Rob Gifford has been named executive vice president of political advocacy for the National Restaurant Association, effective Feb. 7. In this role, he will work to advance the association’s political impact and ability to organize and mobilize at local, state and federal levels.

Gifford has served as president and CEO of the Michigan Restaurant Association for more than 18 years. During his time at the MRA, the Michigan Information Research Service Insider Survey named the association one of the top five lobbying organizations in the state.

Prior to this role, Gifford worked in government relations at the NRA.

"Rob's breadth of experience, both in the industry and within the state restaurant association community, make him the ideal choice to lead this important growth effort," said Dawn Sweeney, president and CEO of the NRA.  "Rob's talents will take the association's political advocacy and reach to another level – enabling industry advocates across the country to come together to fight for the best interests of the restaurant community."

Founded in 1919, the NRA is the leading business association for the restaurant industry, which comprises 945,000 restaurant and foodservice outlets.

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