Famous Dave’s brings new COO on board

After a series of management shakeups, Famous Dave’s Inc. Wednesday named Abelardo “Abe” Ruiz chief operating officer of the casual-dining company.

Ruiz previously served as COO of Colon Gerena Restaurant Group—Famous Dave’s franchise operator in Puerto Rico—which owns and operates 106 units across six franchised restaurant brands.

“Abe successfully led the development of Famous Dave’s in Puerto Rico, where he opened two of our highest-volume franchised restaurants,” said Adam Wright, acting CEO of Famous Dave’s. “In addition, he brings to us a wealth of senior leadership and operating experience from a long and successful career operating and developing restaurants across multiple other concepts. He is extremely passionate about our food, our people and our company.”

Ruiz replaces Christopher O’Donnell, who was fired as president and COO of the casual-dining company in March 2014. A replacement had not been publicly named since.


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