Celebrating Women in Hospitality at O&B

Join us in celebrating the invaluable contributions of women in hospitality — a true force to be reckoned with!

Illustration by Amanda Cavacas, Intermediate Designer, Oliver & Bonacini Hospitality

In an industry recovering from some of the most turbulent times it’s seen in recent years, it is essential that we continue to celebrate the many accomplishments of women who are building a fairer, stronger and more inclusive future. At O&B, we are proud to employ so many passionate, hard-working, and inspiring women across our organization, be it in our kitchens, dining rooms, offices or beyond.

On International Women’s Day and every day, we champion the voices of women that make us who we are as a company, recognizing their achievements and paying tribute to their role in our daily success. From cooks to CDCs, hosts to directors, and assistants to managers, we love watching women grow and rise to the top, supporting them wholeheartedly every step of the way. By shining a light on O&B’s women in leadership — our in-house role models — we hope to support the ambition of young women and girls, giving them the confidence to unapologetically pursue their dreams.

As we look ahead, we cannot forget that there is more to be done. We must continue to talk about the obstacles women face in our industry and how, together, we can advance women’s access to safe, supportive spaces and #EmbraceEquity. By challenging stereotypes, calling out discrimination or mistreatment, and drawing attention to gender bias, we can continue to foster a workplace that genuinely values inclusion. With hospitality at the core of who we are and what we believe, we vow to keep empowering the women in our circles and show appreciation for the unique sets of values, perspectives, and experiences they bring to the table each and every day.

Below, we’re spotlighting a few of the many fierce women we’re lucky to have at O&B. Keep scrolling to find out what IWD means to them and what inspires them to be the devoted leaders they are!

“To me, International Women’s Day is about recognizing and seeing yourself in other women, so that you can help them, they can help you, they can give you advice, they can understand you a little bit better. I think it’s recognizing that we all share these similar struggles, while celebrating differences as well.”

Erica De Carvalho, General Manager, Leña

“All of my female bosses have taught me to be fearless and to push myself outside of my comfort zone. They remind me that it’s okay to feel a little uncertain, a little scared. They remind me to take a step back, look at the big picture, make a decision and shine. Without them, I don’t think I would be the leader I want to become and have grown to become.”

Jane Suh, Associate Director – Restaurant Operations, Canoe & Auberge du Pommier

“Within our events department, I’m lucky to have a team of 40 smart, creative and dialed-in women across Canada. We could not do what we do without them. Not only do they juggle their families and a hectic work schedule with compassion and grace, but they also inspire me to push beyond our visible limits, and find innovative ways to tackle the opportunities in front of us. Their passion and commitment motivate me to do my best work every day.”

Natalie Stanbra-Ho, National Director – Event Sales, Oliver & Bonacini Hospitality

“We’ve come a long way, but I think it’s still difficult for women in Back of House to succeed on the same level as men, and I would love to see that change. I’d love to see more women become CDCs. When I was younger, I never had that. I want the next generation to have more female chefs to look up to.”

Cassandra Rachey, Chef de Cuisine, Beaumont Kitchen

“I’m looking forward to celebrating International Women’s Day by cooking dinner with my daughtersーthey love this spaghetti that I do with anchovies. Now that they’re becoming teenagers, I’m finding it’s important for them to understand female empowerment, know their worth, and maintain their confidence. Everything starts from there.”

Gloria Gomes-Cabral, Director – Accounting & Financial Reporting, Oliver & Bonacini Hospitality

“My biggest hero will forever be my mom. Whenever I feel tired or worn down, I always remember that she is working back home from 9am to 9pm, basically non-stop. She is a constant source of motivation and advice for me, and has taught me to never give up.”

Rosalin Keshishian, Sous Chef, Auberge du Pommier

“I am extremely fortunate to have had strong female role models and peers in both my personal and professional life. When I began managing a decade ago, the number of females in leadership positions were few and far between. Today, the majority of the teams I interact with are female-led. For those that have led the way and supported me, I am grateful to now be in a position to pay it forward.”

Leanne Natale, Associate Director – Restaurant Operations, Jump & Leña