Bloomin’ Brands announced the promotion of Pat Hafner to president of Carrabba’s Italian Grill. He will be responsible for leading the operations and development for approximately 220 Carrabba’s restaurants across the United States. Hafner started his career with the company in 1996 and spent 21 years with Outback Steakhouse before moving to Carrabba’s Italian Grill to serve as Vice President of Operations.

“Pat’s commitment to growth and development not only propelled his own career, but the success of the Carrabba’s brand and its expansion of off-premises, including catering” says David Deno, Chief Executive Officer of Bloomin’ Brands. “His strength in both leadership and results are invaluable.”

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Hafner’s restaurant career began with Outback Steakhouse as a server, advancing and excelling in each role including Manager, Managing Partner, Joint Venture Partner, and Regional Vice President, before joining Carrabba’s Italian Grill as Vice President of Operations in 2018.

He was recognized as Restaurateur of the Year by the New Mexico Restaurant Association in 2014 – the highest honor a restauranteur can achieve in New Mexico – for his contributions to the advancement of the restaurant industry. He was awarded “Outbacker of the Year” by Outback Steakhouse in 2015 for his positive impact on the brand throughout his career.

Hafner earned both his bachelor’s degree and MBA from the University of New Mexico.

Casual Dining, Chain Restaurants, Industry News, Carrabba’s Italian Grill