Chris Davidson, Owner Mama D’s Italian Kitchen
- Written byLaura Watts
Mama D’s Italian Kitchen is a family/neighborhood restaurant that features great food, value and service. Owner Chris Davidson, who opened the restaurant in 1992, has worked in the food service business for 37 years.
Tell us about American Martyrs.
“We do a lot of fundraisers with them, helping with any events they have. My family is part of the parish. Mama D’s Italian Kitchen and American Martyrs together support the kids in the community by having a reading calendar to encourage reading. If the kids read for 15 to 30 minutes a day, after the fifth day they get a free kids pizza from Mama D’s.”
How do the philanthropic efforts of your business make our community a better place?
“We give so much, and the more we give, the community gives back. This makes the community become closer together—a lot of support!”
What are the biggest benefits of making social responsibility a priority?
“The good feeling that you’re giving back to the community that has supported your business for more than 21 years.”
Who or what has had a positive impact on your life and influenced you to become a philanthropist?
“Mama D. She always taught us the importance of helping people and the community.”
What’s most rewarding about your work?
“Seeing the families enjoying dinner together. Seeing the kids having fun, running around and enjoy being at a restaurant they can be kids at.”
What motivates you to combine your passion for your business with your desire to give back?
“The more I give, the more I get back. We are a family restaurant, and the community has given us so much support, we feel really happy to give back and support our community.”
For the record, Michael Cohen is not Michael Stars.
And though he and his wife are unquestionably the driving force behind the successful “casual couture” t-shirt business bearing that recognizable moniker, he prefers to walk through his Downtown Manhattan Beach neighborhood with an air of anonymity — just another local out for a cup of coffee or ice cream around the block. And how can you blame him? Years before “Stars” ever entered his life, Michael was an artist enjoying the coastal comforts of living in the South Bay.