Hillside Farmacy executive chef Sonya Coté is in good company today. The November issue of Marie Claire hits newsstands today and features the Women on Top Awards 2012, which names Coté and 15 other influential leaders as the “Most Successful Women Under 40.”
For the third annual awards, Marie Claire editors “combed the country for the up-and-comers leading thought-revolutions, creating business and making names for themselves in fields from the military to the arts.” Among the women recognized include those who have made an imprint in the tech, military, law and performance industries.
Sonya Coté, 36, is recognized by Marie Claire as Top Foodie for her innovative work in opening iconic eatery Hillside Farmacy, which she accomplished by selling $30,000 worth of Whole Foods Market shares in 2010 — shares she accrued from working at Whole Foods Dallas at the age of 18.
Of her “Path to the Top,” Coté told Marie Claire:
I learned how to cook from my grandmother's boyfriend, a professionally trained French chef. As a teenager, I worked with amazing chefs who taught me about butchering, offal, and making my own pâté. My culinary education came from apprenticeships: That's why I'm successful. I've seen so many chefs with graduate degrees who don't know much.
The chef's “Defining Moment” details her leap into purchasing a dilapidated spot on Austin's East Side:
When an abandoned po'boy shop in my neighborhood became available, my business partners and I crunched the numbers and realized we needed $250,000 to open our own place. We scrounged up the cash and renovated, and Hillside Farmacy immediately had a line out the door.
Marie Claire recognized 16 women under 40, as well as two “Super Women” to celebrate women of any age who made an impact in 2012. Here’s the full list of Marie Claire’s Women on Top:
- Top Designer: Monique Péan, 31, founder, Monique Péan
- Top Reporter: Lara Setrakian, 30, correspondent, ABC News
- Top Techie: Jennifer Medbery, 28, founder, Kickboard
- Top Entrepreneur: Loren Brill, 28, founder and CEO, Sweet Loren’s
- Top Cop: Lanita Cullinane, 38, detective, Boston Police Department
- Top Scientist: Nina Tandon, 33, postdoctoral researcher, Columbia University
- Top Visual Artist: Anya Kielar, 34, multimedia artist and sculptor
- Top Lawyer: Mika Mayer, 36, partner, Morrison & Foerster
- Top Performer: Nina Arianda, 28, actress
- Top Architect: Kara Bartelt, 38, design principal, Lettuce Office
- Top Military Woman: Lieutenant Commander Megan Donnelly, 32, assistant strike operations officer on the USS Abraham Lincoln, U.S. Navy
- Top Foodie: Sonya Coté, 36, executive chef, Hillside Farmacy
- Top Activist: Susanna De Anda, 32, cofounder, Community Water Center
- Top Beauty Guru: Sarah Vickery, 37, global color cosmetic principal scientist, Procter & Gamble Beauty
- Super Woman: Cecile Richards, 55, President, Planned Parenthood
- Super Woman: Lisa Brown, 45, Michigan State Representative
Marie Claire's November issue, featuring Sonya Coté is on newsstands Tuesday, Oct. 23.