“I live for the simple things in life…devotionals, dogs, dinners with loved ones, and desserts. I can’t remember a time in my life when one if not all of these things were present in my everyday living. I was born and raised in Virginia Beach, Va. I began working in the food and beverage industry when I was 16 at a small locally owned coffee shop down at the oceanfront. It was here I learned the art of being a gracious host and forming lasting relationships with the guest beyond the transaction. I learned what it meant to truly serve someone. I discovered that investing in the lives of my guests inspired me and that each new face was an opportunity for a new friendship. My “regulars” became my extended family and that tradition has followed me into every restaurant I have worked in over the last 15+ yrs.
I met and married my wonderful husband in 2005 who was serving in the military and quickly embraced the role of military wife. We found ourselves living in sunny South Carolina and away from family. It was important to me to establish lasting friendships at our duty stations regardless of how much or how little time we were slated to stay at each command. I loved throwing dinner parties and themed events for my friends. Everywhere the Navy sent us I was able to feel at home through “the fellowship of the covered dish.” Inviting folks into our home who were also far away from their home towns was an incredible way to bond and helped me understand what people crave most in life…genuine relationships. I took this discovery and ran with it in regards to my professional life. I worked over the years in various local restaurants mostly family owned and operated and even dabbled in traveling chocolate sales for a bit.
Living in South Carolina solidified my passion for people and for working in the food and beverage industry. I was introduced to southern hospitality at its finest and worked for an incredible husband and wife team in a quaint old house built in the late 1800’s. I learned so much from watching them on a day to day basis but my biggest take away from my time there was a successful restaurant beings and ends with the folks you work with. Those relationships are just as important as the ones we make with the guest. I loved coming to work everyday and spending time with my restaurant family. I knew when it was time for us to move back home and for my husband to retire from the Navy I wanted to be somewhere I could mentor and invest in the lives of not just the folks I serve on a daily basis but also those who work with me. That’s when I met Anne and was introduced to The Stockpot. I knew from my initial meeting with her that we both lived to love on those around us whether it be through our food or our conversation we were going to make magic and really create a place where folks loved to work and loved to eat. She offered me the position as the General Manager of their new location in Downtown Norfolk, Va. and I jumped on the opportunity to live out what I had grown to love. ” – Molly Herman
VA refers to Military Sexual Trauma (MST) as the experiences of sexual harassment and/or sexual assault that occurred while one was in the military. Males and females alike can experience MST. The perpetrator can be of the same or of the opposite gender. Like other types of trauma, MST can negatively impact a person’s mental and physical health, even many years later.
This issue has gone un reported more than 90% of the time. Why? FEAR. Military’s legal system doesn’t properly allow for justice to be served. There are many reasons why and both sides can argue what is best. We are here as part of #MasterYourStory to provide a space for those who have experienced #MST to share their stories. To shed light on the dark fear and shame they have been carrying for years. Over the next few months we will be launching a book, a screenplay and approaching elected officials, such as Senator Gillibrand (D-NY) to lend support and to get connected into a network of people we can help and who can help us. Rising this up together won’t necessarily be easy, but it must be done.
More information and assistance:
For more information regarding military sexual trauma, please visit the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
For help with treatment and health care related to experiences of MST, please contact your local VA Medical Center and ask to speak to the MST Coordinator.
For help with disability compensation related to MST, please contact the MST Coordinator at your local Veterans Benefits Administration Regional Office.
For telling your story and shedding light to clear out FEAR contact MYS@sahlcomm.com
After graduating from Old Dominion University, Anne Galante worked on an organic farm in North Carolina. It was here that she connected the relationship between local, fresh food with her health and nutrition background. Eventually her adventurous spirit and passion for travel took her to the Caribbean where she landed her dream job working on a private luxury catamaran. She assisted the captain sailing and prepared meals during the journey from Honduras down the coast to Panama and Cartagena, Colombia. Experiencing local culture and meeting people from all over the world was one of the most special experiences of her life thus far.
When she arrived back in Hampton Roads, uncertain of her next move, Anne visited the Leaping Lizard Café in Virginia Beach at the behest of a friend, not knowing at the time that this is where her cooking career would take off. Anne says the experience at Leaping Lizard Café, along with her time at Pacifica and Terrapin thereafter, were all critical in creating the vision of her own restaurant. The Stockpot opened in the fall of 2015.
Away from work Anne enjoys spending time outside riding her bike, running and beach time with friends. She is endlessly inspired by travel and will continue to scheme trips near and far. She still appreciates hosting dinner parties and cooking for her friends, but only if they agree to do the dishes!