Tuesday, March 24 6:00am – 6:30am

RLC Running Club

Location: Departure from the Sunset Terrace (outside the Saguaro ballroom)

You just can't beat the beautiful weather and scenery of Arizona in March! Join us for an invigorating morning run around the picturesque JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa and get your day started on the right foot.

Tuesday, March 24 7:30am – 6:00pm

Registration & Information Desk

Location: Grand Canyon Ballroom Foyer
Presented By:
McLane Foodservice
NCR Corporation
PepsiCo Foodservice
Tuesday, March 24 7:30am – 6:00pm

RLC Social Enterprise Partnership Desk

Location: Grand Canyon Ballroom Foyer
Presented By:
NCR Corporation
PepsiCo Foodservice
Regal
Tuesday, March 24 7:30am – 8:30am

Networking Breakfast

Location: RLC Marketplace
Tuesday, March 24 8:00am – 8:45am

Innovation Forums

Led by the brightest professionals in foodservice, RLC's innovation forums are packed with hot topics and powerful messages designed to spark new ideas. Connect with the industry's game changers and gain valuable takeaways from the latest and greatest in foodservice innovation. There's something for everyone!

Option 1: Autonomous Trucks, the Right Ingredient for an Improved Supply Chain

Autonomous trucks are game changers for the supply chain, taking a five day cross country trip down to two days. The presentation will speak to the added safety and efficiencies that this technology will bring to the industry. Additionally, the session will have a deep dive into the technology behind TuSimple and how it will scale in 2024. 

Speakers:

Director of Government Affairs
TuSimple

Presented By:
McLane Foodservice
Option 2: Digitizing Your Kitchen: How to Orchestrate Changes in Order Volume

We now have a new normal in restaurant operations where your brand must skillfully juggle takeout, delivery, drive-thru and dine-in to remain relevant.  Newer operating models and options for digitizing your kitchen have emerged that both traditional restaurant brands and digital entrants are leveraging to adapt to the needs of changing consumers.  Join us as we share how brands big and small are creating digital kitchens to lower their costs, experiment with new concepts or expand into new markets.  

Speakers:

Executive Director
NCR Hospitality Group

Vice President of Global Hospitality Products
NCR Corporation

Presented By:
NCR Corporation
Option 3:
Presented By:
PepsiCo Foodservice
Option 4: The Tech Power Trio: Using Data to Drive Revenues & Scale

Join the CEO’s of Qu, Punchh, and SynergySuite whose companies are taking the enterprise restaurant technology space by storm with unified, data-driven strategies. Learn why today’s restaurant must leverage their data to inform their interactions through one single view of the guest across all their channels and tech stacks. We’ll discuss how you can significantly reduce the number of technology partners and points of failure; while increasing visibility into your business operations and revenue opportunities.

Speakers:

CEO
Qu Pos

Co-Founder & CEO
Punchh

CEO
SynergySuite

Presented By:
Qu
Option 5: Sizzling Insights on Guests Driving Third-Party Delivery Trends

As third-party delivery heats up, especially with Gen Z and Millennial app users, it’s crucial to understand their new path-to-purchase behavior. In partnership with Technomic, Valassis conducted a research study and will share insights on how restaurants can capture this growing audience segment, drive brand engagement, and even inspire on-premise traffic.

Speakers:

Marketing Director
Valassis

Principal
Technomic

Presented By:
Valassis
Option 6: Customizing the Guest Experience by Market Type

Satisfying consumer preferences at the local level is crucial to successful LSM campaigns and ensuring the in-store experience exceeds expectations. To understand how consumers differ across market types, DIRECTV and Technomic executed research to obtain insights into consumer attitudes, frequency, drivers, restaurant category engagement and preferences across rural, suburban and urban markets. Join Rich Shank, VP of Insights at Technomic, to explore these variances and uncover ways to drive first and return visits in every market type.

Speakers:

Principal
Technomic

Presented By:
DIRECTV/AT&T
Option 7: Food Fighters Uncensored: Restaurant Executives Off the Record

The Food Fighters podcast (thanx.com/food-fighters), sponsored by Thanx, is fast becoming the talk of the industry as influential restaurant executives share their stories and insights about how to thrive in the competitive restaurant industry. But everyone's a little more cautious on a recorded podcast — come hear from some of the amazing restaurant executives we've interviewed in the last year as they open up in this off-the-record session.

Speakers:

CEO
Thanx

CEO
Snooze, an A.M. Eatery

CEO
Tender Greens

Presented By:
Thanx
Option 8: Breaking down the myths of delivery / online ordering

Delivery is often touted as a necessary evil. The truth could not be further from this. It is considered evil because of wrongful notions surrounding this ever growing industry. We will list down some of them and objectively break down how they are wrong, and how delivery / online ordering can be used as a "profitable" growth driver for operators of all sizes - big or small.

Speakers:

Founder and CEO
ItsaCheckmate

Presented By:
ItsaCheckmate
Option 9: Unlocking the Power of a Connected Frontline Workforce

Only 13% of frontline workers believe their organization’s leadership communicates effectively, contributing to a staggering 85% of workers who report being disengaged with their jobs. The result is poor customer service, employee retention, and store performance. Some brands are bucking this trend by investing in systems and processes to keep their frontline workforce more connected. Hear leading restaurant operators share their experience managing this important transition, and the surprising success it’s yielded for their business.

Speakers:

Director of Customer Success
Crew

Presented By:
Crew
Tuesday, March 24 9:00am – 11:15am

General Session

Location: Grand Saguaro Ballroom
Technomic "State of the Industry"

Technomic will profile the current environment facing the industry with a look toward future expectations, using the most trusted global foodservice market data and insights. Overarching US economic and business issues will be discussed to provide context on restaurant industry impact. Latest restaurant industry sales data and over-arching trends that span the restaurant space and that are fueling industry growth will be revealed. Top performers in the Annual Technomic Top 1500 chain restaurant brands review will be covered along with consumer and menu-based insights factors driving success for these industry growth and leading players. Technomic will also present its 2020 forecasts for the restaurant industry, and provide perspectives for underlying growth.

Speakers:

Executive Vice President, Business Development
Technomic

Managing Principal
Technomic

2020 Restaurant Leader of the Year

The restaurant industry has seen its share of meteoric rises and spectacular collapses, a group many expected Chipotle Mexican Grill to join after sales fell by nearly a third in 2016. Yet the brand is once again proving an industry standout, not only in its approach to food and personnel, but with its head-turning financial performance. The force behind that quick rebound is CEO Brian Niccol, whose rejuvenation strategy can be summed up as “more so.” Instead of forsaking Chipotle’s heritage as a brand that refused to compromise on food and a determination to do the right thing, he brought new fervor to the commitments while finding compatible ways to raise throughput and brand awareness. His remarkable work earned Niccol an enthusiastic selection by the editors of Restaurant Business as the 2020 Restaurant Leader of the Year. Niccol will share a few thoughts before joining Winsight’s Chris Keating for a deeper dive via Q&A.

Speakers:

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Chipotle Mexican Grill

Presented By:
PepsiCo Foodservice
Leadership and Risk Management: Taking Command

Admiral William H. McRaven eloquently draws on his extensive career of 37 years of service as a Navy SEAL. The discussion addresses issues such as U.S. foreign policy, the current geopolitical landscape, leadership during high-stress situations, risk management, teamwork, resilience in the face of adversity, resourcefulness, personal accountability, and the determination to succeed.

Speakers:

Commander of U.S. Special Operations Command (2011-2014) and of U.S. Joint Special Operations Command (2008-2011)

Presented By:
McLane Foodservice
Tuesday, March 24 11:15am – 11:45am

Photo Opportunity with Admiral William H. McRaven

Location: Grand Saguaro Ballroom Foyer
Presented By:
McLane Foodservice
Tuesday, March 24 11:15am – 12:45pm

Networking Lunch

Location: Ballroom Lawn
Presented By:
NCR Corporation
Tuesday, March 24 12:45pm – 1:45pm

Personal Time

Tuesday, March 24 1:45pm – 2:30pm

Innovation Forums

Led by the brightest professionals in foodservice, RLC's innovation forums are packed with hot topics and powerful messages designed to spark new ideas. Connect with the industry's game changers and gain valuable takeaways from the latest and greatest in foodservice innovation. There's something for everyone!

Option 1: Third-party delivery disruption: Take control + protect your brand

SMG has been closely following third-party delivery trends and their impact on the restaurant industry since our first published report in 2017. Join this session for our latest research on what customers care about most + how it’s impacting their behavior, must-know data about top third-party delivery providers, and ways to regain customer loyalty after third-party delivery failures.

Speakers:

President
SMG

Presented By:
Service Management Group
Option 2: 8 Things You Don’t Want To Hear About Data...But Your Growth Depends On It

The goals of full service concepts looking to scale aren’t new—increase frequency, improve retention, acquire valuable new guests. So what’s a critical differentiating factor between brands that make it big and those that remain no big deal? Data...and how it’s put to use. Join Mike Vichich (CEO, Wisely) as he grills four industry leaders on how they overcame analysis paralysis and now use actionable insights to make decisions, improve guest experience, and grow profits. You’re guaranteed to leave with something to chew on…

Speakers:

CEO, Cofounder
Wisely

Presented By:
Wisely
Option 3: Closing the Loop of Guest Acquisition, Activation and Engagement

Existing data in your organization can drive unexpected guest acquisition, activation and engagement opportunities for your brand. This panel will discuss where to uncover and use data to identify, attract and retain new and existing customers by utilizing omni-channel media approaches including email, social media, direct mail, and loyalty.

Learn how to use your data to understand WHO your best customers are to Drive NEW CUSTOMER Traffic and increase spending of EXISTING CUSTOMERS through greater engagement. 

Speakers:

President
ADM Marketing

Presented By:
ADM Marketing
Option 4: Solving for Supply Chain

The foodservice supply chain offers incredible potential to 'make or break' a restaurant operation's success. Successful concepts utilize their supply chains to create lean end-to-end procurement networks that are scalable, safe, and reliable. Truly effective supply chain management reaches well beyond procurement to create robust data and analytics that can help gauge the strength of a concept and uncover impactful cost savings opportunities.

Hear from skilled Supply Chain Executives including operators, distribution experts and a manufacturer to learn 5 Steps to Supply Chain Success. 

Speakers:

Sr. Vice President of Supply Chain Solutions | Moderator
Buyers Edge Platform

CEO
Snooze, an A.M. Eatery

Director of National Accounts
Smithfield Foodservice

Vice President Food & Beverage
Burtons Grill

Executive Chef and Food & Beverage Director
Grimaldi’s Pizzeria

CEO
Original ChopShop and Bellagreen

Presented By:
Consolidated Concepts
Option 5: Plant-Based for Every Occasion

Learn how consumer attitudes towards plant-based menus are changing, and how menus at all types of foodservice operations are evolving to meet the growing demand.   In this session, Technomic will provide examples of successful plant-based menu launches and limited time offers for every daypart and corner of the menu, from entrees to beverages and everything in-between.  Plus, you’ll find innovative ideas from plant-forward restaurant concepts that you can apply in your operation.

Speakers:

Principal
Technomic

Presented By:
Nestlé Professional
Option 6: Mapping the Employee Journey to Maximize Engagement & Retention

Do you know the impact of an engaged candidate experience? How would your new team members rate their orientation? Their first day? Welcome to the Experience Era: where every moment can (and should) be measured throughout an employee's journey. Find out the factors that matter most when optimizing an employee lifecycle, from your hiring process to your ongoing development strategy.

Speakers:

Vice President of Solution Engineering
HotSchedules, Now Powered by Fourth

Presented By:
HotSchedules, Now Powered by Fourth
Option 7: Building Demand Beyond the Four Walls with Catering

Customers want their food when they want it, how they want it, and where they want it. To get their piece of the over $64 billion catering industry, restaurant leaders must adapt to this on-demand digital era. Hear how a panel of executives from leading restaurant brands move their exceptional guest experience beyond their four walls and expand their businesses through catering. 

Speakers:

Head of Catering Partner Business | Moderator
ezCater

President & CEO | Panelist
Fazoli's

CEO | Panelist
Saladworks

President and Chief Operating Officer | Panelist
Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt

Presented By:
ezCater
Option 8: 2020 Menu Design: How Groundbreaking Research Can Guide Profitability

Your menu is the one constant in today’s multi-faceted restaurant landscape. It is your brand’s mouthpiece, your customer’s road map, and the key to profitability. Attendees of this session will learn how the most comprehensive menu research in 30 years can guide menu design, pricing and online ordering, which now encompasses 30% of all restaurant sales. Early adopter and 45-year-old pizza brand Mellow Mushroom will share key findings from their recent menu redesign, best practices and how the process is unlocking profitability.

Conducted by Revenue Management Solutions and the University of South Florida with design provided by Norton Creative, the four-phase research study, called “The Future of Menu Design,” includes biometric lab studies, lab-based choice analysis, focus groups, and field testing by such brands as Mellow Mushroom. 

Speakers:

Vice President Brand Development
Mellow Mushroom

Chief Strategy Officer
Revenue Management Solutions

Co-Founder & CEO
Norton Creative

Option 9: Reining in Rising Labor Costs and Reducing Labor Liability

Labor is the largest variable expense restaurateurs face on a recurring basis. Restaurants create the so called “Perfect Storm” for labor compliance issues. Come learn how to keep costs under control without spending an arm and a leg. There is not another suite on the market that can handle every need of a busy food service establishment. Discover how to effectively enhance your employee and customer experiences while keeping those pesky costs under control.

Speakers:

CEO
Altametrics

Manager, Enterprise Sales
Altametrics

Presented By:
Altametrics
Option 10: Zoodles and Pie – How Uber Connected Front Lines Drive Results

What’s behind the best concepts in the world? People that know how to execute. Hear from the leaders at Blaze Pizza and Noodles & Company on how they leverage mobile-first technology to achieve insane levels of employee engagement and connect their front lines to key corporate initiatives that drive consistent results. Join the interactive discussion and learn first-hand how to achieve 90+% employee engagement that drives revenue, reduces operational costs, and improves overall customer satisfaction.

Speakers:

Chief Restaurant Officer
Blaze Pizza

VP of Training & Operational Initiatives
Noodles & Company

CEO
PlayerLync

Presented By:
PlayerLync
Option 11: Activating Anonymous Guest Data: Increase ROI & Drive Repeat Guests

On average, you know only a fraction of your guests. They’ve opted into online ordering or loyalty, but otherwise they are a mystery. During this session we’ll dig into unlocking menu, credit card and operational data to identify patterns in anonymous guest behavior; optimizing marketing spend; and driving operational efficiency.

Speakers:

Director of Enterprise Solutions
Toast

Presented By:
Toast
Tuesday, March 24 2:30pm – 3:00pm

Networking Break

Tuesday, March 24 3:00pm – 4:30pm

General Session

Women’s Foodservice Forum Introduces its New CEO

Please join us as we welcome the new President & CEO of Women’s Foodservice Forum to Restaurant Leadership Conference. Spend a few minutes with Therese Gearhart to learn more about how her vision for the organization will accelerate the advancement of women leaders in the Foodservice Industry. 

Speakers:

President & CEO
Women’s Foodservice Forum

Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
McLane Foodservice
888.792.9300

Patrick Doyle on the Changing Face of Restaurants

The former CEO of Domino’s Pizza, and now Executive Partner with The Carlyle Group, will share his views on the digital transformation of the restaurant business, and how companies can use digital strategies to drive revenue growth and value creation. In this conversation with Restaurant Business Executive Editor Jonathan Maze, he will explain how other companies can follow Domino’s example of using technology to improve the customer experience and drive returns for shareholders.

Speakers:

Executive Partner
The Carlyle Group

America: A Ten Point Plan for a Return to Civility

For nearly four decades, Dennis Miller has been entertaining audiences across television, film, and on stages throughout the country with his acerbic wit and trademark “rants” on politics and pop culture. Equal parts comedian and social commentator, Dennis’s scathing-yet-playful perspective reminds audiences not to take themselves (or anyone else for that matter) too seriously. In such polarizing times, his pragmatic take on the world is refreshing. The Hollywood Reporter called his most recent special,” Fake News, Real Jokes” an hour of topical, scathing brilliance [. . .] the most cerebral, astute and clever stand-up ever to put mouth to microphone.

Miller’s next initiative is an inventive and humorous presentation—in his own words—“America: A Ten Point Plan for a Return to Civility. A how-to on disagreeing in a more agreeable manner. No sturm und drang, no lecturing, no scolding. Quite simply, a perceptive, tangible approach to sharing the sandbox with each other again.

Speakers:

Five-time Emmy Award-winning Comedian & Political Commentator

Tuesday, March 24 4:30pm – 6:00pm

RLC Marketplace

Location: Grand Canyon Ballroom & Foyer

With almost 200 suppliers on display, you're sure to find all the industry-shapers within the RLC Marketplace. It's all about the connections you make and the hands you'll shake here, where suppliers and operators gather to uncover the latest solutions, sample new products and even close deals.

Presented By:
McLane Foodservice
Tuesday, March 24 4:30pm – 6:00pm

Happy Hour

It's time for everyone's favorite hour … happy hour! Take a well-deserved break, and mix and mingle among the displays in the Restaurant Product Gallery. With almost 200 suppliers on display, you're sure to find all the industry-shapers within the RLC Marketplace. It's all about the connections you make and the hands you'll shake here, where suppliers and operators gather to uncover the latest solutions, sample new products and even close deals.

Presented By:
HotSchedules, Now Powered by Fourth
Tuesday, March 24 4:30pm – 5:15pm

Photo Opportunity with Dennis Miller

Location: In the RLC Marketplace
Tuesday, March 24 4:30pm – 5:15pm

Meet & Greet with Women's Foodservice Forum CEO, Therese Gearhart

Location: In the RLC Marketplace at the McLane Booth
Tuesday, March 24 6:00pm – 10:00pm

Sponsor Tear Down

Location: Grand Canyon Ballroom & Foyer
Tuesday, March 24 7:30pm – 8:30pm

Dinner on Your Own

Tuesday, March 24 8:30pm – 10:30pm

RLC After Dark

Location: Patio at Twenty6

For the perfect “nightcap” following a busy day of networking, learning and deal-making, meet friends and colleagues on the gorgeous patio at Twenty6. Light refreshments and specialty beverages will complete the festivities - along with you!

Presented By:
ezCater