Lauded by the National Restaurant Association Education Foundation (NRAEF) as a mentor and philanthropist, Tempe restaurateur Raveen Arora is the recipient of the foundation's Face of Diversity-American Dream Award.
The award recognizes philanthropy, diversity and leadership, according to a press release. Arora is the owner of award-winning Punjabi Indian restaurant The Dhaba Indian Plaza. The establishment also features a marketplace.
Arora is a refugee from India who once worked with Mother Theresa. As an entrepreneur, he found success by meeting obstacles with sacrifice and helping others thrive in the food service industry. Throughout his career he has mentored over 120 employees to further their educations and build careers.
“I do my thing — one person at a time," Arora said in the press release. "I treat each hurdle as a bend in the road, but never the end of the road."
As the philanthropic foundation of the National Restaurant Association, the NRAEF has a mission to increase the restaurant industry's community influence through and increase in educational opportunities and career growth. The restaurant and food service industry reportedly accounted for 14.4 million jobs in 2016.
The award was presented at the Reagan Center in Washington, D.C.