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National Restaurant Association, Educational Foundation Elect New Officers, Board Members

The National Restaurant Association and the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation announced today they have elected officers to their Board of Directors and Board of Trustees, respectively. The officers began their one-year terms on January 1, 2013, and recently led their first board meetings. In addition, the Association and the Educational Foundation have named several industry leaders to join their respective boards.

(Washington, D.C.) The National Restaurant Association and the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation announced today they have elected officers to their Board of Directors and Board of Trustees, respectively. The officers began their one-year terms on January 1, 2013, and recently led their first board meetings. In addition, the Association and the Educational Foundation have named several industry leaders to join their respective boards.

“The National Restaurant Association Board of Directors and the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation Board of Trustees include dynamic leaders from across the foodservice industry, all of whom play key roles and provide strategic guidance as we work to help our members continue to build successful businesses and positively impact the communities they serve,” said Dawn Sweeney, President and CEO of the National Restaurant Association and the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation. “This year, our boards are fortunate to be led by Phil Hickey and Denise Marie Fugo, industry veterans who bring tremendous experience and insight to their leadership positions as the industry faces unique challenges and an uncertain economic outlook.”

The National Restaurant Association’s 2013 officers are:

Chair: Philip J. Hickey, Jr. is CEO of Jocks II, Inc., and previously served as Chairman and CEO of two public restaurant companies, RARE Hospitality International, Inc., an Atlanta-based company whose concepts included LongHorn Steakhouse and the award-winning Capital Grille, and O'Charley's, Inc., a Nashville-based multi-concept company. A veteran of more than 37 years in the industry, in addition to having been a single restaurant owner-operator, Phil also operates a nationwide consulting business that focuses on coaching senior level executives.

Vice Chair: Marshall L. “Ken” Conrad is chairman of Libby Hill Seafood Restaurants, a nine-location company based in Greensboro, N.C. His parents founded the company in 1953 with a single restaurant. Ken began as a cook in one of his parents’ restaurants and became company president in 1983. A former chairman of the North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association, Ken served on its board for more than 20 years. He has been a member of the NRA Board of Directors since 2004.

Treasurer: Jack Crawford is President & CEO of Ground Round Independent Owners Cooperative (IOC) based in Freeport, Maine, where he is responsible for the overall leadership of Ground Round Restaurants, a chain of 30 independently owned restaurants in 12 states spread across the Midwest and Northeast areas of the U.S.  He has over 30 years of industry experience in senior leadership positions of operational and franchising disciplines, and was instrumental in leading a franchisee buyout of the Ground Round brand and franchise rights in 2004. Jack is a former chairman of the Maine Restaurant Association and has been a member of the NRA Board of Directors since 2003.

In addition, the National Restaurant Association has added new members to its board. The newly elected board directors include the following individuals:

  • Glenn Brady, President of Silver Gulch Brewing and Bottling in Fox, Alaska.
  • Ed Choe, President of Doherty Enterprises, Inc. in Allendale, N.J.
  • Don Fox, CEO of Firehouse of America in Jacksonville, Fla.
  • Susan P. Gambardella, Vice President, Wendy’s Global Account Team of Coca-Cola Refreshments in Atlanta, GA.
  • Trey Hester, President of Rocky Rococo Corporation in Oconomowoc, Wis.
  • Maureen O. Hurley, Executive Vice President / Chief Administrative Officer of Rich Products Corporation in Buffalo, N.Y.
  • Lisa Ingram, President and Chief Operating Officer, Restaurant Division of White Castle System, Inc. in Columbus, Ohio.
  • Lyndon S. Johnson, President of Reciprocity Restaurant Group LLC in Tulsa, Okla.
  • Anthony Joseph, President of Concessions International, LLC in Atlanta, Ga.
  • John Longstreet, President & CEO of Quaker Steak & Lube® in Sharon, Pa.
  • Karen L. Luey, Executive Vice President, Chief Financial & Administrative Officer of Jamba, Inc. in Emeryville, Calif.
  • Lisa McEuen, Executive Vice President of Business Excellence of Compass Group, North America in Mountain View, Calif.
  • Sheila Stanziale , President of Diageo-Guinness USA in Norwalk, Conn.
  • Kelli Valade, Chief Operating Officer of Chili’s® Grill & Bar, Brinker International, Inc. in Dallas, Texas.

The Board of Directors consists of top restaurant industry professionals who help guide the National Restaurant Association toward its vision of leading America’s restaurants into a new era of prosperity, prominence and participation, enhancing the quality of life for all it serves. These new directors will serve from January 1, 2013 - December 31, 2015.

The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation’s 2013 officers are:

Chair: Denise Marie Fugo, FMP, is chairman & CEO of Sammy's in Cleveland, Ohio, specializing in banquet, concession and restaurant management for cultural, academic and corporate venues throughout northeast Ohio. Under Denise’s leadership, Sammy’s has received the prestigious Distinguished Restaurants of North America Award and the Wine Spectator's Award for Excellence. The NRAEF named her to its distinguished College of Diplomats in 2010. Denise was 2000 Chair of the National Restaurant Association Board of Directors.

Vice Chair: Michael Gibbons is president and CEO of Mainstreet Ventures Inc. based in Ann Arbor, Mich. Since 1981, Mainstreet Ventures has set the standard for fine dining in Michigan, Ohio, West Virginia, Florida and most recently Maryland. The company's portfolio includes Real Seafood Company, Gratzi, Blue Pointe Seafood Grill & Oyster Bar, Palio Ristorante, La Dolce Vita, Tidewater Grill, Ciao, The Chop House, Zia's Italian, Carson's American Bistro and its latest concept, EO Burgers. Mike was 2009-2010 chairman of the NRA and is a former president of the Michigan Restaurant Association.

The newly elected Educational Foundation trustees include the following individuals:

  • Joyce Mazero, Partner at Haynes & Boone LLP in Richardson, Texas.
  • Walter Scheib, Former White House Chef and Owner of The American Chef Inc. in Great Falls, Va.

They join a distinguished group of prominent leaders from all sectors of the industry who are committed to providing counsel on the Educational Foundation’s strategic direction. These new trustees will serve on the Educational Foundation’s board from January 1, 2013 - December 31, 2015.

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About the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation
As the philanthropic foundation of the National Restaurant Association, the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF)’s goal is to enhance the stature of the restaurant industry. The restaurant and foodservice industry comprises 960,000 restaurant and foodservice outlets and a workforce of nearly 13 million employees, making it one of the nation's largest employers. The NRAEF’s focus is to attract, develop and retain a career-oriented professional workforce and to create a more positive business climate for the restaurant industry. For more information on the NRAEF, visit NRAEF.org

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