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The National Restaurant Association is a restaurant industry business association in the United States, representing more than 380,000 restaurant locations.[3] It also operates the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation.[3] The association was founded in 1919 and is headquartered in Washington, D.C.[3]

National Restaurant Association
National Restaurant Association logo.svg
Formation1919; 100 years ago (1919)
Legal status501(c)(6) trade association[1]
PurposeTo serve its members by advancing and protecting America's restaurant and food service industry with the goals to build industry influence, build industry image, and build industry engagement.[1]
Headquarters2055 L Street NW,
Washington, D.C. 20036, U.S.
Joe Essa[2]
Dawn Sweeney[2]
SubsidiariesNational Restaurant Association Solutions LLC,
National Registry of Food Safety Professionals Inc,
National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (501(c)(3)),
National Restaurant Association Military Foundation (501(c)(3)),
Multicultural Foodservice and Hospitality Alliance (501(c)(3)),
Restaurant Law Center (501(c)(6)),
National Restaurant Association Services LLC[1]
AffiliationsNRA Political Action Committee (PAC)[1]
Revenue (2016)
Expenses (2016)$98,974,477[1]
Endowment$12,569,974 (2016)[1]
Employees (2016)
Volunteers (2016)

Dawn Sweeney is its president and CEO.[4] The 2012 Chair of the Board is Roz Mallet of PhaseNext Hospitality.[5] Recent association chairs included Sally J. Smith of Buffalo Wild Wings and Edward R. Tinsley of New Mexico, the franchiser of K-Bob's Steakhouse restaurant chain.[3]



The National Restaurant Association, widely referred to as "the other NRA" to distinguish itself from National Rifle Association, which shares the initialism, is a powerful lobbying force in Washington, DC, and in state capitals. It is very active in fighting efforts to retain the minimum wage in the United States as well as laws requiring paid sick leave. In July 2013, it boasted that it had successfully lobbied against raises in the minimum wage in 27 of 29 states and blocked paid sick leave legislation in 12 states.[6] It also takes credit for halting any increase in the federal minimum wage for tipped employees, which has remained at $2.13 per hour since 1991.[7][8]

The NRA supported the Fighting Hunger Incentive Act of 2014 (H.R. 4719; 113th Congress), a bill that would amend the Internal Revenue Code to make permanent extend and to expand certain expired provisions that provided an enhanced tax deduction for businesses that donated their food inventory to charitable organizations.[9] The NRA argued that "the deduction for charitable donation of food inventory is a critical tool in alleviating hunger" because it "encourages donating the food to charity, by helping to offset the costs associated with preserving, storing and transporting the extra food."[10]

The NRA opposed the National Labor Relations Board's joint employer standard, but was unable to affect a change in legislation repealing the standard.[11]

Other programsEdit

The National Restaurant Association develops food safety training and certification program for restaurant employees.[12] It also offers scholarships to foodservice and hospitality management and culinary students through NRAEF, and it runs a national program for high school students.[13] The NRA also presents a series of awards, including the Faces of Diversity, the American Dream Awards, and the Restaurant Neighbor Award [14]

It runs an annual restaurant and hospitality industry trade show in the US, in Chicago, and conducts research about the country's restaurant industry.[15] For instance, it states that the restaurant industry in the US and is growing rapidly and now employs 12.9 million Americans in 970,000 locations, with sales in 2012 expected to reach $632 billion.[3]

The National Restaurant Association also helps restaurant owners increase their environmental sustainability efforts.[16]

In addition, the National Restaurant Association teamed up with Healthy Dining to launch Kids LiveWell, a program that helps restaurants increase healthful options on kids' menus and makes it easy for parents to find those options when dining out.[17]

The association works closely with its state restaurant and hospitality association partners and provides its members with tools and solutions to improve their business.[18] It also organizes conferences and networking events for its members. There are six membership categories: Restaurant, Allied, Faculty, Student, Nonprofit, and International.[19]

The association lobbies for the restaurant and foodservice industry and represents the industry on Capitol Hill.[20] It was the largest food and beverage political action committee contributor to both the U.S. Democratic and Republican Parties in the 2004 election cycle.[21]

The association is actively opposing the lowering of the federal blood alcohol content limit from .08% to .05% [22]

Notable peopleEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Form 990: Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax". National Restaurant Association. Guidestar. December 31, 2016.
  2. ^ a b "Board Officers". National Restaurant Association. Retrieved June 4, 2019.
  3. ^ a b c d e About the National Restaurant Association National Restaurant Association
  4. ^ National Restaurant Association President and CEO Archived 2010-04-20 at the Wayback Machine Dawn Sweeney, President & CEO bio
  5. ^ National Restaurant Association Chair 2012
  6. ^ Rosenfeld, Steven (August 28, 2013). "The other NRA: How the National Restaurant Association ensures poverty wages". Retrieved 2013-12-20.
  7. ^ Jamieson, Dave (June 2, 2012). "Minimum Wage For Restaurant Servers Remains Stagnant For 20 Years Under Industry Lobbying". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 2013-12-20.
  8. ^ Mark Fiore (May 14, 2014). “Hard to Stomach”. Moyers & Company. Retrieved June 14, 2014.
  9. ^ "CBO - H.R. 4719". Congressional Budget Office. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  10. ^ DeFife, Scott. "Letter to Congressman Reed". National Restaurant Association. Retrieved 16 July 2014.
  11. ^ Levine, Marianne; Lippman, Daniel; Evich, Helena Bottemiller (June 15, 2018). "Top lobbyist for restaurant group departs amid internal discord". Politico. It has pushed for repeal of the National Labor Relations Board’s so-called joint employer standard, but the Obama administration’s standard, which broadened the scope under which a franchiser could be held liable for labor law violations of a franchisee, remains in place. The group hasn’t been able to wrangle enough votes in favor of a Senate bill that would repeal the standard nor was it able to attach the repeal onto the most recent omnibus spending bill.
  12. ^ ServSafe Food Safety ServSafe Food Safety website.
  13. ^ ProStart ProStart website.
  14. ^ "Restaurant Industry Awards - National Restaurant Association". Archived from the original on March 2, 2012. Retrieved March 21, 2019.
  15. ^ NRA Show NRA Show website
  16. ^ Conserve: Solutions for Sustainability Conserve: Solutions for Sustainability website.
  17. ^ Kids LiveWell Kids LiveWell website.
  18. ^ State restaurant associations.
  19. ^ State restaurant associations State restaurant associations.
  20. ^ National Restaurant Association Advocacy & Representation
  21. ^ "Food & Beverage PAC Contributions to Federal Candidates, 2003-2004". The Center for Responsive Politics. Retrieved 2008-03-13.
  22. ^ Frumkin, Paul (May 14, 2013). "NTSB proposes lowering legal blood alcohol limit for driving; Restaurant industry associations oppose the proposed reduction from 0.08 to 0.05". Nation's Restaurant News. Retrieved 2013-12-20.
  23. ^ Cain, Herman. This Is Herman Cain!: My Journey to the White House, Appendix B (2011)
  24. ^ Ko, Michael (11 January 2003). "Seattle restaurant legend Victor Rosellini dies at 87". Seattle Times. Retrieved 24 October 2014.
  25. ^ [1] National Restaurant Association

External linksEdit