Iconic Chicago chef Rick Bayless honored with 'Making History Award'

It’s been a banner year for iconic Chicago chef Rick Bayless.

Following the celebration of the anniversary of his renowned Frontera Grill and the declaration of an honorary "Rick Bayless Day" by the mayor, Bayless is now being honored with the Chicago History Museum’s "Making History Award."

Bayless, celebrated for his Michelin-starred restaurants and popular airport outposts, is also known for his extensive philanthropic work in the city. He hosts a PBS show, runs a YouTube channel, and supports numerous local initiatives. However, it’s his dedication to the local theater community that earned him the latest accolade.

"It was his support of the theater companies here in Chicago. You know, Chicago is a great theater town, but our research showed that he was focusing on smaller, up-and-coming theaters or those that needed just a little bit of extra support to get them to the next level," said Michael Anderson of the Chicago History Museum.

The Bayless Family Foundation awards Steppingstone Grants to area theaters, and Bayless himself has appeared in local theater shows.

Bayless will be joined by five other honorees who exemplify visionary business leadership, entrepreneurship, and innovation at the awards ceremony.