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ReOpen DC Committee | Restaurants and Food Retailers

Government Co-Chairperson
Community Co-Chairperson      Community Co-Chairperson
José Andrés                              Kathy Hollinger
Architect Advisor
Marnique Heath
Legal Advisor
Susan Longstreet
Public Health Advisor
Robin (Diggs) Perdue
Associate Committee Director
Shawn Townsend
Committee Coordinator
Uno Izegbu

Committee Resource Staff
Lorena Kowalewski


Committee Recommendations


The renaissance of the restaurant scene in Washington, DC has been nothing short of incredible. In 2019, the restaurant and food service industry employed over 62,000 people and it continues to bring in millions a year to the District’s bottom line. Restaurants and their workers were also among the first businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic closures, and it's argued that their operations may have to undergo significant changes to open safely and gain public confidence when re- opening. Other food operators along with the grab-and-go options from restaurants have allowed the flow of food to support DC residents staying at home, school students and their families, and emergency operations at Department of Aging and Community Living centers COVD related home bound residents.

The Committee will make recommendations on safe opening and recommend a tool box of strategies that restaurateurs will need to re-open, DC permits, licensing and inspections will be examined, as well innovations in food delivery revealed by the pandemic response.


The committee will focus on effectively addressing any challenges communities may face with accessing healthy and fresh foods, and ensuring that restaurants and food retailers provide safe and necessary food services while following appropriate guidelines.

Including, but not limited to:

  • Restaurants
  • Pubs
  • Outdoor & Indoor Food Markets
  • Grocery Stores
  • Bars
  • Food Trucks
  • Food Delivery Services
  • Permits & Licenses

Committee Members

  • Donovan Anderson, Community Member
  • Kim Ford, Community Member
  • Dyana Forrester, Community Member
  • Andrew Kline, Community Member
  • Spike Mendelson, Community Member
  • Maggie O'Neill, Community Member
  • Anwar Salem, Community Member
  • Rudy Seikaly, Community Member
  • Andy Shallal, Community Member
  • Nick Stefanelli, Community Member
  • Ona Balkus, Government Member
  • Arian Gibson, Government Member
  • Fred Moosally, Government Member
  • Jacqueline Watson, Community Member