Robert Dunning spent 21 years serving his country in the United States Marine Corp. before turning his attention to serve the New Orleans community slow-smoked, Texas-style barbecue.

Before switching his focus to authentic, Texas-style barbecue, Robert spent over two decades as a U.S. Marine. During his service, he was stationed in Japan, Europe, Asia and Australia as well as here in the United States. His last assignment before retiring from service was New Orleans and is what inspired him to become a restaurateur.

“New Orleanians have a real passion for delicious food,” says Robert. “I take great pride in serving them the very best barbecue there is.”

Dunning owns three Dickey’s Barbecue Pits in the New Orleans area and is actively engaged in his community, hosting fundraising nights for local high school bands and donating catering to local churches and non-profits. “I donated a Christmas dinner for 70 people to a nearby church,” he says. “They’re now one of my regular customers.”

“Robert is not only a wonderful part of the Dickey’s family but an integral part of the New Orleans community,” says Laura Rea Dickey, CEO of Dickey’s Barbecue Restaurants, Inc. “His passion for barbecue and people will ensure his continued success for years to come.”

The former serviceman opened his first location in April 2014 and says, “I’d advise anyone looking to get into a franchise business to pace themselves. Start with one location and don’t expand until you’ve got a good formula down for ensuring you’re operating efficiently and profitably.”

Franchising, News, Dickey's Barbecue Pit