“This organization does not exist in our community, but rather for and because of our community, both local & global.” – Matt Haley, Founder, President, & CEO, The Matt Haley Companies
At the core of the Matt Haley Companies always has been and always will be community. In the spring of 2001, we started as 1 restaurant in a sleepy beach town. 88 seats, a water view, and a driven chef-owner was all that was needed to light the fuse on what is today one of the fastest growing & most diverse companies in Delaware.
We feed our community – MHC currently owns and or operates 25 restaurants, foodservice outlets, and liquor stores in 4 states. In the peak of our busy season, we employ upwards of 1000 people, and serve 25,000 meals a week. We operate the fastest- growing catering company in Delaware, providing service for events as intimate as a 50th anniversary for 2 people, or as expansive as a prom for 500 high schoolers.
We enrich our community – MHC, through SoDel Films, produces films that represent a grassroots community-minded effort either globally or locally. Our films aim to convey a message of hope, compassion, and understanding.
We give back to our community – In addition to the $5-10 million a year contributed annually through tax revenue, the MHC facilitates local and international philanthropy through the Global Delaware Fund. Domestically, the GDF has contributed funds and services to the Delaware Adolescent Program, The Boys &amp; Girls Club, The Food Bank of Delaware, The Delaware KIDS Fund, Children &amp; Families First, The Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition, Camp Barnes, Casa San Francisco, The United Way of DE, and countless others. Overseas, the GDF has funded two Nepali schools &amp; scholarships annually for 50 children grades 2-10, a boys orphanage in India, and provided computers to schools in Nicaragua. Personally, Matt is president of La Esparanza, and a board member of the Josh Freeman Foundation. Additionally, he works with the Delaware state government in a variety of avenues, including the DE Dept of Corrections Advisory Board, and the Governor’s Commission on Early Education and the Economy. He is also working with the Secretary of Agriculture on a variety of projects aiming to bridge the divide between the farms of Southern and Central DE and the underprivileged inner cities of Northern DE.
On February 3, 2014, it was announced that Matt Haley would be this year’s recipient of the James Beard Foundation’s Humanitarian of the Year Award. For many people, receiving a recognition of this magnitude would mark an end of sorts – the acknowledgement that a lifetime of selfless dedication had made an undeniable difference on the world. For Matt and everyone who is a part of the Matt Haley Companies, we all know it is merely the beginning.