Raising Cane’s: Is gearing up for opening

Greater Washington: The Baton Rouge, Louisiana restaurant chain plans to open its first new restaurant in the D.C. area in March. Raising Cane’s, and other restaurants to be opened in the new Perrysburg development

A development called French Quarter Square is currently under construction in Perrysburg Township. It will house several restaurants, including one by Raising Cane’s.

Raising Cane’s is thrilled to bring its ONE Love — quality chicken fingers — into the Toledo area in the late 2022,” a spokesperson for the Louisiana-based fried chicken chain stated. He added that a formal announcement with additional details was yet to be made.

This New Orleans-style shopping mall is located at 10630 Fremont Pike just east of I-75 interchange. It’s in the middle of a bustling shopping corridor.

Todd Graves, Founder, CEO, Fry Cook and Cashier

It started as a college dream: a restaurant that only served chicken fingers and no other food. Todd’s vision was the inspiration for his business plan, which ironically earned him the lowest grade of the class. According to the professor, a restaurant that serves only chicken fingers from South Louisiana would not work.

Unfazed, the young entrepreneur presented his plan for business to any banker who would listen. Todd was met with the same rejection each time. Todd knew he would have to raise his own capital so he went to California to become a boilermaker in an oil refining plant. He then moved on to Alaska to be involved in the dangerous business of salmon fishing. Todd rebuilt an old Baton Rouge building and named it Raising Cane’s after his yellow lab, Raising Cane.

Recognition & Awards

  • Glassdoor ranks #28 among the Top 100 CEOs in America by Glassdoor
  • Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Award of the Year
  • SCORE Award for Outstanding Socially Progressive Business
  • Louisiana Restaurant Association’s Restaurateur-of-the Year
  • Louisianan of The Year by Louisiana Life

Television Shows

Todd appeared on Animal Planet’s Treehouse Masters and Discovery’s Fast N’ Loud. He was also on Food Network’s Food Court Wars.


Todd created Restaurant Recovery, a documentary-series about the devastating effects of the pandemic upon the restaurant industry. Discovery +’s series features Graves traveling to 10 restaurants in the county to assist them with the challenges of running a restaurant during a pandemic.


Gwen Graves and Todd appeared on Secret Millionaire, a FOX program that featured South Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana in 2008. Gwen and Todd donated almost $400,000 to several community organizations in the area that was devastated by Hurricane Katrina 2005. They also established the Cane’s Plaquemine Parish Relief Fund.

Raising Cane’s

Raising Cane’s(r), a chicken tenderloin eatery, is known for its One Love(r), premium tenderloin dishes. Raising Cane’s only uses the highest quality ingredients and is freshly prepared and cooked to your order. This ensures a delicious chicken tenderloin dish that’s hot and fresh every single time.

In 1996, the first Raising Cane’s restaurant opened in Baton Rouge (Las Vegas), just outside of Louisiana State University. Todd Graves was a college student who had the dream of opening a restaurant that specialized in chicken fingers. Graves, who wrote the business plan for the restaurant, received the lowest grade in class. He was refused money by the banks. To raise his own funds, he became a boilermaker and worked 90-hour work weeks at a Los Angeles refinery. He then fished for Sockeye Salmon in Alaska commercially, working 20 hours a day in hazardous conditions.

He finally had enough money saved up so he went home to Baton Rouge in Louisiana. Graves bought an old building close to Louisiana State University and made it his own. In 1996, “The Mothership”, was the first Raising Cane’s (r), restaurant to open. Raising Cane’s has more than 500 restaurants across the United States thanks to all those who believed in its vision. Raising Cane’s(r), opened its first Middle East restaurant at The Mall – The Avenues, Kuwait in September 2015.

The Unusual Origin of Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers

What was the origin of chicken fingers? These chicken fingers sound like another metaphor for something very unlikely, similar to frog hair and hen’s teeth. Leite’s Culinaria dated them back to the 1990s, which were also the height of the nugget, and tender, other pieces now attributed to galline biology. According to The New York Times, another anatomical impossibility would soon follow in the early 2000s: the “boneless wings”.

Whatever the inspiration behind the chicken fingers, it was impossible to imagine a restaurant dedicated to this dish. Todd Graves is Raising Cane’s founder, CEO and chief executive officer. His bio also mentions him as a fry cook and cashier, which is something he did in the early days of the company. He has a great story to tell about how he refused to quit trying to make the restaurant of his dreams come true, no matter what people said.

How Graves started in the chicken finger industry

A professor at Louisiana State University’s college business class was the first to naysayer. Because the instructor believed that an all-chicken finger business plan was absurd, he gave him the lowest grade. Graves persevered and tried to get a loan from a bank to fund his business. However, the loan officers weren’t as optimistic as his professor. He decided to raise funds by doing hard work. He worked for 90 hours at the L.A. refinery, first as a boilermaker. But, this wasn’t dangerous nor difficult enough for Graves. He soon set off for Alaska to fish 20 hours per day for sockeye salmon.