar, writer and weight discrimination activist (5.18)
  5. Dawn Serra, sustainable, accessible, justice-based events consultant (5.25)
  6. Chelsea Gregoire, hospitality systems innovator (6.1)

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