The Greater Kansas City Restaurant Association (GKCRA) was established in 1916, when three visionary restaurateurs, Myron Green, George Fowler, and Guy Taylor began meeting in the basement of Myron Green’s Cafeteria in Kansas City, MO. In 1917, the association organized a refrain from purchasing eggs to combat the rising cost from suppliers charging unfair prices. Their efforts received national attention and in 1919 the group launched the National Restaurant Association (NRA).
The NRA headquarters remained in Kansas City until 1927 when it moved to Chicago, and eventually to Washington, D.C. Since its Kansas City Founding, the National Restaurant Association has worked to ensure the legacy of creating opportunity for more than half of Americans who work in the restaurant industry during some point in their lives, where people can rise from entry level first jobs to managers, executives, and owners, and where organizations go for the philanthropic support that helps them do great work in local communities across the country. Today, the NRA supports the foodservice industry, which consists of 13.1 million employees (10% of the U.S. workforce) and generates $660.5 billion in annual sales (4% of the U.S. gross domestic product).
The GKCRA remains one of the strongest chapters of the NRA, serving the needs of the area’s hospitality industry in parts of Missouri and Kansas. Focused on education and community support, each year the GKCRA invests thousands of dollars into hospitality scholarships for area youth, as well as continuing the education of all hospitality employees.
Also dedicated to the financial well-being of Kansas City and the promotion of all businesses in our region, the GKCRA joined the city’s effort to initiate convention and tourism funding in 1974. Original construction and continued maintenance of Bartle Hall and other tourism and neighborhood development projects are solely funded by patrons of the restaurant and hotel industries.
2016 marks the centennial anniversary of the Greater Kansas City Restaurant Association.