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Beloved Mahwah Restaurateur Named Chairman Of NJ Association

Craig Kunisch and wife Denise.
Craig Kunisch and wife Denise. Photo Credit: Craig Kunisch

Craig Kunisch of Mahwah has been named the 2018-2019 Chairman of the New Jersey Restaurant & Hospitality Association (NJRHA).

Kunisch, along with his siblings, continue the tradition of hospitality started when their great-grandmother opened the Allendale Bar & Grill in 1935. The three opened the family's second location, the Mahwah Bar & Grill in 1992.

Community members rallied around Kunisch and his family in November 2016 after their house burned down in a fire.

“As a board member, Craig’s been very involved and acutely aware of the Association’s legislative challenges these past few years,” said Marilou Halvorsen, president of the New Jersey Restaurant & Hospitality Association.

"I can’t think of anyone more qualified to help us navigate these rough waters and lead the charge in growing our membership while educating the public on the importance of protecting their local, family-owned businesses that support their communities."

Kunisch -- a fourth-generation restaurant owner and operator -- proudly begins his new position immediately, taking the helm from fellow NJRHA board member and friend, Jeanne Cretella of Landmark Hospitality.

He plans to continue many of Cretella’s initiatives centered on industry and legislative education while placing an added effort on increasing membership.

“We need to grow the Association, which will allow more operators the opportunity to take advantage of all that we offer. We are their one-stop shop for what they need to know as owners and operators regarding both compliance and impactful legislation. We’re a resource in so many regards, and more restaurants should be taking advantage of what we offer,” said Kunisch.

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