New research from the National Restaurant Association shows that nearly 50 percent of restaurants are now owned by women.

The research also shows that restaurants employ more minority managers than any other industry, and that Hispanic restaurant ownership has increased 42 percent in the past five years.
 
“As the second largest private sector employer in the country, the restaurant industry continues to provide opportunity for millions of individuals from all backgrounds who strive to achieve the American dream,” said Scott DeFife, executive vice president for Policy and Government Affairs at the NRA.  “The numbers are impressive – more women and individuals of diverse backgrounds are becoming restaurant entrepreneurs, or are pursuing lifelong, successful careers in the industry.”

The NRA recently launched its “America Works Here” campaign, a year-long advertising campaign that will highlight some of the industry’s most impactful statistics and tell “chapters” in the restaurant industry’s story.

The first ad, launched in January, highlights the 13 million jobs created by restaurants, and the more than $1.7 trillion the industry added to the economy.

Nearly half of all Americans have worked in the restaurant industry at some point in their lives, and more than one in four adults had their first job experience in a restaurant.  Eighty percent of restaurant managers got their start as front-line employees.  Restaurants are primarily small businesses – 93 percent have fewer than 50 employees.

“Many lawmakers may not know that America’s restaurants run on an average profit margin of three to four percent,”  DeFife said. “It is critical that there is a commitment in Congress and in state capitols to a pro-business climate that helps America’s restaurants continue to be an engine of economic and job growth.”

Senior VP of membership/industry relations named

In other NRA news, the organization has named Hans Lindh as senior vice president of Membership and Industry Relations. Lindh will oversee growing and improving membership outreach and the development of strategic partnerships.

Lindh has been special advisor strategic sponsorship for the NRA since January 2010. Prior, Lindh was vice president of Restaurant Industry North America at American Express, based in New York City. In this role, he was responsible for expanding the company’s merchant business and trade relationships across the fullservice restaurant industry.

His resume also includes serving as American Express’ head of Lodging & Restaurant Industries for Europe/Africa/Middle East, based in London.

A native of Sweden, Lindh holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and lives in Greenwich, Conn.

“Hans has been a valuable member of our membership team over the past year as a special advisor, and has already greatly contributed to reaching some of our strategic goals,” said James Balda, chief marketing and communications officer for the NRA. “We are excited to have Hans join us full time to further enhance our member value propositions and partnerships with other industry organizations.”

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