Kevin Brown brings more than 35 years of experience and leadership in the restaurant industry to his position as President and Chief Executive Officer of Lettuce Entertain You® Enterprises, Inc. (LEYE).
As President and CEO of Lettuce, Kevin is first and foremost a restaurateur, directing the ongoing innovation and development of new concepts, while strategically expanding and improving existing successful Lettuce restaurants. Kevin works closely with Chairman and Founder, Richard Melman, and other key members of the Lettuce senior management team to nurture and grow the organization. As a role model and mentor to multiple generations of Lettuce employees, Kevin epitomizes the very best in corporate stewardship.
A Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania native, Kevin obtained his B.A. from Michigan State University. He was the first candidate Rich Melman interviewed on a college campus in 1977 and upon graduating later that year, was offered a job at R.J. Grunts, the original Lettuce restaurant.
In his early years, Kevin held leadership positions at numerous Lettuce restaurants including The Pump Room and Un Grand Café, where in 1981 he was awarded his first partnership opportunity. He later developed some of Lettuce’s most popular restaurants including Shaw’s Crab House, Mity Nice Bar & Grill and the highly successful Big Bowl, which opened May 1992, and was followed by several additional stores that were eventually sold to Brinker International.
Kevin strongly values the role of creating opportunities within the organization. He feels that Lettuce’s strongest asset is its people, and he believes his job and greatest responsibility is to make others successful.
Throughout his career at LEYE, Kevin’s own successes were rewarded with increased responsibilities. He was made President of Lettuce in 2000 and in 2003, Kevin was officially named both President and CEO of Lettuce Entertain You.
Kevin is a committed participant in the community and dedicates time to civic duties as a trustee of the University of Chicago Medical Center, a member of The Eli Broad College of Business Alumni Board of Directors at Michigan State University, a member of the Economic Club of Chicago, the Executive Club of Chicago, the Commercial Club of Chicago, as well as a member of both the Illinois Restaurant Association and National Restaurant Association.
Looking forward, Kevin’s goal is to maintain and enhance Lettuce Entertain You’s reputation as well as its entrepreneurial spirit. He wants to continue to take care of people, both guests and employees, which is where his love for the hospitality industry truly stems from.