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Richard E. Rivera - Partner & Co-Founder
Rivera’s company, Rubicon Enterprises LLC, is a restaurant development company based in Sarasota, Florida. The company is involved in a number of operating ventures, including Corner Bar Partners, LLC and Metz Enterprises, both of which are involved in the development and operation of casual dining restaurants (Marlow’s Tavern and TGI Friday’s, respectively).
He began his career of more than 30 years in the restaurant industry with Steak and Ale Restaurants of America. He has held executive positions with a number of leading restaurant companies, including Darden Restaurants; RARE Hospitality International, Inc.; TGI Friday’s, Inc.; Applebee’s; and El Chico Corp.
Rivera’s achievements have been recognized by numerous industry awards, including the “Golden Chain” award from Nation’s Restaurant News, and the “Restaurant Business Leadership Award.” He was also honored as one of the top restaurant operators in the U.S. with the prestigious Silver Plate award from the International Foodservice Manufacturers Association. Women’s Foodservice Forum awarded Rivera its Trailblazer Award for his commitment to the diversity of cultures, perspectives, attitudes and ideas in the workplace. In May of 2007, he was elected Chairman of the National Restaurant Association .
Mr. Rivera is past chairman and a member of the Executive Committee of the Florida Citrus Sports Association, a community-based charitable organization that sponsors, among other events, the annual Champs Sports and Capital One Bowls in Orlando, and he is active in the World President’s Organization. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Washington and Lee University, and an Honorary Doctorate of Business Administration from Johnson & Wales University.