John Rivers


John Rivers has quickly become not only one of the nation’s top restauranteurs but an entrepreneurial legend.

For years, he dreamed of opening a Texas-style barbecue restaurant. In 2004, he took a leap, launching what was basically a barbecue ministry out of his garage to help a local family pay off medical bills from their daughter’s battle with cancer. 

What has happened since is nothing short of remarkable. He’s now opened his sixth 4 Rivers Smokehouse, with more expansion on the way. He’s also launching a new concept in Southern comfort food called The Coop.

He explains the restaurant’s humble beginnings and why its sudden and meteoric popularity took them all by surprise. 

John also shares the story about Dan Cathy of Chick-fil-A calling to offer his assistance and support during a period when John was considering leaving the restaurant and returning to the health-care industry because he and his wife were quickly running out of their money, which had been keeping the restaurant afloat.