Media Contact:
Erica P. Burns
Director of Communications
Louisiana Restaurant Association
2700 N. Arnoult Road
Metairie, LA 70002
(504) 636-6516 Direct Line
(504) 454-2277 Office
(504) 454-2299 Fax

Metairie, LA-The Louisiana Restaurant Association Education Foundation (LRAEF) is pleased to announce the selection of Alison Greffenius as its executive director.

Greffenius brings 12 years of experience in nonprofit fundraising, management and marketing experience to her position, having securing thousands of dollars in grants, helping to raise millions of dollars in capital campaigns and stewarding planned giving programs for organizations in Louisiana. She began her career in capital campaigns with the West St. Tammany YMCA and most recently, she was the director of fund development at St. Scholastica Academy in Covington, La.

As LRAEF executive director, Greffenius will oversee the operations of the Foundation, including its scholarship program and culinary and management education program, ProStart®.

ProStart is a nationwide, two-year program for high school students that develops the best and brightest talent into tomorrow's industry leaders. From culinary techniques to management skills, ProStart's industry-driven curriculum provides real-world educational opportunities and builds practical skills and a foundation that will last a lifetime.

"In seeking an executive director, our goal was to find someone with experience in educational philanthropy and an understanding of the academic curriculum environment," said LRA President & CEO Stan Harris. "Alison's background at Christ Episcopal School and St. Scholastica should provide a solid foundation for her new role with the LRAEF. Working with our board, staff and other stakeholders, we look forward to Alison's leadership as we set our course for the future."

Greffenius received a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from Loyola University and a Master's degree from the University of New Orleans.

"I'm so thrilled to join such a professional organization as the LRA Education Foundation, which provides so much to one of our state's most vital economic sectors and helps ensure the future vitality of the restaurant industry by educating young people in restaurant management and the culinary arts," said Greffenius.

2016 LRAEF Annual Partners: Five Diamond- Acme Oyster House, Auto-Chlor Services, Emeril Lagasse Foundation, Louisiana Hospitality Foundation, Louisiana Restaurant Association, National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation and Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers; Four Diamond- Performance Foodservice- Caro; Three Diamond- Atmos Energy, Ben E. Keith, Delaware North, Ecolab, Louisiana Culinary Institute and New Orleans Wine & Food Experience; Two Diamond- Besh Restaurant Group and Whole Foods Market and One Diamond- Capitol City Produce/Mickey Freiberg and Mele Printing. The LRAEF would also like to thank the nine chapters of the LRA for their support throughout the year.


ProStart is a registered trademark of the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation.

ProStart is a two-year, culinary management program for high school juniors and seniors with a curriculum designed to teach students culinary techniques as well as restaurant management skills. ProStart is in 70 high schools statewide and more than 2,000 students participate in the program.  

The Louisiana Restaurant Association Education Foundation exists to enhance the industry's service to the public through education, community engagement and promotion of career opportunities.

The Louisiana Restaurant Association is one of the largest business organizations in the state, representing restaurant operations and related businesses. The restaurant industry in Louisiana is one the state's largest private employers, providing jobs to more than 204,000 residents. Restaurants in Louisiana are expected to generate sales of $8.7 billion in 2016. Get up-to-date news about the LRA and the restaurant industry from