“It keeps getting better and better.”
As word of RE: Her spread, inquiries came in from women all over the world interested in starting their own chapters, as well as corporate sponsors looking to support their mission.
“To us, it’s been important to work with people who really understand our business and community. A lot of companies have offered us money, but we want to make sure we’re building long-term partnerships with companies who share our core values,” she said.
The first expansion of RE: Her launched in March 2022 with a festival in Washington, D.C., supporting 100 women-owned restaurants in the area with specials and events. Samson and her team are far from stopping there — in addition to planning the next installment of their Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. festivals, RE: Her has teamed up with The James Beard Foundation and Women in Hospitality United to form a coalition that will work to solve some of the biggest problems facing women in restaurants today, from fair pay to childcare.
For now, RE: Her has two membership categories for restaurant owners, and another for leaders, including head chefs, sommeliers, and other decision-makers in Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles. As RE: Her looks to the future, they are looking to develop programs that can include women from all parts of the hospitality space, and in additional markets.
“The more people hear about it, the more they want to be a part of it,” said Samson. “We’ve done so much in so little time, and it just keeps getting better and better.”
Dina Samson is a co-founder of RE: Her as well as a co-owner of Los Angeles restaurants Rossoblu and Superfine Pizza, which she runs with her husband, Steve Samson. In addition to RE: Her, Samson also co-founded the charitable organizations Rossoblu Restaurant Relief Fund, Feeling Superfine Program, and FeedLoveLA, which all focus on addressing food insecurity issues in her community. Samson is both a James Beard Foundation Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership and C200 WinLab fellow. You can follow her on Instagram.
Along with Samson, RE: Her was founded by Mary Sue Milliken, Lien Ta, Sylvie Gabriele, Bricia Lopez, Brittney Valles, Heather Sperling, Kim Prince, and Sandra Cordero, all of whom own restaurants in the Los Angeles area. You can learn more about RE: Her, partner restaurants, and how to get involved.