The mission of the Georgia Restaurant Association is to serve as the voice of Georgia's restaurants in advocacy, education and awareness.
The Georgia Restaurant Association (GRA) evolved from the Georgia Restaurant Council (GRC), which was created in early 2003 by a small group of prominent Georgia restaurateurs, including Karen Bremer, Phil Hickey, Pano Karatassos, Alan LeBlanc, Perry McGuire and George McKerrow. Ron Wolf, a former executive with Atlanta-based AFC Enterprises, Inc., and Bass Hotels, was hired by the founders to be the Association's first executive director. Wolf retired in 2010. Karen Bremer was hired by the Board of Directors as Executive Director in September of 2010.
The GRA was created in response to the belief that an independent restaurant association was needed to represent Georgia's restaurant industry, which had previously been served by the Georgia Hospitality & Travel Association (GH&TA).
Today, the GRA provides a unified voice for an industry comprising over 17,000 foodservice and drinking places in the state of Georgia with total sales in excess of $17.1 billion and provides more than 421,800 jobs, second only to Agribusiness, in non-government employment.