The California Restaurant Association Foundation (CRAF) has named Michaela Mendelsohn as one of the two state winners of the 2018 Faces of Diversity Award, CRAF announced today. The winners will be recognized at the California Restaurant Association’s Restaurant Day at the Capitol on April 24.
Mendelsohn, the Owner and President/CEO of Pollo West Corp, has received national attention for her exhaustive efforts to make workplaces inclusive to transgender employees. Mendelsohn, who has come out as a transgender woman, began her first restaurant job at the age of 16, washing dishes. She later operated coin-op and vending machines before going back to her restaurant roots to pursue a career as an El Pollo Loco franchisee.