Cane's CEO named Restaurateur of the Year

by Elizabeth Rose

Fresh, never frozen chicken fingers have earned Raising Cane's founder the title of Restaurateur of the Year.

Todd Graves, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers was recently named the 2012 Louisiana Restaurateur of the Year.

Graves, who also fills the roles of cashier and fry cook, is now among the ranks of Leah Chase, John Besh, John Folse and Paul Prudhomme, who have all been awarded the Restaurateur of the Year title. The Louisiana Restaurant Association presents the award to one who has "contributed unselfishly to the advancement of Louisiana's restaurant industry," according to a press release.

Cane's has more than 130 locations in 16 states. Since opening in 1996, Cane's is one of the country's fastest growing privately owned companies and hasĀ  appeared on Inc. Magazine's top-5,000 list of companies of the same criteria for five consecutive years. Graves has been recognized for his work in Nations Restaurant News, Chain Leader, QSR, Entrepreur, Rolling Stone and USA Today.

Because of Graves' philanthropy work, he will be the keynote speaker at the Community Foundation of Acadiana's Leaders in Philanthropy award luncheon on Nov. 1. Graves, with Cane's, has given more than 25 of its profits to the surrounding communities, focusing on education, food security, active lifestyles, canine assistance and business and entrepreneurial organizations.

For luncheon tickets, visit