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Ford’s Fish Shack’s Stafford named Virginia Restaurateur of the Year

Tony Stafford, left, is this year’s Jim Wordsworth Restaurateur of the Year Award. Courtesy Photo/Gary Cohen
Tony Stafford, owner of Ford’s Fish Shack, is this year’s recipient of the Virginia Restaurant, Lodging & Travel Association’s Jim Wordsworth Restaurateur of the Year Award.

The award recognizes a distinguished Virginia restaurateur who is a successful operator, has demonstrated exceptional leadership and has contributed to Virginia’s restaurant industry and its patrons.

“This is definitely a people business, and as long as you put your people first, you will be successful,” Stafford said in a statement. “My staff and I work very hard everyday to make sure every guest is made to feel like they are a VIP in our restaurants. When I won Virginia’s Restaurateur of the Year award, the first thing I thought was ALL of us are being recognized. I could not have won this award without their daily support. I was the one accepting this award but it actually belongs to every employee, both present and past.”

Ford’s Fish Shack has three locations in Loudoun, the newest of which is in Lansdowne Town Center.

Northern Virginia Magazine recently named Ford’s Fish Shack “Best Seafood Restaurant” for the fifth year in a row.

Stafford and his wife Ana opened the first Ford’s Fish Shack in 2010 with a mission to bring fresh-off-the-hook, New England-style seafood like lobster, crabs, oysters and sea scallops, as well as classic American favorites, to northern Virginia.

The Staffords have donated more than $50,000 in cash and food annually to organizations like Autism Speaks, American Cancer Society, Relay For Life of Loudoun County, Life With Cancer, No Kid Hungry, Boulder Crest Retreat and the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Ford’s Fish Shack has also been recognized by The Washington Post and Zagat as one of the best restaurants in the D.C. area.

Ford’s Fish Shack has locations in Ashburn, South Riding and Lansdowne. For more information, visit http://www.fordsfishshack.com.


Congratulations!  Awesome food!

Congratulations to the Staffords and the team at Ford’s!
With their original location, they proved that almost any restaurant location will work if your food is good. I had a conversation with the owner of the “The Village Grill” which once occupied the space Ford’s has been in since 2010, and he blamed all the problems VG had on the location and terrible parking at the Cameron Chase Center. I told him to his face that people will come if your food is good and your food is below average at best and your service stinks. Ford’s proved me right- good food, good service and good crowds all the time. Tony, if you are reading this, I have only one request: please add the cauliflower mash to the regular menu, that would be awesome! Thanks!

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