Category Archives: Cafe 458

Culinary Fight Night: And the winner is…

Cafe 458 Executive Chef Tony Sharpe has made us proud yet again! Working alongside Chef Clarence Ridgley and a team from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts, Chef Tony helped score a major victory at Culinary Fight Night.

Left to Right: ACSS Board President Tom Body and wife Mary Beth, Chef Clarence Ridgley and Chef Tony Sharpe

In this unique event, Atlanta’s top chefs compete inside a boxing ring. Ringside judges score their culinary concoctions on taste, presentation and creativity. Each team picks a favorite charity to highlight. Chef Tony’s team selected Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency in hopes of building awareness and financial support for an organization that helps break the cycle of homelessness. Thank you! And nice work, all.

Main Course: Peppercorn seared beef tenderloin with sauteed Brussels sprouts and baby carrots.

Even if you missed Tuesday’s competition, you can still enjoy Chef Tony’s work every Sunday at Cafe 458. Proceeds from our public Sunday Brunch (including tips) support ACSS programs during the week to empower homeless individuals to become self sufficient, productive and charitable members of our community.

Culinary Fight Night pits Atlanta's top chefs in a head to head cooking competition inside a boxing ring!

Chef Tony at work.

Chef Tony Sharpe at Culinary Fight Night.

ACSS Board President Tom Body congratulates Chef Tony Sharpe.


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Cafe 458 Chef Tony Sharpe to Compete in Boxing-Themed Cooking Challenge

Cafe 458 Executive Chef Tony Sharpe

Cafe 458’s own Chef Tony Sharpe will compete in Culinary Fight Night., 6 p.m. August 23 at the Park Tavern. The unique, boxing-themed event not only highlights Atlanta’s top chefs, but also delivers a charitable punch.

Chef Tony and his team will be representing Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency as they compete with another culinary team representing Atlanta Beltline — two great causes that improve the quality of life for people in Atlanta and beyond.

The chefs will cook head to head, preparing a three course meal inside a boxing ring, while ringside judges and members of the audience score the food in three categories: taste, presentation and creativity.

Click here for tickets!

Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency is a results-driven, non-profit organization committed to breaking the cycle of homelessness through intense job readiness and life skills training. Cafe 458 is an award-winning restaurant that provides balanced meals to homeless clients during the week as they attend programs managed by Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency. On Sunday, the cafe opens to the general public for brunch, with all proceeds (including tips) going back to ACSS programs.

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Ironman: Triathlete Board Member Competes Globally to Raise Funds for ACSS

ACSS board member and triathlete Bishop Leatherbury

ACSS Board Member and passionate triathlete Bishop Leatherbury has accepted the challenge to raise $100,000 for ACSS by competing in the Annual Ironman World Championship to be held in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii on October 8, 2011. It’s a race that combines a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride and a marathon, all of which must be completed in less than 17 hours!

As Southeast regional managing partner of Tatum, LLC, Bishop has helped many Atlanta leaders to assess challenges, pursue opportunities and mobilize the right resources to solve problems and achieve results. As a valued member of the ACSS board, Bishop has utilized these same skills to help homeless men and women rebuild their lives.

As for competing in the Ironman World Championship, Bishop says, “I am combining two of my passions – my passion for the sport of triathlon and my passion for ACSS and its mission.”

ACSS continues to demonstrate its worth through the year-to-date performance of its programs.

ACSS CareerWorks has graduated 210 (93%) of the homeless clients called Visionary Innovative Partners (VIPs) from the program with 155 VIPs obtaining full-time employment earning an average wage of $9.25 per hour.

Cafe 458 has had 67 VIPs enroll in the Cafe program since January 2011 with 36 new enrollees during the 2nd quarter. Ten of those VIPs obtained permanent housing, and 30 entered shelters or transitional housing. Twenty-two of the VIPs obtained benefits.

Seventy four military veterans (50 males and 24 females) enrolled in ACSS Veterans Reintegration Programs resulting in an additional 31 full-time jobs this year.

“Every morning, nearly 7,000 people in Atlanta wake up with no place to call home,” Bishop says. “It is a sad and troubling statistic. It’s even more troubling when you realize that veterans of our country’s armed services are disproportionately represented among the homeless. ACSS is committed to breaking the cycle of homelessness in metro Atlanta and beyond.”

Bishop’s efforts to complete the race and raise money for ACSS provide the benefit for all of us to potentially see fewer people on the street without a place to call home. Please get involved today by making a donation and helping Bishop reach his goal of $100,000. Donors who support the ACSS cause will be provided a tax receipt and the great personal satisfaction of helping the less fortunate to transition back into the workforce and becoming a vital human resource for the community.

To join Bishop’s efforts, please visit:

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Filed under ACSS Awards & Accomplishments, ACSS Programs, Cafe 458, CareerWorks, Upcoming Events

Coach Bill Curry Explains “The Miracle of Team”

Georgia State Head Football Coach Bill Curry

Georgia State football coach Bill Curry calls it “the miracle of team” — the ability to unite individuals from completely different backgrounds and mindsets under a common cause.

“That very person that we thought we hated becomes our brother, and it lasts for a lifetime,” Curry said. “That’s supposed to happen in church. That’s supposed to happen in the family, and sometimes it does. It always happens in the football huddle. It can happen here.”

Curry was speaking to a packed Parish Hall at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, which hosted Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency’s Annual Brunch. It was a year ago this month that Atlanta Enterprise Center, which grew out of an employment training ministry at St. Luke’s, merged with another independent non-profit, Samaritan House, to form ACSS.

St. Luke’s remains an important and active partner in ACSS’s interfaith support system.

The crowd in attendance included ACSS staff, volunteers, supporters and clients — folks from many different backgrounds, united under the common cause of breaking the cycle of homelessness.

One of our volunteers produced this short video to introduce just a few of the many dedicated and diverse clients, volunteers and staff who come together to make ACSS and its programs successful and effective. Call it “the miracle of team.”

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And the winner goes to…

Last week the world paused to remember a man who committed his life to serving those less fortunate and to inspiring others to greatness – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  Each year, Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health honors organizations who demonstrate true leadership in the community at its Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Service Awards, and Café 458 was honored to be one of this year’s recipients!

Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency President Charles Edwards and ACSS’s Clinical Counselor Bobbie Slocumb attended a reception at Emory University last week where they accepted the award on behalf of our dedicated staff and volunteers.  Here’s a picture of the award which is now proudly displayed in the Café 458 dining hall.

The award reads “For unwavering dedication towards building community through unity, service, collaborative responsibility.”

Café 458 was nominated for the award by a volunteer who was impressed by Café 458’s programs and lunch service for Metro Atlanta’s homeless population. By providing daily meals, case management and support services, Café 458 helps our guests achieve personal goals. Staffed by ACSS employees and volunteers, everyone who works at Café 458 makes extra effort to ensure that the men and women we serve feel special and are treated with dignity as they continue to make strides towards recovery and self-sufficiency.  Click here to read more about ACSS’s award-winning program.

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