May 14, 2018
Newsmakers

Scott Dolch | Executive Director, Connecticut Restaurant Association

Scott Dolch

The Connecticut Restaurant Association has a new signal caller in Scott Dolch, its executive director, who's transitioning from a career in sports-related roles to representing an industry with 7,000-plus restaurants and nearly 155,000 employees.

That's a big team for Dolch, who was starting quarterback at Central Connecticut State University and helped lead CCSU to its first Northeast Conference championship in 2004, his senior season before tackling jobs that would help prepare him to QB the Restaurant Association. They included jobs at universities building organizations and brands, including helping UMass Lowell transition from Division II to Division I and University of Hartford launch a new athletics brand identity to promote its 17 Division I sports. He was Travelers Championship's marketing and media manager from 2009-12.

Football taught Dolch life lessons, including how to become a leader, deal with adversity and work as a team. On his Restaurant Association team, he's responsible for promoting, protecting and improving Connecticut's restaurant and hospitality industry.

What inspired moving to the food industry?

The chance to make a significant impact. This job gives me a chance to build a brand, increase the impact our members have on the state and develop new opportunities for future employees.

What do you most hope to accomplish as CRA director?

Expand the association's reach, increase services to members and provide more opportunities for those looking to enter this industry. Building CRA's brand will hopefully increase memberships and partnerships, while increasing our impact with elected officials.

What's the biggest challenge and/or opportunity you face in your new role?

Relationship-building is one of my strengths and I'm working hard to meet restaurant owners and operators who are past, present and/or future members. Taking time to meet people in the industry will help me succeed and help us achieve CRA's goals.

What issue are restaurateurs most concerned about in Connecticut?

The direction of the state Capitol, as some recent legislative mandates have made it difficult on small businesses. I must advocate to legislators each day that restaurant and hospitality industry growth will benefit everyone in Connecticut.

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