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National Restaurant Association President and CEO Dawn Sweeney has been named a "No Kid Hungry Hero" by Share Our Strength. She was honored at a June 4 awards dinner in Washington, D.C., benefitting Share Our Strength's No Kid Hungry campaign.

"I am humbled to accept this recognition on behalf of the restaurant industry," Sweeney said. "Restaurateurs are natural philanthropists who reach out to help those experiencing hard times by rallying their employees and customers in causes like the Dine Out for No Kid Hungry campaign. The National Restaurant Association and our members are proud to be a Share Our Strength partner fighting childhood hunger."

According to Share Our Strength President Tom Nelson, approximately 8,200 restaurants participated in the Dine Out in 2012, raising a total of nearly $6 million. He credited this success to the support of the NRA.

"Restaurants have always been the backbone at Share Our Strength," added Debbie Shore, co-founder of Share Our Strength. "In fact, they've raised over $100 million to fight childhood hunger. When we launched the Dine Out in 2008, the first person we went to was Dawn Sweeney at the National Restaurant Association. Her response was, 'Absolutely, yes, we want to get on board as a national partner.'"

Shore noted that Sweeney has actively promoted the campaign to NRA members and state partners, calling her personal outreach to the industry "powerful."

Read more about cause marketing initiatives.

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