Clarence Otis, Jr., served as Chairman of the Board from November 2005 and Chief Executive Officer from November 2004 to October 14, 2014, of Darden Restaurants, Inc. The largest publicly traded casual dining restaurant company in the world, based on market share and revenues from company-owned restaurants. Darden Restaurants includes Red Lobster, Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, The Capital Grille, Bahama Breeze and Seasons 52.
He is one of only 15 Black American to serve in the CEO role of a "Fortune 500" listed company, the 500 largest companies in the United States.
Previously, Mr. Otis served as the Executive Vice President of Darden Restaurants, Inc., and President of its Smokey Bones Restaurants division, from December 2002 until December 2004. He served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Darden Restaurants from April 2002 to December 2002 and Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer from 1999 to 2002.
From 1991 to 1995, he was employed by Chemical Securities, Inc. (now J.P. Morgan Securities, Inc.), an investment banking firm, where he had been Managing Director and Manager of Public Finance.
Mr. Otis also serves as a director of Verizon Communications, Inc. He also served as a director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta from 2010 to 2015. He has served as a director of The Travelers Companies, Inc. since August 2017 and VF Corporation since 2004. He has also been a director of 138 funds within the MFS Mutual Funds complex since March 2017.
Mr. Otis is a graduate of Stanford Law School (1980), Williams College (1977), Stanford University.