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Darden Prepares for Leadership Transition

Eugene Lee will retire from his post as CEO of Darden Restaurants, effective May 29, 2022. At that time company veteran Rick Cardenas will assume the CEO role for Darden.

Cardenas presently serves as Darden’s president and chief operating officer, a position he assumed in January 2021. Previously, he served as Darden's chief financial officer since March 2016. Prior to that, Cardenas served as senior vice president and chief strategy officer. Cardenas began his career with Darden as an hourly team member in 1984, before joining the restaurant support center team in 1992.

Upon his retirement, Lee is expected to stand for re-election to the Darden Board of Directors and continue to serve in a non-executive capacity.