HD NextGen Forum
Presented by Hospitality Design magazine, HD NextGen Forum is an invitation-only conference that blends education, inspiration, business, and networking for the next generation of hospitality design leaders. From inspirational keynotes to the influential leaders of the Owners’ Roundtable, our speakers lineup is sure to motivate and educate.
Brandon E. Chrostowski
Brandon Edwin Chrostowski is one of the foremost thought leaders on returning citizens and social enterprise. In 2007, he founded EDWINS Leadership & Restaurant Institute, a culinary arts program that trains and employs formerly incarcerated adults at its flagship French eatery in Cleveland, Ohio. Under Chrostowski’s stewardship, EDWINS has grown to include edwins too, a culinary incubator, makerspace, and restaurant; EDWINS Butcher Shop and Bakery and Diner; and Second Chance Life Skills Center, a campus for learning, housing, and support services. Most recently, EDWINS added EDWINS Family Center, a free daycare service for families of Institute trainees and employees. Separately, EDWINS runs an on-site program at Grafton (Ohio) Correctional Institution, and provides curriculum to over 400,000 inmates across the U.S.
A classically trained chef and sommelier, Chrostowski honed his skills in Paris, New York, and Chicago, at restaurants including Michelin 3-star Lucas Carton, Chanterelle, Picholine, Le Cirque, and the legendary Charlie Trotter’s. His culinary and mission-driven efforts have been lauded with IFMA’s 2020 Silver Plate, CNN 2016 Heroes, Crain’s “40 under 40” awards, the Richard Cornuelle Award for Social Entrepreneurship, and semifinalist status in the 2022 James Beard Awards. Chrostowski resides in Cleveland with his wife, Catana, and their three children.
Benjamin + Max Goldberg
Brothers Benjamin Goldberg and Max Goldberg co-own Strategic Hospitality, a Nashville-based company founded in 2006. Strategic Hospitality has created a variety of concepts that have contributed to the fabric and growth of the city’s dining culture. As native Nashvillians, the Goldbergs strive to support their local community, and preserve the kindness and hospitality for which the city is known.
To date, the Strategic Hospitality portfolio includes Merchants, the Patterson House, the Catbird Seat, Pinewood, the Band Box, the Country Club at the Band Box, Bastion, Henrietta Red, Locust, Tacos by Alebrije in GEODIS Park, and soon-to-open Kisser. The Goldberg brothers’ multiple nominations for the 2015, 2016, 2018, 2019, and 2020 James Beard Foundation Award for Outstanding Restaurateur attest to their entrepreneurial drive, innovative ideas, and focus on exceptional customer service within each of their establishments.
CEO + Founder, Go Together Global™
As the best-selling author of Making Work Work and Go Together, Shola Richards is a positivity writer with a passionate worldwide following. His articles and popular “Go Together Movement” email series have reached readers in more than 160 countries.
An authority on workplace happiness and engagement, Richards has been featured on the Today Show and CBS This Morning, and in Forbes, Black Enterprise, Complete Wellbeing India, Business Insider Australia, and other publications. Richards has shared his transformative message as a speaker across companies, industries, and on the TEDx stage.
Richards is a father, husband, identical twin, and self-professed “kindness extremist”, who will not rest until bullying and incivility is extinct in the American workplace.
Social Futurist + Educator
Inaugural Head of Marketing, Google Sidewalk Labs
Tameka Vasquez is a social futurist and educator who has spent more than a decade working with global technology startups and enterprises, where she had a front-row seat to the impacts and opportunities of disruptive technologies on modern society. She most recently served as the first head of marketing for Google’s urban innovation and sustainability arm, Sidewalk Labs. Vasquez is also a business school professor currently teaching at St. John’s University (New York City) and Stevens Institute of Technology (Hoboken, New Jersey).
She is passionate about social innovation, and founded an advisory called The Future Quo to democratize ideas that equip business leaders to apply futures thinking and purposefully design a future that works, in more ways, for more people. Her insights have been featured by Inman, Step Dubai, Columbia University, Udemy for Business, IBM Think Leaders, the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation, and more.
A 2020 Fortune Magazine Fellow and award recipient for work exploring the effects of artificial intelligence and other socially-impactful technologies, Vasquez holds a bachelor’s degree from the City University of New York, a master’s from Columbia University, and a certificate in strategic foresight.
Beyond business, Vasquez explores cityscapes and scouts for new art. She is also training in yoga sculpt, and mustering the stamina to run a 10K.
At HD NextGen Forum, HD annually presents the Wave of the Future awards—an honor reserved for designers, architects, owners, and brand executives who are young enough to be considered visionary, but tested enough to be considered accomplished. Here are the 2022 honorees.