Elizabeth (Liz) Williams is the Founder and President of the National Food & Beverage Foundation and the Southern Food & Beverage Museum (SoFAB.) Another important divition of NatFAB is the Boyd Hospitality & Culinary Library, one of only stand-alone culinary libraries in the US. Liz became determined to integrate her love of food and history and was amazed that the South did not have a museum dedicated to its extraordinary and unique culinary traditions. After collecting numerous artifacts and planning exhibits, recruiting nationally recognized chefs and food industry leaders to serve as the Board of Directors, Liz and her team developed and refined the concept of SoFAB. The Southern Food and Beverage Museum opened its doors in June of 2008, in the Riverwalk, overlooking the Mississippi River in downtown New Orleans. She has served as a culinary diplomacy consultant for activities in Colombia, Russia, and France, as well as in the US.
Fascinated by the way the lure of nutmeg and peppercorns motivated the exploration of the world, Liz considers herself lucky to have been born into a family of Sicilian heritage in New Orleans and grow up eating dishes derived from two strong food traditions. Much of her research and writing centers on the legal and policy issues related to food and foodways. Besides establishing SOFAB, she consults on issues of nonprofit management and governance, as well as public/private partnerships, intellectual property and publishing. Her book, The A to Z Encyclopedia of Food Controversies and the Law, was being published in 2010 by Greenwood Publishing. Her latest book, New Orleans: A Food Biography was published by Alta Mira in 2013. Her book, Lift Your Spirits,about the cocktail culture of New Orleans, comes out in May of 2016, published by LSU Press.
Liz remains a passionate worldwide traveler, an ongoing mission; she says “to eat new food in new places.”