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Lion’s Choice Donates Dunn Road Location to the Urban League for a Job Training Program

The iconic St. Louis restaurant brand donates Dunn Rd. building to become a facility to connect underserved youth to the restaurant industry

ST. LOUIS (June 14, 2019) Lion’s Choice and the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis announce today an exciting new beginning for the iconic St. Louis brand’s former restaurant at 3407 Dunn Road in north St. Louis County. Lion’s Choice has donated both the 0.95-acre site as well as the over 2,771 square foot restaurant.

In partnership with the Missouri Restaurant Association and Chancellor Jeff Pittman of St. Louis Community College, the Lion’s Choice restaurant will become a center for those interested in seeking gainful employment in the restaurant industry.

Lion’s Choice CEO Michael Kupstas says, “It is never an easy decision to close a store. We felt that it was imperative that the building and land go back to the community. Both team members and guests, are very important to us. Every employee at the Dunn Rd. location was placed at another Lion’s Choice location, but now, thanks to the Urban League, we know the building will serve a greater purpose for north St. Louis County neighborhoods.”

Michael McMillan, President and CEO of Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis explains how project came to life. “Our workforce development staff has been working with business owners to fill employment opportunities and noted that there are over 1,000 restaurant job openings in the St. Louis area every day. We felt that providing a community culinary training program could help fulfill this extreme demand for talent. Applicants could confidently enter the workforce with the necessary short-term training needed to obtain these jobs. We are especially thankful to Lion’s Choice for giving us the opportunity to help those in need find viable employment.” 

Robert Millstone, Managing Partner of Millstone Capital Advisors, Lion’s Choice’s parent company, helped establish the relationship with Urban League of Metro St. Louis. Millstone and his family have a long history of supporting social justice and equality efforts in St. Louis – to provide a better quality of life for everyone.

He explains, “The Urban League is one of the leading and longest serving organizations that advances social justice through creating economic opportunities for people in poverty in our community. We are excited that they are able to use the restaurant to serve the community in a way that was initially beyond our imagination. It’s a small way to say thank you for allowing us to be a part of the community, and we hope Lion’s Choice will be involved the training program in St. Louis.”

More than 5 million people between the ages of 16 and 24 are neither enrolled in school nor working today in the U.S. — and recent studies show that more than 75 percent of these disconnected young people, known as “opportunity youth,” seek gainful employment to improve their quality of life. The program empowers community organizations like the Urban League, St. Louis Community College, and even restaurant partners like Lion’s Choice to work with the youth and provide opportunities for employment in the restaurant industry.

About Lion’s Choice: Founded in 1967, Lion’s Choice has become an iconic St. Louis restaurant brand. Now with almost 30 locations, Lion’s Choice is known for their famous roast beef sandwiches, crave-worthy fries and frozen custard. The real beef is slow-roasted fresh every day for over three hours, made to order, and sliced thin with a dash of seasoning on a buttered and toasted bun. The signature sandwich is made with 100% lean beef – high quality, top round of beef. Lion’s Choice is dedicated to the highest-quality ingredients, an elevated quick-serve experience, and honest-to-goodness awesome food. The over 50-year legacy continues today due to the care of the LC team. Guests have a unique ability to customize their order at Lion’s Choice from the rareness of the beef to the bun. Lion’s Choice has locations throughout Missouri as well as Western Illinois and Kansas City areas. For the most up-to-date information, visit www.lionschoice.com or share your Lion’s Choice roar on social media at Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @lionschoice.

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