The Iowa Restaurant Association will present its annual state hospitality awards at the Community Choice Convention Center in Des Moines on Nov. 15. Jessica Dunker, president and CEO of the association, said this year’s winners “exemplify diversity and opportunity in our industry.” The winners range from an entrepreneur who built a national pizza chain to an award-winning chef to an immigrant restaurateur who has introduced Iowans to signature African dishes. “There is a reason the honorees and their establishments have not just survived, but thrived, in a post-COVID recovery,” Dunker said in a release announcing the award winners. Registration is open for the Iowa Hospitality Showcase & Celebrating Excellence Awards ceremony, which this year will also feature vendor booths that will be of interest to hospitality industry professionals, along with the Grand Tasting, which will feature eight to 10 chefs competing for prizes, and a dessert salon along with beer and wine samplings.