Preventing child abuse in MD

UPDATE: The 29th Annual Great Chefs’ Dinner is canceled.

These are unprecedented times, and we are all learning how to respond together. For the families we serve, who were already struggling to stay afloat, this COVID-19 pandemic will create new challenges that few could have otherwise imagined. Whether it’s keeping children safe and engaged due to school closures, or how to deal with an abusive family member at home in isolation, The Family Tree will continue to be a resource for Maryland’s families throughout this crisis.

Last week, we made the difficult decision to cancel the upcoming Great Chefs’ Dinner, planned for April 7th, 2020. This is not a decision we came to lightly, as this is our largest fundraiser of the year and provides critical support to run our programs. But, we must all come together and do what is best for the most vulnerable in our communities, and right now that means practicing social distancing, which includes Governor Larry Hogan’s guidelines prohibiting events and gatherings of over 50 people. A special thank you to Chef Melissa Kelly for her understanding and support at this time.

If you are interested in helping to cover our shortfall and ensure that we can continue to be a vital resource to families, you can donate here. We understand that so much is still uncertain, but we are so grateful for the community we’ve built together over the last few decades, and we will work tirelessly to help our families emerge from this chapter of their lives as strong, healthy, and resilient as possible.

Thank you, and be safe.


The Great Chefs’ Dinner is one of Maryland’s finest culinary events, and The Family Tree’s largest fundraiser. In its 29th year, the Great Chefs’ Dinner engages over 400 community leaders in the prevention of child abuse and neglect in Maryland. We can’t wait to sit down next Spring for another fabulous evening together!


What to Expect

The Great Chefs’ Dinner features a 5-course meal with paired wines, a live and silent auction, and raising awareness and funds for the prevention of child abuse in Maryland.


What to Wear: Business / Cocktail Attire


Who’s Cooking

Chef Melissa Kelley is the Executive Chef and proprietor of Primo, a restaurant located in mid-coast Maine. She is the 2013 James Beard Foundation Award winner of the American Express Best Chef: Northeast Award. She also received this award in 1999, making her the first 2-time winner of the same award. 

Learn more about the Chef…



Where is it

The Grand Lodge of Maryland

304 International Circle

Cockeysville, MD 21030.

Get directions…



Reach out today for more information about our various sponsorship opportunities and benefits.


Sad to hear, but we hope to see you next year. Meanwhile, please consider supporting our work. Thank you!

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