TAMPA – On Monday, Jan. 29, The University of Tampa will welcome Richard Gonzmart, president of the Columbia Restaurant Group, as part of the TECO Energy Center for Leadership Speaker Series. The presentation, titled All in the Family … Success and Succession in a Fifth-Generation Restaurant Group, begins at 4:30 p.m. in the Trustees Board Room on the ninth floor of the Vaughn Center and is free and open to the public.
Gonzmart is the great-grandson of Casimiro Hernandez Sr., the founder of the world-famous Columbia Restaurant in Tampa’s historic Ybor City. Founded in 1905, the Columbia is the oldest restaurant in Florida, and the largest Spanish restaurant in the world.
Under Gonzmart’s direction, the Columbia has expanded from two locations to seven. He also created Cha Cha Coconuts in Sarasota. In August 2014, Gonzmart opened Ulele, located on the Hillsborough River. A second location opened at Tampa International Airport in 2017.
In August 2016, Gonzmart opened Goody Goody Burgers. A Tampa landmark since 1925 and closed since 2005, the iconic Goody Goody restaurant was reborn under his direction in Tampa’s Hyde Park Village.Gonzmart’s newest concept, Café con Leche Ybor City, also opened in 2017 at Tampa International Airport, serving coffee from Naviera Coffee Mills, Cuban toast and sandwiches.
The TECO Energy Center for Leadership Speaker Series is dedicated to bringing outstanding leaders from the private, government and nonprofit sectors to campus to discuss business topics and corporate strategies with students and members of the community.
The University of Tampa is located at 401 W. Kennedy Blvd. in Tampa. Please RSVP atwww.ut.edu/cfl/speakerseries. For more information, contact Whitney Vance, coordinator of College Business operations, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (813) 257-3782.
The University of Tampa is a private, residential university located on 110 acres on the riverfront in downtown Tampa. Known for academic excellence, personal attention and real-world experience in its undergraduate and graduate programs, the University serves approximately 9,000 students from 50 states and 140 countries. Approximately 62 percent of full-time students live on campus, and more than half of UT students are from Florida.