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October 18, 2010 at 10:30 AM

Seattle restaurateur Susan Kaufman wins the Nellie nod

A mighty mazel tov to Seattle restaurateur Susan Kaufman, named 2010 Nellie Cashman Business Owner of the Year. Kaufman owns and operates two Eastlake restaurants, Serafina (open since 1991), and Cicchetti (which made its debut in 2009). As one of five finalists — a list that included Cupcake Royale’s Jody Hall — Kaufman was feted at a gala event October 14.

“I was, and am ferklempt,” she said this weekend via e-mail of her emotional state, describing both the thrill and her surprise, at the win. That win comes courtesy of Women Business Owners, a Puget Sound professional organization that annually recognizes and honors women entrepreneurs, bestowed in the name of Nellie Cashman — an American pioneer, gold prospector, philanthropist and entrepreneur.

Susan Kaufman (in blue) does Nellie proud at the 2010 Nellie Cashman awards.

As proudly reported in the Eastlake Ave. Blog, Anne-Marie Faiola, CEO of Bramble Berry, past winner and 2010 Nellie judge, explained the nod thus:

“With Susan, her commitment to financial management really stood out. It’s not easy to run a restaurant and start another one, all from existing capital. And to have a successful restaurant that is consistently profitable and full over two decades is a rare thing. Additionally, the fact that many of her staff are long-time members of her team speaks volumes about the type of company she runs. Her enthusiasm for creating community through her food and restaurants was obvious as was her can-do attitude and her grace and wit under pressure.”

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