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Business Person of the Year

Born in Washington, D.C. in 1956, Robert Easby-Smith is a sixth generation Washingtonian.  He left the area for four years while attending the University of Notre Dame, where he received a Bachelor's Degree in Accounting in 1978.  Following his graduation, Mr. Easby-Smith started his career with Chesapeake Restaurant Group in the Washington D. C. area.  The company owned and operated several restaurant concepts in Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia to include Chesapeake Bay Seafood House, Chili’s Grill & Bar, On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina, The Spaghetti Market, and Easby’s Buffet.  The company currently operates twenty-four Chili’s Grill & Bar restaurants.  Over the years, Mr. Easby-Smith has served the company in many different roles, starting as the Assistant Controller, then becoming the Director of Human Resources, Director of Operations, and now is the Chief Executive Officer of the organization.

In addition to his professional career, Mr. Easby-Smith has played an active role in the community.  He served on the Holy Redeemer School Board, coached youth basketball and soccer, was Athletic Director for Holy Redeemer Parish from 1991 to 1997, and was on the Board of Directors for the Catholic Youth Organization of the Archdiocese of Washington for six years, where he served as Treasurer.

Mr. Easby-Smith has served on the Board of Directors for Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington.  In addition to his work with Catholic Charities, Mr. Easby-Smith was on the Board of Directors of Catholic Cemeteries of the Archdiocese of Washington where he served as Chairman for two years.  He also served on the Board of Directors of SHARE-DC, Johns Hopkins’ Suburban Hospital Foundation Board and was Treasurer of the Order of Malta Federal Association.  Mr Easby-Smith also severed as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Don Bosco Cristo Rey High School from 2012-2016 and was President of Columbia Country Club from 2018-2020.

Mr. Easby-Smith and his wife Anne Matan Easby-Smith have four children, and eleven grandchildren who live in the Washington DC metropolitan area.