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NRA Brings Chief Operating Officer on to Implement New Strategic Plan


Gilbert will direct the activities of NRA Solutions, the NRA's wholly owned subsidiary, as well as take on an expanded leadership role within the Association. As coo, Gilbert will provide a strategic focus to key areas of the organization, increasing integration to grow membership and more effectively meet the restaurant and foodservice industry’s needs.

“David’s extensive experience in the foodservice industry makes him uniquely qualified to serve, and to succeed, as chief operating officer,” said NRA president and ceo Dawn Sweeney. “His strong strategic planning and business analysis abilities will be a tremendous asset in helping to drive our implementation of the Board approved strategic plan.”

“As we reviewed our organization and our new strategic plan, we found that years of successful organic growth of our ServSafe, ProStart, ManageFirst and other brands had produced an organization that was not fully aligned for the future,” said Sweeney. “David’s new role is key to a restructuring that is designed to position the NRA for the future.”

“In this challenging economic environment, we, like most companies, have taken a close look at what we do, and how we do it. Our changes and realignment are designed to position the NRA for growth,” said NRA chairman Michael Kaufman. “David’s operational knowledge coupled with his leadership experience makes him an ideal candidate for this position.”

Prior to joining the Association, Gilbert was a restaurant industry consultant for several years and previously served as the chief administrative officer with Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Inc. (CBOCS) for five years. . Gilbert was formerly executive vice president and chief administrative officer for Shoney's, and executive director of development for Applebee's International. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Hotel & Restaurant Administration from Florida State University.

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