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Director of Catering and Special Events

As the Director of Catering and Special Events of The Rusty Pelican, Jennie Franco brings 13 years of experience and expertise in special events management, catering, and sales to the landmark Miami waterfront dining destination.

Jennie is a graduate of Miami-Dade Community College with a degree in business administration and holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Nova Southeastern University. From 2012 - 2017, she was Director of Sales & Events at Coral Gables Country Club, where she revamped and directed catering, special event and convention services, and helped increase sales from $400,000 to $4 million. Prior to that, from 2010 to 2012, she served as Director of Catering and Events for the Gansevoort Hotel on Miami Beach and held the same position at the Hilton in downtown Miami, from 2008–2010. Her first industry position, from 2004–2008, was Junior Catering Sales Manager at the Hilton Miami Airport Hotel, where she successfully completed the hotel’s management and development program.

Jennie is a perfect addition to the team at Rusty Pelican which received a $7 million renovation in 2011 and most recently introduced new upscale menu items, along with a curated wine program and craft cocktails. In her position, she will work with Executive Chef Jim Pastor to create menus for a variety of budgets, as well as oversee all special events, including weddings, private parties and business gatherings. She will also assist with branding and marketing the iconic restaurant and attend targeted wedding, wine, food and trade shows to stay on the cutting edge.