Lewis Rudd is President and Co-Founder of Ezell’s Famous Chicken. After waiting six years for initial funding, the family opened the first Ezell’s Famous Chicken store on February 3, 1984 in Seattle's Central District. Since opening, Ezell’s was featured in Esquire Magazine as the Most Life-Changing Fried Chicken in America and has made many famous fans including Oprah Winfrey, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Quincy Jones, Norm from “Cheers”, Danny Glover, George Foreman and the Seattle Seahawks. Ezell's Famous Chicken has grown to 17 fast casual locations with more than 325 employees, and built a brand that is recognized nationally.
Rudd is very active in the Seattle community supporting many organizations. In August 2021, Lewis and his brother Darnell Rudd, along with their sister Faye Stephens, introduced the Rudd’s R.U.B.B. (Raising Up Black Businesses) Initiative, a precedent-setting initiative designed to financially empower Black-owned businesses in the Pacific Northwest.
Rudd is on the University of Washington MBA board and currently serves as Vice President on the board for the Alopecia Support Group.
Rudd is the father of two daughters, a granddaughter and grandson. He spends most of his free time with his wife of 38 years and enjoys cycling, roller skating, and golfing.