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Michael Mina relinquishes CEO duties to an unexpected choice

Chef Michael Mina

Celebrity chef Michael Mina has relinquished his duties as CEO of Mina Group to chain veteran Bill Freeman in order to spend more time developing new concepts for the 25-restaurant operation, according to media reports from San Francisco.

Mina reportedly wanted to shed his administrative duties to spend more time brainstorming and tinkering in his kitchens.

Although Freeman has spent much of his career leading restaurant chains, the concepts were often at the pricier end of the market. Among his charges as CEO were McCormick & Schmick’s, the polished-casual seafood chain, and Bertucci’s, the Italian regional chain where he also served as chairman.

Mina, age 47, has said he wanted to spend more time cooking and conceptualizing than managing his 1,800 employees, who work in restaurants located from San Francisco, Mina Group’s headquarters, to Washington. One of his best-known concepts is Bourbon Steak.

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