Anna Bond
Cofounder and creative director, Rifle Paper Company
Winter Park, FL

In just over eight years, the illustrator Anna Bond and her husband, Nathan, have transformed their small stationery company, originally based out of their garage apartment in Winter Park, Florida, into a formidable global brand. Bond’s colorful vintage-looking floral designs grace custom letterheads, thank-you notes, greeting cards, datebooks, wedding invitations, textiles, wallpapers, phone cases, recipe boxes, pencils, tote bags, coasters, and almost any other small good you can imagine. Bond has collaborated with big-name partners Anthropologie, Paperless Post, Puffin Books, L’Occitane, and Keds, to name a few.

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Asha Gomez
Chef and cookbook author, My Two Souths
Atlanta, GA

When India-born chef Asha Gomez moved to Atlanta, she discovered a surprising kinship between the culinary traditions of the American South and those of the Indian South, where she grew up. At Cardamom Hill—Gomez’s acclaimed first restaurant—the Kerala fried chicken developed a ravenous cult following. Since closing the restaurant to spend more time with her son, the self-taught chef and CARE ambassador (CARE is a nonprofit dedicated to fighting global poverty and hunger) has published My Two Souths. The award-winning cookbook explores the parallels between the region of her birth and her adopted Southern home. And yes, it includes her famous fried chicken.

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Miles Macquarrie
Co-owner and beverage director, Kimball House
Atlanta, GA

Today, Miles Macquarrie might be one of the country’s foremost classic cocktail experts, but he got his start popping the tops on pale ales, lagers, pilsners, and stouts at Atlanta’s Brick Store Pub. In 2013, he and his business partners—Bryan Rackley, Matthew Christison, and Jesse Smith—opened Kimball House, a nostalgic old-world oyster bar inside a former train depot in Decatur. Macquarrie’s innovative spins on classic cocktails utilize house-made bitters, tinctures, and fresh Georgia produce and have earned the Kimball House team a James Beard nomination for Best Bar Program for the fifth year running. Macquarrie and company are set to open Watchman’s Seafood + Spirits, a new casual dining establishment, at Krog Street Market this summer.

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Stacy Smallwood
Owner and buyer, Hampden
Charleston, SC

After a stint with Neiman Marcus’s prestigious buying program, stylist Stacy Smallwood headed to Charleston to set up shop. She opened Hampden in 2007, creating an elevated shopping experience built on service and one-on-one relationships with clothing designers and clients—she even put in a wait lounge complete with a television and a fully stocked bar. Smallwood travels to New York, London, Paris, and Milan each year to keep the stylish King Street storefront, considered one of the top boutiques in the country, stocked with the best established and emerging brands. Vogue, Town & Country, The New York Times, and Harper’s Bazaar, among other fashion titles, have all dedicated column inches to Smallwood’s efforts.

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Bobby McAlpine
Founder and one of the principal architects of McALPINE
Montgomery, AL

Alabama native and renowned architect Bobby McAlpine inked plans for his first house at age five. Today, his soulful region-inspired retreats—residences, private chapels, follies, hotels, restaurants, even a rehabilitated town—have appeared in the pages of some of the country’s top shelter magazines, including Architectural Digest, House Beautiful, Elle Decor, Traditional Home, and Veranda. He has also produced three books on the subject—his most recent retrospective, Poetry of Place, was published in 2017 to rave reviews—and he designs furniture line called McAlpine Home that is available nationwide.

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T. Edward Nickens
G&G contributing editor and author
Raleigh, NC

An expert sportsman and the author of a collection of outdoor guides, including The Total Outdoorsman Manual, Nickens puts his vast sporting knowledge to good use with his eighth appearance as a Made in the South Awards judge. He’s a frequent Garden & Gun contributor—assignments have taken him from the quail fields of the South Carolina Lowcountry to the mountains of Honduras. He also contributed to the magazine’s book S Is for Southern.

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