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Our Team

Meet Our Team


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Mary co-founded Carpe DC Food Tours in 2014. After traveling all over the world, she realized the beauty of connecting to the local community and the importance of giving back. She has a passion for making the world a smaller place by connecting people to community through stories, culture and of course, food!

Prior to Carpe DC, Mary earned her M.P.A. in nonprofit and international management, worked with a Ugandan-based NGO named Paper to Pearls, children’s shelter For Children’s Sake, and the Department of Veterans Affairs.  Mary is also a ballerina turned yogi who loves to squeeze in a down dog every chance she gets.  Mary and Stefan had their first daughter a few years ago and are excited to show her the beauty of travel and cultures.


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Stefan co-founded Carpe DC Food Tours while getting his phD in Archaeology from the University of Maryland. He has a passion for the intersection of food, history and culture and loves to share his knowledge with others.

He’s an avid, master home chef. Starting at a very young age, he would stand on a chair in the kitchen to help his mom stir.  Now he’s excited to share that love of food with his and Mary’s young daughter, whose first “real” food was Japanese ramen in Okinawa, Japan.

As an archaeologist, he’s worked with countless communities and students on projects, and loves to share untold stories discovered through artifacts and research with the community they’re found in.

TIFFANY BASSFORD Tour Guide Extraordinaire

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Tiffany is a Virginia native with a lifelong love for food. She’s lived in Lyon, France and most recently, earned her master’s degree in gastronomy from the University of Gastronomic Sciences in Pollenzo, Italy. Her studies enabled her to travel to Italy, Spain, Thailand, and Japan to study and understand their food systems.

She has returned to D.C. and is passionate about the role of food in connecting people around a table. She believes that the best way to understand people is through food and the stories they share over a common meal. Tiffany is on a mission to make the table a place of passion, joy, and nourishment.

SCOTT GILBERT Tour Guide Extraordinaire

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Scott is a DMV native who joined the Carpe DC team in 2019. As a history and political science major at Towson University he spent countless hours exploring the resources available to him in Washington DC. A lover of all things food, Scott enjoys traveling the world sampling the local cuisines. His travels have included eating his way through London, Korea, Vietnam and Thailand just to name a few.

In 2018, Scott returned to the U.S and is committed to sharing his love for food and history with anybody who is willing to listen as well as to continue his quest to find the best slice of pizza in the world.

ELI FRANCO Tour Guide Extraordinaire

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After graduating from Tulane University in New Orleans in 2014, Eli spent time working in urban farming.  He moved DC in the summer of 2016 and immediately fell in love with the food and people here! Spending a few years working in higher education, Eli is excited continue his passion for education through showcasing all D.C. has to offer through CarpeDC Tours. With his farming background, he has a passion for finding restaurants striving to use local produce. On the weekends, Eli can found frequenting farmers markets, seeing live music and taking advantage of the amazing museums here.

DAVID STEELE Tour Guide Extraordinaire

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David Steele is an avid Eater from Silver Spring, Maryland. He graduated from the University of Maryland in May 2018 and he majored in Innovation & Entrepreneurship, a major he designed himself. While in school he created a capstone project examining the impact of an innovative menu design on a new restaurant concept. He has worked in and around the restaurant industry and plans to create his own restaurant concept in the future.

He has traveled around the world and found his favorite meal to be from a Mexican and Chinese fusion restaurant called China Poblano in Las Vegas, a restaurant created by DC celebrity chef Jose Andres. His favorite dish is a combination of his grandmother’s and mother’s best pasta dishes. David also enjoys learning more about the world’s history, science, and technology.

SARAH RAMSEY Tour Guide Extraordinaire

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Sarah Ramsey is a freelance writer with a love of travel, local foodways, and history. She has always been inspired by the stories of people who left the world of government cubicles to pursue their passions and has since followed their example. Always ready to explore a new restaurant, brewery/distillery, or coffee shop, she’s happy to give you a list of her favorite spots in DC and Virginia (or across the U.S. and in several countries around the world). Originally from Arkansas, she considers Virginia her second home state and Alexandria her adopted home town.


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Are you into food, history, and love DC? Want to share your passion with others? Carpe DC is looking for outgoing, dynamic, friendly people who want to show off Washington, DC’s food culture to locals and tourists alike! Great guides are fun, friendly, and love leading a crowd. We’ll provide the script–you provide the character! Prior tour experience is not required. However, knowledge of food, Washington, DC history, and local knowledge is preferred. Guides are paid hourly, plus tips. Guides must be able to commit at least two tours a week.