We’ll miss you, Doug!

March 10, 2020

At Portillo’s, our guests are at the center of everything we do. We strive to deliver our cravable menu in a fun and energetic environment, creating a one-of-a-kind experience that delights each and every guest.

In fact, pleasing guests has been a part of Portillo’s DNA throughout our 50-plus-year history, which has allowed us to develop relationships with many of our long-time guests. So, it’s with heavy hearts that we bid farewell to our friend, Doug Cohen.

Mr. Cohen first visited Portillo’s twenty years ago, and as he told us of his first experience, “I was hooked for life.” But he wasn’t satisfied with just being able to go to Portillo’s while traveling; he wanted one in his hometown of Rockford, Ill. First, he began suggesting that we build in Rockford. Then he elevated his desire for a local Portillo’s, soliciting the help of friends and neighbors with a petition launched in 2010. Five years later, that petition paid off.

Now, there’s a booth dedicated to Mr. Cohen and his persistent efforts in the Rockford restaurant, crediting him with bringing Portillo’s to the city.  

“Part of our purpose at Portillo’s is to create lifelong memories,” says CEO Michael Osanloo. “People are the heart of Portillo’s, and family is one of our main values. We consider Doug a part of our Portillo’s family. He’ll be missed by all of us.”

Also known for being a Rockford historian, Mr. Cohen was well known by many local businesses. His passing the first week of March saddened the community. The Portillo’s team will continue to look fondly on our memories with Mr. Cohen—including this Q&A about his efforts in Rockford—and we’ll think of him and his love for our brand every time we see that booth. 



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