Don't miss a bite of what's happening for women in the food world

About Us

The COOKGIRL Manifesto

The talent of being a chef truly has nothing to do with gender. There are however markedly different experiences - and obstacles – that women have to overcome on their road to success. First, for female entrepreneurs the biggest hurdle remains access to capital. This is true in any industry but is particularly acute in the culinary world. Second, The amazingly talented women in the food world deserve more attention. Attention creates buzz and capital follows buzz.

Join COOKGIRL in our mission to showcase the best-of-the-best across the country and give to the COOKGIRL FOUNDATION to help us provide scholarship funds for women to get restaurant but need a refresher on the business principles that are so important to owning and running a restaurant. Think of it as a CHEF MBA.

Female chefs are doing amazing things, cooking incredible food and inspiring us to eat better, live well and enjoy life. They are unwavering in their determination. Join us as we support them!

  • Kate Miller Spencer - CEO/Founder

    “I just love bossy women. I could be around them all day. To me, bossy is not a pejorative term at all. It means somebody’s passionate and engaged and ambitious and doesn’t mind leading.” Amy Poehler

    Kate Miller Spencer loves being an entrepreneur, especially since it gives her the opportunity to live her work philosophy. Work harder than you’re expected to, be fair, be kind and be dedicated, even when no one is watching. Give flexibility, give support and remind people that making a difference is a choice. Be passionate, engaged and ambitious and don’t be afraid to lead. Also, don’t listen to all of the noise that surrounds you, only the positive stuff.

    After 28 (gulp) years working for print magazines, with the last 17 as a magazine rep firm owner in Chicago on FOOD & WINE, Travel + Leisure, Departures to name a few, Kate is moving to the next phase of her life focused on two things that she loves: FOOD and GIRL POWER. COOKGIRL is about powerful women who have succeeded in an industry that is super tough and where being a woman shouldn’t be a descriptor. Someone needs to shout louder about the talent across the country (and globally!) and connect talented women with the capital that is so hard to come by.

    Kate is President/Founder of COOKGIRL and can be reached at

  • Sophie Swarthout - Director of Communications

    “Everything you see, I owe to spaghetti.” Sophia Loren

    Sophie Swarthout is passionate about food, philanthropy and art. With her past experience working on brands such as Food & Wine, Real Simple, Travel + Leisure, Departures and Cozi, Sophie brings powerful visual marketing skills to COOKGIRL. Sophie traveled extensively after graduating from Miami University and both taught English and was the Creative Director for a school in Santiago, Chile for a year. She even developed a video game to aid her students in learning. Sophie manages content, partnership development, social media marketing and event platform marketing for COOKGIRL.

    Sophie can be reached at

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