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About Adeola

As an accomplished sports, entertainment and hospitality maven, Adeola Sokunbi has proven within her career track that being brave enough to pivot opens up a world of opportunities. With early successes working for global brands like Warner Media (formally Turner Broadcasting Company), the PGA, The Coca-Cola Company during the 2012 London Olympic Games and Georgia’s highly ranked sports and entertainment complex, the Georgia World Congress Center Authority for almost a decade; Sokunbi has continued to build a reputation for contributing to and inspiring meaningful work that has produced millions of dollars and impacted millions of people. 

 

She began to lay the foundations of her career while in college, where she worked in several restaurants in both front and back of house positions, developing skills in customer service, cost control, and employee training. After graduating from Georgia State University’s School of Hospitality, Adeola began overseeing contract negotiations for major festivals, concerts, and sporting events at iconic venues like Centennial Olympic Park, Georgia World Congress Center, and Mercedes Benz Stadium. Her work ethic, determination to be successful, and her skill to network with intention opened the doors for her to lend logistical expertise to marquee events such as the Men’s NCAA Final Four and Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta.

A lifelong learner, with managerial experience in executing major events under her belt, in 2019 Sokunbi decided to go through the arduous process of completing her certification through the International Association of Venue Managers (IAVM); becoming a certified venue professional (CVP). 

While continuing to dive into the sports and entertainment space, Sokunbi also made time to pour into her love for cooking and creating community inspired by delicious meals. She launched the Yolaskitchen®️ Dinner Party series, where friends, family and even coworkers would come together to enjoy dishes created by Adeola that were from different parts of the world. While hosting these events she began to experiment with different flavors, which lead to the creation of Ade Spice®️ - a ready to eat sauce blend of peppers, that she now produces within a specialty kitchen and sells nationwide. Her sauce is now known within the culinary community and continues to gain popularity as other chefs experiment with dishes of their own and Ade Spice®️ combined. 

With an already successful and still budding career in the culinary and event management industries, Sokunbi still felt like there was more to do and learn! In 2019 she sought to combine her business acumen with legal expertise by completing her Masters at the University of Georgia’s School of Law, graduating in 2020. With a focus on business law, Sokunbi lends her legal skills to hospitality focused businesses through her consulting firm, AYO Hospitality & Consulting Services. Her client portfolio ranges from small businesses and local restaurants to large food service operators.

In an effort to give back and use her industry experience for good, she joined forces with the Navigate Foundation, a nonprofit that provides leadership skills to local high school culinary programs which allow students to be paired with industry chefs and gain invaluable leadership experience while helping fill the labor shortage gap experienced during the pandemic.

She is also a registered mediator in the state of Georgia, and in her spare time she remains dedicated to mentoring the next generation of professionals, serving as an Adjunct Professor teaching Hospitality Law at her alma mater Georgia State University.

Sokunbi has been able to combine her passions for hospitality, culinary art, the intricacies of law, event management and more to create an impressive career track that expands across industries. Her commitment to ensuring that her work matters and leaves a legacy gives her the titles of Innovator, Creator, Educator, Visionary and more. 

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Table 86 - Creating Culinary Experiences

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