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Holly Hambright




MANAGING PARTNER/EXECUTIVE CHEF
HOLLY’S GOURMET'S MARKET & HOLLY’S EVENTFUL DINING

Work hard. Be early. Learn to listen. These are the three pieces of advice Holly Hambright would give to anyone who asked. Simple, right? Not always. But by following these key words of wisdom, Hambright has become a highly sought-after caterer and chef in Knoxville. As Managing Partner and Executive Chef for her restaurant Holly’s Gourmet's Market and her catering business Holly’s Eventful Dining, Hambright knows all about hard work. But she also knows the enormous satisfaction that hard work can bring. “This industry is a hard one to be sure. The stress is daily, the work is hard and the hours are long,” she explained. “But I can guarantee there is no other career that offers the opportunity to satisfy and elevate a basic need for one’s fellow human being than serving a delicious meal. The instant gratification of a clean plate is incomparable.”

Born and raised in South Knoxville, Hambright recalls that growing up in this town “bored her to tears.” But since her return in 2000, she has watched Knoxville’s growing culinary and arts scene explode with opportunity and is excited to be a “small part of that.” Hambright would love to see Knoxville continue to be an inclusive and thoughtful place to live, work and play. “I am extremely grateful to have a viable and ever-growing business working with folks I adore, in a community I am proud to call home, enjoying a ‘job’ I absolutely love,” she noted.

Hambright does wish that more women would return to the culinary arts stating that the opportunities are there for those who want them. “When I first came to the culinary arts, there were more women in the industry,” she explained. “When I left Baltimore in 1997, there were almost as many women-owned restaurants as men-owned. I don’t think that is the case anymore. In Knoxville, I can only think of a handful of women-owned restaurants out of the hundreds that have recently opened. I’m not sure why this is, but I hope the trend will begin to shift back and more women will realize that the culinary arts are a wonderful way to make a living.”

Having a positive impact on the community is something that Hambright does instinctively. “For me, having an impact on the community means being a good steward of inclusiveness, patience and love,” she said. “I support anything and anyone who helps promote that which makes life beautiful.”

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