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Brinker International's Charitable Partners Recognized

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and Susan G. Komen for the Cure ranked among nation's most trusted nonprofit brands
DALLAS, March 17, 2010 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Brinker International, Inc. (NYSE: EAT), parent company of Chili's(R) Grill & Bar, On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina(R) and Maggiano's Little Italy(R), congratulates two of its national charitable partners, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital(R) and Susan G. Komen for the Cure(R), for being ranked among the most trusted nonprofits in America. Make-A-Wish Foundation(R), a third Brinker charitable partner, was named to the Top 10 list of brands to which Americans are most likely to donate.

Each year, Brinker brands rally to raise funds and awareness for their selected national charitable partners. In September, as part of the Create-A-Pepper to Fight Childhood Cancer campaign, Chili's encourages guests to color the signature Chili's pepper for a donation of $1 or more to St. Jude. The brand also donates 100 percent of profits the last Monday of the month, all in part to reach Chili's 10-year, $50 million commitment to St. Jude.

Decked out in pink from floor to ceiling during its Fiesta for the Cure campaign, On The Border sponsors restaurant events and gathers donations throughout October to help raise funds for Susan G. Komen. Maggiano's touts chef-created dishes guests can purchase, with a portion of the proceeds going directly to its charitable partner Make-A-Wish, during the Eat-A-Dish for Make-A-Wish campaign each May.

In the recently released 2010 Harris Poll EquiTrend(R) survey conducted by Harris Interactive, St. Jude, one of the world's premier pediatric cancer research centers, located in Memphis, Tenn., was ranked as the most-trusted nonprofit brand. Susan G. Komen for the Cure, a global leader in the support of breast cancer research headquartered in Dallas, Texas, took second place in the survey. The two charities also ranked highest in the brand equity category, with Komen finishing first and St. Jude finishing second.

"As a valued partner in our Chili's Create-A-Pepper to Fight Childhood Cancer Campaign, St. Jude and its commitment to lifesaving work continue to inspire and motivate us. This national recognition demonstrates that St. Jude has a similar impact on the general public," said Kelli Valade, SVP and COO of Chili's Grill & Bar and On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina. "Susan G. Komen and Make-A-Wish included, we applaud all three of our national Brinker charitable partners and the great work they do."

Partnerships such as those with St. Jude, Susan G. Komen and Make-A-Wish stem from Brinker International's commitment--both at the corporate level and within each of its brands--to giving back to those who need support. Giving back to the communities where its employees live and work is one of Brinker International's core values, as reflected in its employee-established Brinker Family Fund (BFF). This fund, a 501(c)3 organization that provides support to team members and their families in times of need, is completely funded, managed and distributed by Brinker team members.

About Brinker International

Brinker International, Inc. (NYSE: EAT), is one of the world's leading casual dining restaurant companies, serving more than 1 million guests daily. Founded in 1975 and based in Dallas, Texas, Brinker owns or franchises more than 1,700 restaurants in 29 countries and two territories, and employs more than 125,000. Brinker restaurant brands include Chili's(R) Grill & Bar, On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina(R) and Maggiano's Little Italy(R). Brinker also holds a minority investment in Romano's Macaroni Grill(R). The company was named one of FORTUNE Magazine's Most Admired Food Service Companies in 2009 and was honored by the magazine as one of the Top 50 Employers for Minorities and the Top 50 Employers for Women. For more information, visit

SOURCE Brinker International, Inc.