Susan Frasca, President, CEO and Sole Proprietor, Frasca Hospitality Group, Chicago, IL

Susan Frasca, President, CEO and Sole Proprietor, Frasca Hospitality Group, Chicago, IL

Age: 37. Why she's rising: Bought four flagship restaurants from Restaurant Development Group to form Chicago's largest woman-owned restaurant organization. Concentrated within a three-block radius, the restaurants (Club Creole, Kinzie Chophouse, Mambo Grill and the new Mio Mezzo/ Kinzie Market operation) generated more than $8 million in revenues last year. Ladder climbing: This one-time commodities trader spent time as an executive v.p. for a real estate firm before becoming a partner in and chief operating officer of Restaurant Development Group, from whom she bought four concepts. Schooling: Purdue University. First job in foodservice: Hostess, Odyssey Restaurant, Merrillville, Indiana. Mentor: Chicago real estate developer Leonard Richman. Wins praise for : Her quick study of what spells success in the restaurant industry. The Frasca Group's restaurants suit a wide range of tastes, and are situated in Chicago's River North area, which is fed by daytime Merchandise Mart traffic, an evening influx of tourists, plus the area's ongoing residential boom. What the future holds: Is taking a look at potential sites in Chicago's South Loop area, "but if we expand, we'd be looking to do so with one of our five existing concepts, instead of taking on any new ones."