Smokey Bones’ Top HR Executive Rachael Kelly Named 2022 Woman of the Year by Florida Diversity Council

Rachael Kelly
Rachael Kelly

Awards ceremony part of Annual Women in Leadership Symposiums

Smokey Bones' Top HR Executive Rachael Kelly Named 2022 Woman of the Year by Florida Diversity CouncilPlantation, FL  (RestaurantNews.comSmokey Bones, based in Plantation, Fla., announced this week its top HR Executive, Rachael Kelly, Chief People and Culture Officer, was named 2022 Woman of the Year for South Florida by the Florida Diversity Council. Kelly was awarded the honor at the annual South Florida Women in Leadership Symposium on March 9 via Zoom. The symposium and the awards ceremony also fell during Women’s History Month.

Kelly is recognized for her leadership of the 61-unit in 16 states, award-winning casual dining brand. Amid the devastating effect of the pandemic on the restaurant industry, Kelly facilitated a cultural rebirth of resilience and inclusion founded on a principle of human-centric leadership. She has fostered the promotion of numerous women, LGBTQ+ and POC, into higher-level roles. She earned Smokey Bones “Great Place to Work” certifications for two consecutive years and was also recently named as a US Top 50 HR professional by OnCon and one of Nation’s Restaurant News’ most influential restaurant executives in the country.

“Rachael is an invaluable member of our leadership team, and I’m so pleased she is receiving this recognition by others,” said CEO James O’Reilly. “Rachael has helmed a cultural renaissance at Smokey Bones, which led to our multi-year certifications as a Great Place to Work. We are very grateful for her leadership and contributions.”

In addition to her professional work, Kelly founded a non-profit organization supporting abuse survivors in their journey to empowerment.

The Florida Diversity Council hosts its annual Women in Leadership Symposiums throughout March. This event brings together a diverse mix of successful women leaders who, by discussing topics that pertain to today’s workforce, will educate, inspire, and encourage attendees to reflect on their own goals and status as they strive to advance within their organizations.

About Smokey Bones

The Masters of Meat Smokey Bones is a full-service restaurant delivering great barbecue, award winning ribs, and good times in 61 locations across 16 states.  Smokey Bones serves lunch, dinner, and late night, and has a full bar featuring a variety of bourbons and whiskeys, a selection of domestic, import and local craft beers, and signature, handcrafted cocktails.  We offer a variety of meats that are slow-smoked, fire-grilled, and available for dine-in, pick-up, online ordering, catering, and delivery. Smokey Bones offers a 10% discount to active duty and veterans with ID.   Smokey Bones is an affiliate of Boca Raton, FL based Sun Capital Partners. For additional information and a list of locations nationwide, please visit  Smokey Bones, Meat is What We Do!

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About the Florida Diversity Council

A non-profit organization committed to fostering a learning environment for organizations to grow in their knowledge of diversity. The council affords opportunities for organizations to share best practices and learn from top corporate leaders in the areas of diversity and inclusion. Regional advisory boards are located in Jacksonville, Orlando, Tampa, and South Florida. For more information about the Florida Diversity Council visit

Brianne Barbakoff
Ink Link Marketing