Famous Dave's

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Famous Dave's of America, Inc.
Type Public
Industry Restaurants
Founded Hayward, Wisconsin, United States (1994 (1994))
Headquarters Minnetonka, Minnesota, United States
Number of locations 200
Key people John F. Gilbert III, CEO
Diana Purcell, CFO
Products Barbecue ribs, beef brisket, chicken, burgers, soups, salads, desserts
Website www.famousdaves.com
References: [1][2]
Exterior of a Famous Dave's in Frederick, Maryland

Famous Dave's of America is a chain of barbecue restaurants serving pork ribs, chicken, beef brisket, and several flavors of barbecue sauce. Dave Anderson, an Ojibwe who served as the head of the federal Bureau of Indian Affairs from 2004 to 2005, started the first Famous Dave's restaurant near Hayward, Wisconsin in 1994. The restaurant chain grew throughout the Midwestern United States, including Puerto Rico in 2014. It has 200 locations in 34 U.S. states and one Canadian province, as of December 2012.[2] The first restaurant of the chain was Famous Dave's Bar-B-Que in Hayward, Wisconsin.

Dave Anderson[edit]

Famous Dave's catering truck, Westland, Michigan

Dave Anderson helped many struggling businesses back onto their feet before starting Famous Dave’s in 1994.[citation needed] In 1982, Dave put together a team responsible for turning around the Lac Courte Oreilles Chippewa Reservation's economy as part of an effort to improve Indian reservations' struggling economies. For the next couple of years, Dave took part in councils and teams looking to improve Wisconsin’s tourism and small businesses.

In 1986, Dave earned a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Harvard University, without earning an undergraduate degree.[3]

In 1994, Dave helped found Rainforest Café, a theme restaurant chain, and in October 1994, Dave Anderson opened the first Famous Dave’s in Hayward, Wisconsin.[4]


  1. ^ "NASDAQ Opening Bell Ceremony | Famous Dave's". Famous Dave's of America. Retrieved 21 December 2012. 
  2. ^ a b "Famous Dave’s Locations". Famous Dave's of America. Retrieved 21 December 2012. 
  3. ^ "About Dave Anderson". Famous Dave Anderson. Retrieved 21 December 2012. 
  4. ^ "The Legend of Famous Dave's". Famous Dave's of America. Retrieved 21 December 2012. 

External links[edit]