Episode 18: Has COVID-19 changed restaurants forever?
New Orleans restaurants are facing an existential threat. The pandemic has drastically reduced the number of visitors to the city and locals are dining out less frequently. It’s unclear when health restrictions will ease and life can return to normal. In this week’s podcast, we talk with Jennifer Weishaupt, the founder and CEO of the Ruby Slipper Restaurant Group, about how COVID-19 may change restaurants forever – and how she’s managed to keep her business moving forward despite all the challenges.
A chemical engineer, Jennifer “retired” from Shell Oil Company in 2015 with 16 years of service, most recently as operations manager for three oil and gas production platforms in the Gulf of Mexico. As founder and CEO of Ruby Slipper Restaurant Group, Jennifer oversees all aspects of restaurant operations and future growth for what has grown from a single neighborhood café in 2008 into an award-winning, 18-unit restaurant group spanning five states and two sister brands (Ruby Slipper Café and Ruby Sunshine). Jennifer stays engaged in her community where she recently completed a term of service on the board of directors of Liberty’s Kitchen and previously served on the board of directors of Morris Jeff Community School. She and her husband, Ruby Slipper co-founder Erich Weishaupt, have been married for 19 years and have three amazing school-aged children who keep her on her toes.