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October 28, 2019

Workplace Legacy Award to Honor Two Restaurant Industry Leaders

Dina Birmasse and David Gordon of Cheesecake Factory accepting the Diamond Catalyst Award at the 2013 Global Best Practices Conference by Black Box Intelligence (formerly TDn2K)

Dina Barmasse and David Gordon of Cheesecake Factory accept the Diamond Catalyst Award at the 2013 Global Best Practices Conference. Pictured with Joni and Wally Doolin.

The coveted Workplace Legacy Award will celebrate two outstanding leaders in the foodservice industry. The Workplace Legacy Award is the pinnacle of recognition for leadership in the hospitality space. 

The winners of this prestigious honor are David Gordon, president and Dina Barmasse, SVP of human resources from The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated. They will be presented with the award and celebrated at the Global Best Practices Conference in January 2020 in Dallas, Texas.

“It is such an honor to be recognized with this award,” said David Gordon. “I have spent the last twenty-five years of my career working alongside our founder and CEO, David Overton, to develop our leaders within the company while focusing on operational excellence, delicious memorable food and gracious hospitality. This award is a wonderful acknowledgment of our team’s continued success.” 


“We are honored to receive this special award,” said Dina Barmasse. “The Cheesecake Factory has been recognized as a great place to work in large part because of our more than 40,000 staff members and managers who have helped create our special culture. It is a true honor to accept this award which recognizes our shared purpose of nurturing bodies, minds, hearts and spirits.”

This award recognizes success in balancing superior people practices and best-in-class operational results. In addition, their employees, organizations and communities have benefited from their leadership and efforts.

“Every year, they find a way to raise the bar at The Cheesecake Factory and set the standard for so many other brands in the process. Because of their clear and visible partnership, it is key to recognize both Dina and David with this award,” said Joni Thomas Doolin, founder and chair of Black Box Intelligence (formerly TDn2K).

David and Dina have fostered a culture that has resulted in The Cheesecake Factory being a Best Place to Work – for almost two decades. It is a unique and remarkable example of leadership that we are delighted to honor.

Kelli Valade

President and CEO, Black Box Intelligence (formerly TDn2K)

The Workplace Legacy Award was given for the first time in 2005 and has honored incredible industry leaders such as Doug Brooks, chairman and CEO of Brinker International, Gene Lee, president and CEO of Darden Restaurants, John Miller, president and CEO of Denny’s Restaurants, Sally Smith, president and CEO of Buffalo Wild Wings and Danny Meyer, founder and CEO of Union Square Hospitality Group. These leaders clearly demonstrate a commitment to leading people-first cultures that also win in the marketplace.

The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated has won multiple Global Best Practices awards, including the 2013 inaugural Diamond Catalyst award. Barmasse and Gordon chaired the Global Best Practices Conference in 2017. The award will be presented on Thursday afternoon, January 30th, 2020, followed by a celebratory cocktail reception.

About Black Box Intelligence (formerly TDn2K)

Black Box Intelligence (formerly TDn2K) is the leading insights & knowledge provider of restaurant industry human resources, financial performance and consumer insights data through their products Workforce Intelligence (formerly People Report), Financial Intelligence (formerly Black Box Intelligence), Guest Intelligence (formerly Guest Intelligence (formerly White Box Social Intelligence))™ & Consumer Intelligence. Black Box Intelligence (formerly TDn2K) allows organizations to leverage benchmarked data to achieve best-in-class performance results. Black Box Intelligence (formerly TDn2K) currently tracks, analyzes and benchmarks the largest database of real restaurant data in the US that includes over 300 companies, over 2.8 million employees and $72 billion in annual revenue. More at

About the Global Best Practices Conference

This event is a gathering of hundreds of restaurant industry senior leadership brought together to tackle some of the most challenging obstacles facing the restaurant industry. The event is also the home of the Best Practice Awards, Diamond Catalyst Award, Heart of the Workplace Award and the Workplace Legacy Award presentations. Dates for the 2020 Global Best Practices Conference are January 28 – 30th at the Westin in Irving, Texas. More at

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