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April 4, 2016

Women lead the way in America’s restaurants

By National Restaurant Association Staff

Today, in every aspect of society — from government, to business, to the arts, and beyond — we find innumerable examples of women leadership and benefit from the many significant contributions they have made.

While it might not be the first place one would think to look, there is one popular institution present in virtually every community where the success story of women could not be any more compelling: America’s restaurants.

As the nation’s second-largest private sector employer, restaurants have driven our nation’s economic recovery from the Great Recession — and that growth has been led by women. During the last decade, the number of women-owned restaurants increased by 40%, compared to 12% growth in all restaurant business over that same time span. Put another way: restaurants owned by women grew at a rate three-times faster than the industry as a whole. Today, half of all U.S. restaurants are either owned or co-owned by women.

Restaurants truly are an industry with no glass ceiling: we have more women owners and managers than any other industry in our nation. And the opportunities women have found in restaurants extend far beyond ownership. Sixty-one percent of adult women have worked in a restaurant at some point in their life, and 37 percent got their first job in one. From students to retirees and servers to owners, millions of women are finding their pathways to success in restaurants.

Read more at the Huffington Post