LOS ANGELES, CA – November 1, 2021 – InStride, the premier global provider of Strategic Enterprise Education™ programs, announced the addition of former Darden Restaurants CEO Clarence Otis to the InStride Advisory Board (IAB). Otis becomes the ninth member of the IAB, joining leaders from Cardinal Health, Citibank, Disney, eBay, Ford, KPMG, Michael’s and Regal Entertainment.
“We are thrilled to have someone of Clarence Otis’ talent and passion join our InStride Advisory Board,” said Vivek Sharma, CEO and Co-Founder of InStride. “His work as a business leader and dedicated humanitarian will truly complement the other advisors who have championed InStride’s mission of providing strategic workforce education.”
Under Otis’ leadership, the number of restaurants within the Darden portfolio grew from 1,381 to more than 2,200. He began his career with Darden Restaurants as Treasurer, and Senior Vice President of Finance, then Chief Financial Officer, and finally President of Smokey Bones BBQ, one of the company’s restaurant concepts, before being named Chief Executive Officer in 2004. In his 10 years as CEO, Darden’s total shareholder return was 133%. Otis also served as a director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta from 2010 to 2015, and was a director of 138 funds within the MFS Mutual Funds.
Otis continues his business and community activities through several boards including serving as a director of The Travelers Companies, Inc., a director of VF Corporation and as lead director at Verizon Communications. He is also a member of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America board of governors, and last year became the board chair for Jazz at Lincoln Center. He and his wife, Jacqueline Bradley, are dedicated collectors of works by African American and other African Diaspora artists.
InStride Advisory Board Members as of November 3, 2021 include:
- George S. Barrett, former Chair and CEO of Cardinal Health, Inc.
- Barbara J. Desoer, former CEO of Citibank, N.A.
- Lynne Doughtie, former U.S. Chair and CEO of KPMG
- Mark Fields, Interim CEO of Hertz and former President and CEO of Ford Motor Company
- Amy E. Miles, former Chair and CEO of Regal Entertainment Group
- Clarence Otis, former CEO of Darden Restaurants
- Chuck Rubin, former CEO of The Michaels Companies, Inc.
- Thomas O. Staggs, former COO of The Walt Disney Company
- Meg Whitman, former CEO of eBay, Hewlett-Packard and HPE