Monique Trudnowski of Adriatic Grill wins national Faces of Diversity American Dream Award


April 18, 2013

OLYMPIA, Wash. — The Washington Restaurant Association is excited to congratulate Monique Trudnowski, owner of Tacoma’s Adriatic Grill Italian Cuisine & Wine Bar, for winning the National Restaurant Association’s (NRA) Faces of Diversity American Dream Award. Trudnowski received her honor Wednesday at the NRA’s Public Affairs Conference in Washington D.C.

The NRA honors a restaurant operator each year with the Faces of Diversity American Dream Award, which recognizes diverse members of the industry who have, through hard work and perseverance, achieved the American Dream.

The award’s criteria clearly is fitting for Trudnowski, who, by age 18, had been abandoned by her father, worked to support her family, experienced homelessness and had her first child as a single mother. Those setbacks didn’t prevent her from opening her own restaurant in 2007; and in 2009, she established the Adriatic Grill Culinary Scholarship to help others pursue their dreams in the restaurant industry.

“Monique is such an inspiring example of one of this industry’s great strengths– creating opportunity,” said Anthony Anton, WRA president and CEO. “Because restaurants provided Monique with a solid career path, she is now able to create the same advantage for dozens of other workers. We are proud of the work she is doing and this well-deserved award; Monique is truly a testament to the power of the American Dream.”

As owner of the Adriatic Grill, Trudnowski– also a mother of six, provides jobs for more than 60 people. She has taken an active role in the state’s newly formed Washington Tourism Alliance and has been integral to the Washington Restaurant Association’s political advocacy efforts.

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