Polio Survivor
Feb 04, 2021
Ina Pinkney
Polio Survivor

Breakfast Queen

Ina was the Chef/Owner of INA’S, an American food restaurant in the West Loop Market District, which closed at the end of 2013.


She is a frequent and welcome guest on radio, local news and cable TV, has done interviews on shows in the U.S., Canada and Germany and appeared in a national Quaker Oats commercial as herself – the Breakfast Queen.


Articles about her have appeared in local, national and international newspapers and magazines, as well as trade and in-flight magazines. Her recipes have been syndicated globally and featured in many cookbooks.


Ina has been a guest lecturer on Entrepreneurship at Northwestern University, DePaul University and the University of Illinois, and has been the keynote speaker at several culinary school graduations.


In 2014, Ina was awarded the Golden Whisk Award from the Women Chefs and Restaurateurs Organization for excellence in the kitchen, led a coalition of Chicago restaurateurs and chefs to support Chicago’s smoking ban and co-founded the Green Chicago Restaurant Coalition with Dan Rosenthal, for which they received Chicago Magazine’s 2011 Green Award.


She was named 2008 SBA Woman in Business Champion.


In 2013, she published Taste Memories: Recipes for Life and Breakfast so that her recipes would live in everyone’s home.


Despite the awards and acclaim she has garnered in her career, the most significant title she holds is polio survivor. Ina now speaks to Rotary groups about the late effects of polio in her effort to help Rotary and the Gates Foundation achieve their goal of the worldwide eradication of polio.