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Oral Histories

The SFA oral history program documents life stories from the American South. Collecting these stories, we honor the people whose labor defines the region. If you would like to contribute to SFA’s oral history collections, please send your ideas for oral history along with your CV or Resume and a portfolio of prior oral history work to

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Todd Richards

The Soulful Company Restaurant Group

Chef Todd Richards is the founder of The Soulful Company Restaurant Group, of Lake & Oak Neighborhood BBQ and Soul: Food & Culture. He is the author of SOUL: A Chef’s Culinary Evolution in 150 Recipes. Chef Todd is an award-winning chef known for his contemporary cooking style rooted in Soul & Southern cuisines. A native of Chicago, and based in Atlanta since the early 1990s, Richards is a self-taught chef and two-time semifinalist for James Beard Foundation Awards – Best Chef: Southeast.

Chef Todd is a member of the Southern Foodways Alliance and a board member of Wholesome Wave Georgia. In this interview, he discusses the impact the pandemic has had on his professional and personal life, including his experience battling COVID as a “long hauler” with symptoms lasting longer than nine months. He successfully opened two new restaurants during the pandemic.

Date of interview:

Diana Dombrowski


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Other Project Interviews



The Southern Foodways Alliance drives a more progressive future by leading conversations that challenge existing constructs, shape perspectives, and foster meaningful discussions. We reconsider the past with research, scrutiny, and documentation.


Alex Raij Txikito

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