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Chicago & Midwest  + Hospitality  | 

Obama Center Issues RFP for Restaurant Operators

The Obama Foundation has issued a request for proposals to operate a restaurant and grab-and-go cafe at the under-construction Obama Presidential Center in Jackson Park, reported Crain’s Chicago Business. The partner would also oversee catering at the Obama Center and programming of the fruit and vegetable garden and teaching kitchen. 

The foundation said it’s “looking to prioritize” diversity and create opportunities for small, locally owned businesses. Accordingly, smaller restaurant operators can work together to meet bidding requirements. The inspiration comes from airports, where bigger food operators partner with smaller, local restaurants, according to Crain’s. 

“We’re creating a dining experience that celebrates the role of food in our culture and communities,” Joshua Harris, the founder’s director of community engagement, told Crain’s. The restaurants are slated to open in 2025, when the center opens to the public. 


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About Paul Bubny

Paul Bubny serves as Senior Content Director for Connect Commercial Real Estate, a role to which he brings 13-plus years’ experience covering the commercial real estate industry and 30-plus years in business-to-business journalism. In this capacity, he oversees daily operations while also reporting on both local/regional markets and national trends, covering individual transactions across all property types, as well as delving into broader subject matter. He produces 15-20 daily news stories per day and works with the Connect team and clients to develop longer-form content, ranging from Q&As to thought-leadership pieces. Prior to joining Connect, Paul was Managing Editor for both Real Estate Forum and at American Lawyer Media, where he oversaw operations at both publications while also producing daily news and feature-length articles. His tenure in B2B publishing stretches back into the print era, and he has served as Editor in Chief on four national trade publications. Since 1999, Paul has volunteered as the newsletter editor of passenger rail advocacy groups (one national, one local).

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