John Vincent

Co-founder and CEO, LEON Restaurants

Guest Speaker

Biography

John Vincent has dedicated his working life to trying to make things better. With Allegra McEvedy and Henry Dimbleby, John founded the naturally fast food chain LEON, where he has been CEO since 2014.

LEON has set the standard for what fast food can be, and has shown that the principles of the Mediterranean diet can be applied to fast food that tastes good, does you good and that is kind to the planet.

 

John is leading the expansion of LEON in both Europe and the US, with restaurants already opened in Amsterdam, Utrecht, Rotterdam, Oslo, Gran Canaria and Washington DC.

 

John and Henry have also led a transformation in how children eat and relate to food in schools. In 2012, the pair were asked by the coalition government to lead the development of a School Food Plan, which resulted in, amongst other things, free school meals for all infants – helping to fix the broken economics of school food and ensuring that every child aged five to seven is guaranteed a hot meal every day. They also secured practical cooking of savoury food on the national curriculum for the first time and new legislation to improve standards.

 

John and Henry were awarded the FIRST award for Responsible Capitalism in 2015 and in 2017, the Raymond Blanc Special Award for their work on school food and leading sustainability in the restaurant sector.

John has co-written seven LEON cookbooks, which have been published internationally. The latest cookbook came out in October 2018. John, along with his team, has also developed a range of LEON cookware and kitchenware with John Lewis.

 

He was awarded an MBE for his services to school food in 2015.