Rich Renninger was named Chief Development Officer for Darden Restaurants in July 2016. He is responsible for real estate research and strategic planning, real estate development, design and construction, asset management, remodels, and facilities management for Darden and its operating companies.
Darden owns and operates more than 1,600 Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen, Yard House, The Capital Grille, Seasons 52, Bahama Breeze and Eddie V’s restaurants in North America, employing 165,000 people and serving 380 million guests annually.
Rich is a proven strategic leader with more than 20 years of diverse experience and expertise in the restaurant industry. Prior to joining Darden, he served as Chief Development Officer for First Watch. In this role, Rich was responsible for new restaurant development, strategic planning and franchise development. Prior to joining First Watch in 2012, he worked for OSI Restaurant Partners — now Bloomin’ Brands — as Executive Vice President & Chief Development Officer. Before joining OSI, Rich served as Vice President of Real Estate for Rare Hospitality International, Inc.
Rich holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Harvard University.