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Executive Movements - January 2020

Bojangles’® Names QSR Vet Robert Garcia Vice President of Franchise Operations, Training and Development

January 16, 2020 10:00 AM Eastern Standard Time

CHARLOTTE, N.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Bojangles’, Inc. today announced that industry veteran Robert Garcia has been promoted to Vice President of Franchise Operations, Training and Development. Garcia will take over responsibility for all Franchise support operations at the growing iconic Southern restaurant franchisor. Additionally, in this new role, he will continue to lead the company’s high priority Training and Development initiatives, and report to Chief Operating Officer, Brian Unger.

“Robert is an enthusiastic and very talented leader that we are lucky to have as part of our organization, and I am very excited for him to take on this key role supporting our franchise partners,” said Unger. “He has decades of experience leading dynamic results-oriented teams and we look forward to him making an immediate impact on franchise operations.”

Robert joined Bojangles’ in 2019 to lead key national operations initiatives. He has a very diverse professional background that includes assignments in Europe and Latin America. His career began in the Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) industry at age 14 when he joined Burger King as a crew member. After 21 years of service with Burger King and graduating from the University of Miami with a master’s degree in Business, Robert began working for McDonald’s Corporation. While with McDonald’s he served in various roles of increased responsibility, including Vice President of U.S. Operations, and most recently, Vice President, East Division Company Owned Restaurants.

“I am very excited to take on this expanded role with a brand that I have come to appreciate and respect so much,” said Garcia. “We are one big family at Bojangles’ and our franchise partners are very important to us. We are committed to working harder than ever to help them be successful.”

About Bojangles’, Inc.

Bojangles’, Inc. is a highly differentiated and growing restaurant operator and franchisor dedicated to serving customers high-quality, craveable food made from our Southern recipes, including breakfast served All Day, Every Day. Founded in 1977 in Charlotte, N.C., Bojangles’® serves menu items such as made-from-scratch biscuit breakfast sandwiches, delicious hand-breaded bone-in chicken, flavorful fixin’s (sides) and Legendary Iced Tea®. For more information, visit or follow Bojangles’ on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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Paris Baguette Appoints Darren Tipton CEO of U.S. Business

JANUARY 14, 2020

Paris Baguette announced new appointments to its executive leadership team to support its mission of developing an inclusive, global, and entrepreneurial culture while positioning for long-term growth.

As of January 1, former Chief Operating Officer (COO), Darren Tipton, assumed the role of CEO of Paris Baguette’s United States business operations. In his new role, Tipton oversees multiple departments including Franchise Sales & Development, Real Estate, Café Design & Construction, Café Operations, and many more.

Tipton joined Paris Baguette in October 2018 where he served as Vice President of Operations and COO. Prior to Paris Baguette, Tipton held numerous roles with leading restaurants and organizations in the industry, including his position as Vice President of Operations at Le Pain Quotidien.

Former Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Jack Moran, assumed the role of Global CEO, where he is responsible for business development in the Americas, Europe and other territories. Moran, who has worked at Paris Baguette since July 2018, brings over 25 years of experience within the fast-casual dining space to Paris Baguette, previously holding a variety of executive roles including CEO at Le Pain Quotidien, and Director of Operations at Au Bon Pain.

“It is a privilege to succeed Jack Moran as US CEO and I am thrilled to be working alongside him during such an exciting growth period for Paris Baguette,” says former COO, Darren Tipton.  “With the new year upon us, we are eager to continue Paris Baguette’s growing momentum and remain dynamic in enhancing our brand values while becoming one of the county’s most reputable and renowned bakery café businesses”

“It is an absolute honor to be promoted to Global CEO of Paris Baguette and to contribute to the company’s accelerated growth, expansion, and strategy across the globe,” adds former CEO Jack Moran. “As we head into 2020, I look forward to another transformative year and continuing our ultimate mission of becoming the largest and most renowned bakery café business in the world.”

View source version at Paris Baguette

Jack in the Box Inc. Promotes Three Executives Across the Board

January, 14 2020

Female Leaders Take on New Roles in Brand and Experience Marketing, Product Development and Risk Management

Jack in the Box Inc. (NASDAQ: JACK) yesterday announced the promotions of three executives: Adrienne Ingoldt to Senior Vice President, Chief Brand and Experience Officer, Jennifer Kennedy to Senior Vice President, Chief Product and Innovation Officer, and Sarah Super to Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Chief Risk Officer.

Adrienne Ingoldt, currently Vice President, Marketing Communications, has been promoted to Senior Vice President, Chief Brand and Experience Officer. Adrienne has been with Jack in the Box for over four years, where she has led the Marketing Communications team in overseeing both consumer and corporate communications, brand strategy, media, advertising and public relations, by connecting the brand to its consumers in the most authentic way. Prior to joining Jack in the Box, Adrienne worked in creative agencies on brands such as Infiniti, Ray-Ban, LensCrafters, Adidas and Asic, where she lead their advertising and annual strategic planning processes.

Jennifer Kennedy, currently Vice President, Product Marketing, has been promoted to Senior Vice President, Chief Product and Innovation Officer. Jen has been with Jack in the Box for ten years, where she has led the Product Marketing team in overseeing product development, product marketing and innovation. Jen has done an amazing job of selling the food our guests want, in a unique Jack in the Box way. Prior to joining Jack in the Box, Jen was an innovator and product developer for brands such as MillerCoors and Starbucks.

Sarah Super, currently Vice President, General Counsel, has been promoted to Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Risk Officer. Sarah has been with Jack in the Box for six years, where she has led the legal team in overseeing the litigation portfolio, risk management, asset protection and records management. Prior to joining Jack in the Box, Sarah practiced law in LA for over 10 years and was a former partner at the national law firm of Gordon & Rees. After representing Jack in the Box as outside counsel for five years, she left Gordon & Rees to become part of the Jack in the Box family.

“As we continue to expand and elevate our Executive Leadership Team, we recognized Adrienne, Jen and Sarah’s substantial contributions over the past few years, and their positive impact on the business as a whole,” states CEO Lenny Comma. “These executives have brought great value to our company, and in their new roles will continue to serve the needs of all our stakeholders. I am beyond proud of all of them and am optimistic about the future under their leadership.”

View source version at Jack in the Box

First Watch Hires First Chief Transformation Officer

January 14, 2020

Former PepsiCo executive Greg Barber fills the newly created role

Bradenton, FL  (  Award-winning breakfast, brunch and lunch concept First Watch today announced that it has hired Greg Barber as its new Chief Transformation Officer. In this newly created role, Barber is responsible for leading strategy development and will partner with First Watch’s key functional leaders on the development and implementation of critical corporate initiatives.

Prior to joining First Watch, Barber spent 9 years working for PepsiCo, Inc. in Purchase, New York, where he led strategy development for Pepsico’s North American beverage division before ultimately leading the Fortune 50 company’s global business development in the foodservice space. Prior to working for PepsiCo, he spent time working for Mrs. Fields Famous Brands as president of TCBY and has also worked for various private equity and strategy consulting firms including Bain & Company.

“As we move further into 2020, we continue to refine our strategic growth plans and invest in people and platform infrastructure to support our upward trajectory. Our focus remains on evolving in thoughtful ways to ensure First Watch’s long-term relevance while delivering lasting results,” said Chris Tomasso, CEO and president of First Watch. “Greg’s extensive experience driving growth and leading strategic business development for global organizations is a welcome complement to our high-performing senior leadership team, and he brings a passion and energy that are already making an impact at First Watch.”

Barber reports directly to First Watch CEO and President Chris Tomasso.

First Watch serves its entire menu seven days a week from 7 a.m. until 2:30 p.m.

About First Watch

First Watch is a high-growth daytime restaurant concept serving made-to-order breakfast, brunch and lunch using fresh ingredients. A recipient of more than 300 local “Best Breakfast” and “Best Brunch” accolades, First Watch offers traditional favorites, such as pancakes, omelets, sandwiches and salads, alongside specialty items like Quinoa Power Bowls, Avocado Toast and the Chickichanga. First Watch was recognized as Nation’s Restaurant News’ top Consumer Pick in the breakfast category as well as the coffee category for its Project Sunrise coffee program in 2019. It was also named one of TripAdvisor’s Best Restaurant Chains for 2019 and one of Business Intelligence Group’s Best Places to Work in 2018. First Watch has more than 370 restaurants in 29 states and is majority owned by Advent International, one of the world’s largest private-equity firms. For more information, visit

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Taco John’s Adds Three New Industry Veterans to its Board of Directors

January 14, 2020

Experienced executives join popular quick-service restaurant franchisor’s board of directors

Cheyenne, WY  (  Taco John’s International, Inc., the franchisor of Taco John’s – the restaurant that has been serving bigger. bolder. better. flavors since 1969 – announced today the addition of three new board members: Greg Haggis, Scott Weisberg and Les Karel.

“We are thrilled to welcome Greg, Scott and Les to the Taco John’s International Board of Directors,” said CEO Jim Creel. “All three have impressive and diverse backgrounds in the industry. I believe each of them will bring something incredibly unique and valuable to the table that will help lead Taco John’s to see even more success in the future.”

Haggis, a seasoned executive, brings nearly 40 years of experience in the food industry to Taco John’s board. After beginning his career at McDonald’s Corporation in 1981 as a store accountant, Haggis moved on to The Wendy’s Company, where he worked for nearly 30 years and served as senior vice president of finance and brand chief financial officer. Haggis is chief financial officer for The Wenzak Companies, a 35-unit Wendy’s franchisee in Illinois, Indiana and Iowa.

Industry veteran Weisberg is an HR executive with a range of progressive experience within multi-national, consumer organizations such as Wendy’s, General Mills, Nabisco, Inc., and PepsiCo, Inc. He served as chief people officer at Wendy’s International, Inc. for six years before starting his own executive coaching and consulting business, Incisive Consulting, LLC, in 2018.

Another proven leader in the industry, Karel is a supply chain professional with experience spanning across corporate, franchise, multi-brand and high growth foodservice organizations. Karel brings restaurant knowledge to Taco John’s from former roles at General Mills Restaurants, Inc., Boston Market, Darden Restaurants, Inc. and Arby’s/Wendy’s Group. From 2011 to 2019, Karel served as senior vice president for ARCOP, Inc., Arby’s national supply chain cooperative.

With its fusion of distinctive flavors and south-of-the-border spices, the Taco John’s menu offers several signature items, including Meat & Potato Burritos, Stuffed Grilled Tacos and Potato Olés®. Taco John’s features signature specials like Taco Tuesday® and discounted breakfast burritos on Wake Up Wednesday!® Download the Taco John’s App and like Taco John’s Facebook page for exclusive deals.

About Taco John’s®

Taco John’s operates and franchises nearly 400 quick-service restaurants in 23 states. Privately owned, the business opened its first restaurant in 1969 in Cheyenne, Wyo. Taco John’s prides itself on serving generous portions, menu items prepared fresh to your order, high quality ingredients and special recipes, seasonings and sauces. For more information or to apply for a position, visit

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Coolgreens Promotes Todd Madlener to President and Chief Operating Officer

January 14, 2020

Healthy lifestyle eatery elevates industry veteran known for embodying a positive and motivating company culture

Oklahoma City, OK  (  Coolgreens – the healthy lifestyle eatery that “feeds your life” – announced today that it promoted Todd Madlener from vice president of operations to president and chief operating officer, reporting to CEO Robert Lee.

“On behalf of Coolgreens and its franchisees, I am very proud of Todd for earning this promotion,” Lee said. “He has made such a huge impact with our team since joining us. He has brought a wealth of industry experience to our brand and taught us what it is like to have a truly positive and supportive culture. His commitment to our employees and guests is an example for all of us.”

A seasoned leader in the industry, Madlener joined Coolgreens in October of 2018 after working with MAD Greens and PB&J restaurants, where he opened more than 15 new locations in four states in less than 24 months. Before this, Madlener gained extensive operations and franchise experience at Red Robin, where he spent more than 20 years.

While at Red Robin, Madlener saw first-hand the dramatic difference that a motivated and positive work experience can have on a growing brand. Over the past two years, the Coolgreens restaurant teams have embraced the idea of people coming first and actions speaking louder than words.

“I am honored to take on this new role at Coolgreens,” Madlener said. “We have implemented positive behaviors into our work environment through our Coolstory program and many other new training and development practices. As a leader, you have to be able to identify when and how to address situations. By interacting and connecting with your team consistently, you can show people that they come first and that they matter above all else. Using this approach, we have been able to achieve positive year-over-year sales the past eight quarters and reduced our turnover to under 60%. Further, we have implemented cost saving initiatives to support our bottom line. Our future is bright as the entire Coolgreens team continues working together to realize our full potential.”

For more information, please visit For more information on Coolgreens franchising opportunities, visit

About Coolgreens

Coolgreens is a healthy lifestyle eatery committed to making the communities it serves a better place to live by creating healthy, fresh, made-to-order creations. The menu caters to a variety of lifestyles and diets, featuring signature salads, wraps, grain bowls and sandwiches. Founded in 2009, Coolgreens currently has nine locations throughout Oklahoma City, Tulsa and Dallas-Fort Worth. Coolgreens was named one of Fast Casual’s 2019 Top 100 Movers & Shakers and one of USA Today’s Best Airport Grab-And-Go Dining destinations.

View source version at Coolgreens

Yum! Brands Appoints GODIVA CEO Annie Young-Scrivner and InterContinental Hotels Group PLC CEO Keith Barr to Board

January 13, 2020 09:00 AM Eastern Standard Time

LOUISVILLE, Ky.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Yum! Brands, Inc. (NYSE: YUM) today announced the appointments of Annie Young-Scrivner, Chief Executive Officer of GODIVA Chocolatier, and Keith Barr, Chief Executive Officer of InterContinental Hotels Group® (IHG®), to its Board as non-executive directors, effective January 24, 2020.

“Annie and Keith have both demonstrated strong global leadership experience and bring proven track records in driving performance and innovation for well-known brands, making them excellent additions to the Yum! Brands Board,” said Brian Cornell, Non-Executive Chairman of the Yum! Brands Board of Directors and Chairman and CEO of Target Corporation. “We’re pleased that Annie and Keith will be joining us as Yum! Brands begins its next exciting chapter of global growth.”

“As CEO of GODIVA, Annie has deep experience in global brand-building and market development, and we look forward to the consumer insights and best practices she will bring as we focus on building relevant, easy and distinctive brands that help us deliver more value for franchisees and shareholders,” said David Gibbs, Chief Executive Officer, Yum! Brands. “Annie also brings a wealth of knowledge around digital engagement with consumers, which will be beneficial as we continue to advance the customer experience with technology at the forefront.”

Gibbs continued, “Keith runs a diverse, industry-leading portfolio of hotel brands and is hyper focused on the customer experience and value creation for owners and operators in more than 100 countries. His responsibilities as CEO of IHG, combined with the company’s highly franchised model and focus on building global scale, will allow Keith to make invaluable contributions to the Yum! Board that will unlock growth and benefit our shareholders.”

About Annie Young-Scrivner

Young-Scrivner has served as CEO of GODIVA Chocolatier, the global leader in premium, artisanal chocolate, since September 2017. Prior to joining GODIVA, she served in a variety of senior executive roles at Starbucks Corporation since 2009, including Executive Vice President, Global Digital & Loyalty Development; President, Teavana & Executive Vice President of Global Tea; President of Starbucks Canada; and Global Chief Marketing Officer & President of Tazo Tea. Prior to her time at Starbucks, Young-Scrivner spent 19 years at PepsiCo, serving in senior leadership positions in sales, marketing and general management including CMO and Head of Sales for Quaker Foods and Snacks Division; Chairman and Region President of PepsiCo Foods Greater China; and Vice President and General Manager of PepsiCo’s Target team.

In addition to her current duties as CEO, Young-Scrivner serves on the Board of Directors of Tiffany & Co., and has served on the board of Macy’s, Inc. Young-Scrivner holds a Bachelor of Arts from the Foster School of Business, University of Washington, and an Executive MBA from the Carlson School of Business, University of Minnesota. She has also had executive education training at Yale School of Management, IMD in Switzerland, and the Darden School of Business, University of Virginia.

About Keith Barr

Barr has served as CEO of IHG, a global organization that predominately franchises and manages nearly 5,800 hotels and whose brands include InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, the Holiday Inn® Brand Family and Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, since July 2017. He has spent more than 25 years working in the hospitality industry having started his career in hotel operations. Barr joined IHG in 2000 and subsequently held a number of senior positions in its Americas and Asia, Middle East and Africa (AMEA) regions. He has been a member of IHG’s Executive Committee since April 2011 at which time he was serving as CEO of IHG’s Greater China business. He was then appointed Chief Commercial Officer for four years where he led IHG’s global brand, loyalty, sales and marketing functions, driving consistent brand strategies and leveraging IHG’s scale and systems to deliver industry outperformance.

Prior to joining IHG, Barr held several senior positions at Bristol Hotels and Resorts. Barr serves on the Board of IHG and sits on the International Advisory Board of EHL. He is a graduate of Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration. Barr is currently a member of the Dean's Advisory Board for the School of Hotel Administration, Cornell SC Johnson College of Business.

About Yum! Brands, Inc.

Yum! Brands, Inc., based in Louisville, Kentucky, has over 49,000 restaurants in more than 145 countries and territories primarily operating the company’s restaurant brands – KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell – global leaders of the chicken, pizza and Mexican-style food categories. Worldwide, the Yum! Brands system opens over eight new restaurants per day on average, making it a leader in global retail development. In 2018, Yum! Brands was named to the Dow Jones Sustainability North America Index and ranked among the top 100 Best Corporate Citizens by Corporate Responsibility Magazine. In 2019, Yum! Brands was named to the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index for the second consecutive year.

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Tim Brown Named Vice President Chief of Operations for Marco's Pizza

January, 13 2020

Marco's Franchising, LLC. announced Tim Brown as its Vice President, Chief of Operations. The announcement comes at an essential time as Marco's Pizza approaches 1,000 locations and ramps up international growth.

Brown, a Marco's Pizza Area Representative and Franchisee for more than a decade, will lead both franchise operations as well as company-managed operations. Brown began his career in the pizza industry 40 years ago as a delivery driver for Domino's, while attending The Ohio State University. He worked his way up the ranks at Domino's and ultimately became the Senior Vice President of Operations for its largest franchisee, overseeing stores in eight states and two foreign countries. He joined the Marco's Pizza brand in 2008 and now owns nine stores and serves as an Area Representative for Marco's Pizza in Alabama and Middle Tennessee.

"Tim will be a great addition to the Marco's Operations and Executive Leadership Teams," said Tony Libardi, President and COO of Marco's Pizza. "We're excited to add a person with his expertise, proven performance, and commitment to excellence. He knows how to deliver a five-star experience in his stores, and we look for him to help apply those best practices to the rest of the system."

As Chief of Operations, Brown will bring his need for speed to the rest of the brand while looking to make immediate improvements to penny profits and helping stores realize true cost savings. These efforts begin with building a team designed to work with franchisees and Area Representatives to provide training and enhancements to overall operations systemwide.

"I joined this brand years ago because I believed in the product and our culture of performance," said Brown. "As we approach 1,000 locations, it's essential we create a great experience for our guests and our employees, which starts with executing operational excellence always. The future is bright for Marco's Pizza and I'm thrilled to be joining the leadership team at such a pivotal time of growth."

Opening a new store every three and a half days on average, Marco's Pizza is committed to continued growth and increasing its presence internationally by late 2020. As America's Most-Loved and Most-Trusted pizza brand, Marco's has carved out a niche in the industry for authentic Italian quality pizza, known for its fresh dough made daily onsite, a proprietary cheese blend that is fresh, never-frozen, and a secret original pizza sauce recipe from its founder Pat Giammarco.

"Tim's deep understanding of our company history and culture, and his experience with Marco's Pizza gives him a unique and welcomed perspective. I worked with Tim back in his days with Domino's and again, here at Marco's. We are honored to have his experience and passionate personality added to our hard-working leadership team to help collectively drive our brand's stellar reputation forward," Steve Seyferth, Marco's Pizza SVP, Chief Experience Officer.

View source version at Marco's Pizza'

Black Bear Diner Names Anita Adams Chief Executive Officer, Adds Jeff Guido as Chief Operating Officer

Adams brings executive-level leadership experience; Co-founder and longtime CEO Bruce Dean steps into executive chairman role

January 09, 2020 08:00 AM Eastern Standard Time

REDDING, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Black Bear Diner, the fast-growing, family dining concept that offers a one-of-a-kind experience and home-style comfort food classics in a friendly, bear-themed atmosphere, has announced the promotion of Anita Adams to chief executive officer and the addition of restaurant veteran Jeff Guido as chief operating officer. Bruce Dean, the brand’s co-founder and CEO, will remain active with the company as executive chairman.

“As co-founder and chief executive officer, Black Bear Diner is now entering its 25th year in business,” said Dean. “We have grown this brand larger than I ever would have anticipated and hoped for, and there is much more to come. My focus is now on perpetuating the next 25 years and ensuring we continue to prosper, grow and be the leader in family dining. Succession planning is paramount to ensure our long-term success, and to that end, I will be assuming the executive chairman position. I’m pleased to announce that Anita Adams, our president and former chief financial officer, will now assume the role of chief executive officer. Anita is a true industry professional, and she is the right person to guide Black Bear Diner in our next chapter of success.”

With 24 years of broad leadership and transaction experience across private and public companies, Adams was most recently president of Black Bear Diner, overseeing short- and long-term strategies that drove the brand’s rapid growth and performance, as well as the franchise’s shared services, including operations, franchise and corporate development and human resources. Adams first joined the company in 2017 as chief financial officer. In March of 2019, Adams was promoted to president in addition to her role as CFO. In October that same year, the company hired Steve Sparks to assume the role of CFO, allowing Adams to focus on her role as President.

“Black Bear Diner has enjoyed an amazing 25 years and I am proud to assume the CEO role of such a well-respected brand,” said Adams. “Our efforts have been focused on building a scalable foundation to support our aggressive growth strategy, while ensuring we stay true to the brand’s heritage of hospitality, quality and operational excellence. I look forward to partnering with our franchise community, team leaders and shareholders to position the brand for continued prosperity.”

For nearly a decade before joining Black Bear Diner, Adams was CFO of American Blue Ribbon Holdings (ABRH), a diversified food service company that operated more than 690 company and franchise restaurants in more than 40 states, where she helped grow revenue from $400 million to $1.2 billion, managing five restaurant brands and a bakery operation. Before that, she was the vice president controller for VICORP Restaurant Group prior to its acquisition by ABRH, and the vice president of corporate accounting for First Data Corporation, a Fortune 500 global financial services company generating over $10 billion in revenue, in addition to high ranking financial roles with PRO Group, Inc., Seahawk Minerals and Pricewaterhouse Coopers. She has a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Wyoming and holds an active CPA license in the State of Colorado.

Guido joins Black Bear Diner as chief operating officer by way of ABRH where he held the position of president for the Family Restaurant Division, overseeing all financial and administrative aspects of Village Inn and Baker’s Square restaurant concepts. During that time, Guido built an exceptional team that delivered 26 consecutive quarters of same store sales growth. With over 40 years leading major restaurant brands, Guido has consistently built value for stakeholders by identifying strategic opportunities to provide exceptional customer service.

“My mission at Black Bear Diner is to ensure we’re operating at the same extraordinarily high level that the company did when it opened its first, single restaurant 25 years ago,” said Guido. “Offering a consistently great experience as we continue to expand is critical. I look forward to working alongside a great leadership team to strengthen Black Bear Diner’s already exceptional offerings of enthusiastic customer service and abundant, quality food to more guests across the nation.”

Dean co-founded Black Bear Diner in 1995, and served as co-president until 2016 when he was named CEO. He will remain with the company as executive chairman. Dean contributed to the brand’s early success by leveraging his early beginnings in the restaurant business. He created the recipes for some of the brand’s most popular and best-selling food items and is also the visionary behind “bear-sized” portions, a brand commitment to deliver unrivaled comfort food value and portions.

“Bruce has shown that family dining, when done right and with authenticity, is here to stay,” said Adams. “Over the last several years, I’ve highly valued Bruce’s leadership and partnership, and will continue to benefit from his experience and passion.”

The last year has demonstrated the brand’s continuous efforts to build Black Bear Diner’s executive leadership team following years of growth and geographic expansion. The executive leadership team includes Bruce Dean, executive chairman; Anita Adams, chief executive officer; Jeff Guido, chief operating officer; Steve Sparks, chief financial officer; Joe Adney, chief marketing officer; and Tammy Johns, chief people officer.

About Black Bear Diner

Founded in Mt. Shasta, Calif., in 1995, Black Bear Diner brings home-style comfort food classics and personal service to the dining experience. The quickly growing family dining concept, open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, offers a vast, enticing menu anchored in hearty portions and excellent value, with service rooted in genuine hospitality. The franchise now operates 138 locations in 14 states and growing. Black Bear Diner has been consistently recognized for its significant growth and outstanding performance. The company has been recognized as a Top 10 Customer Service Winner, a Top 10 Fastest-Growing Chain and a Top Disruptor from Nation’s Restaurant News. Franchise Times has called Black Bear Diner one of the “smartest-growing brands” in the country. For a full menu and additional information, please visit

View source version at Black Bear Diner

BBQ Holdings Names Jim Gilbertson Chief Financial Officer

JANUARY 9, 2020

BBQ Holdings, Inc, the holding company behind Famous Dave’s, announced the appointment by the Board of Directors of Jim Gilbertson as the new Chief Financial Officer of the company.

Over the past 20 years Jim has been the Chief Financial Officer of a number of local public companies including Children’s Broadcasting Corporation (Radio AAHS), Navarre Corporation, and Granite City Food & Brewery. During his tenure at Granite City from 2007 to 2014, Gilbertson was able to help guide the Company through the recession and initiate substantial growth thereafter. He also served as Vice President of Business Development and Cable Distribution at iMedia Brands, Inc. and Executive Business Advisor and Board Member of rareEARTH. He most recently served as the CFO of Bluespire, Inc, a digital marketing agency in Minneapolis. Jim received his accounting degree from the University of Iowa and has MBA degrees from the Carlson School of Management in Finance and Marketing.

Jeff Crivello, Chief Executive Officer, says, “We are excited for the addition of Jim to our BBQ family. Jim’s depth and breadth of knowledge with public companies and acquisitions is the skill set we were looking for. Jim has a great rapport and reputation within the community. He will play an important role as we execute our growth plan.”

View source version at BBQ Holdings


The company named Lucy Brady its chief digital customer engagement officer and elevated the status of CIO Daniel Henry as it works to bolster its use of technology.By Jonathan Maze on Jan. 08, 2020

McDonald’s on Wednesday announced major changes to its digital leadership as the company continues to build on the technology used inside of its restaurants.The Chicago-based burger giant named Lucy Brady its chief digital customer engagement officer, a newly created position that will report to CEO Chris Kempczinski and will lead a new digital customer engagement team at the company.Daniel Henry, the Chicago-based company’s global chief information officer, will now report directly to new CEO Chris Kempczinski.“We must accelerate our focus on the digital experience by taking a more holistic approach that drives value from our existing customer-facing digital investments to better engage customers and drive profitable growth,” Kempczinski told employees in a systemwide message sent Wednesday and shared with members of the media.Digital ordering is increasingly important to McDonald’s, and other chains as well, and the burger giant has invested heavily in recent years to bolster its capabilities. It is adding digital kiosks inside its U.S. restaurants as well as artificial intelligence technology in its drive-thrus. The company made a pair of major technology acquisitions last year in Dynamic Yield and Apprente.It has also jumped into third-party delivery with both feet through deals with services Uber Eats and DoorDash.Yet Kempczinski said meetings with operators and employees in the U.S. and around the world indicated that the company isn’t doing enough on this front. “Digital is transforming global retail, and it will transform McDonald’s,” he said. “At the same time, I’ve heard your feedback that we still have more work to do to fulfill our digital potential.”“Technology is growing exponentially in our business and will be a strong catalyst for growth.”Kempczinski noted that Henry has “spearheaded a new product-centric approach to technology” that “will yield great dividends for us going forward.”Brady has been McDonald’s senior vice president of corporate strategy and business development for the past three years. Kempczinski said that group was a driving force behind the rapid expansion of McDelivery, which grew into a $4 billion global business from $1 billion in 2017.Brady’s team also “ran point on the acquisition of Dynamic Yield,” which is already improving average check in drive-thrus with digitized menu boards that suggest items based on time of day and weather and other things.Global delivery along with marketing technology will report directly to Brady in her new role, which will be designed to analyze technology “through the lens of the customer.”

The team will feature “experts from marketing technology, finance, operations, marketing, insights, analytics and other functions to develop world-class digital experiences including ordering, personalization, loyalty and delivery,” Brady said in a message to employees.

The group will work alongside a new Digital Advisory Council featuring executives such as McDonald’s USA President Joe Erlinger, CFO Kevin Ozan, International President Ian Borden, Brady, Henry and Colin Mitchel, the company’s senior vice president of global marketing.

Brady said that the team plans to “proceed quickly to keep pace with the external environment,” even as it is “thoughtful about this team’s priorities.” She said the company plans to seek input from various markets and groups over the next 90 days and will share more in April.

View source version at McDonald's


January, 08, 2020

DALLAS, Jan. 08, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Wingstop Inc. (NASDAQ: WING) today announced the appointment of Mahesh Sadarangani as Chief Operating Officer, previously Wingstop’s Senior Vice President of Channel Strategy, effective immediately. In his new role, Mahesh will be responsible for domestic operations and will continue reporting to Charlie Morrison, Chairman and CEO. Mahesh is replacing Larry Kruguer, who resigned on December 26, 2019.

With more than 20 years of operational leadership experience, Mahesh joined Wingstop in July 2019 from CEC Entertainment, the parent company for Chuck E. Cheese and Peter Piper Pizza. Most recently, Mahesh served as Chief Administrative Officer of CEC Entertainment and President of the Peter Piper Pizza brand leading strategy, revenue management, supply chain, and operations. Previous executive roles include the leadership of financial planning and analysis, sales, and various strategic functions across a range of industries and companies including FedEx Kinko’s, where he and Charlie first met. Mahesh has also served in various management and operations roles at private equity owned companies such as Cardinal Logistics, Reddy Ice and TXU Energy.

During his time as SVP of Channel Strategy, Mahesh helped strengthen and refine the execution of Wingstop’s growth strategy. In particular, he led the completion of the rollout of national delivery, made a significant impact on in-restaurant pricing strategy, and was instrumental in furthering Wingstop’s goal to expand its presence in non-traditional locations.

“Since joining the team, Mahesh has spent a significant amount of time focusing on in-restaurant processes, developing meaningful relationships with our brand partners and learning the ins and outs of our operations,” said Charlie Morrison, Chairman and CEO. “We’re continually investing in our people to ensure we have the right team to propel our company to the next level, and Mahesh’s vast experience in operations and formulating strategy make him an excellent choice to lead our domestic operations while we continue down our path of becoming a top 10 global restaurant brand. I would also like to sincerely thank Larry for his commitment to Wingstop over the past five years and recognize the significant contributions he made to grow the business both domestically and abroad.”

“I’m thrilled to expand my role at a fast-growing, industry-leading brand like Wingstop,” said Mahesh Sadarangani, Chief Operating Officer. “I have immense respect for the amazing team the organization has built and look forward to working closer with our brand partners and continue serving the world flavor.”

In addition to Mahesh’s appointment, Wingstop is also announcing that Nicolas Boudet, President of Wingstop International, will continue in his role overseeing operations on the international level, but will now also report directly to Charlie Morrison, Chairman and CEO.

About Wingstop

Founded in 1994 and headquartered in Dallas, TX, Wingstop Inc. (NASDAQ: WING) operates and franchises more than 1,300 locations worldwide. The Wing Experts are dedicated to Serving the World Flavor through an unparalleled guest experience and offering of classic wings, boneless wings and tenders, always cooked to order and hand-sauced-and-tossed in fans’ choice of 11 bold, distinctive flavors. Wingstop’s menu also features signature sides including fresh-cut, seasoned fries and freshly-made ranch and bleu cheese dips.

In 2018, Wingstop’s system-wide sales increased 16% year-over-year to $1.3 billion, marking the 15th consecutive year of same store sales growth as well as 290% shareholder return since its 2015 initial public offering. With a vision of becoming a Top 10 Global Restaurant Brand, its system is comprised of independent brand partners who account for more than 98% of Wingstop’s total restaurant count of 1,340 as of September 28, 2019. In February 2019, the Company launched its new tagline and creative campaign “Where Flavor Gets Its Wings” and continued the rollout of national delivery. Wingstop generates more than 35% of sales via digital channels including, the Wingstop app, and Wingbot™, Wingstop’s social ordering platform available on Facebook Messenger, Twitter, SMS text and Amazon Alexa. The Company has been ranked on Franchise Business Review’s “Top 30 Food and Beverage Franchises” (2019), Fast Casual’s “Movers & Shakers” (2019), QSR Magazine’s “The Industry’s 9 Best Franchise Deals” (2019) and “The QSR Top 50” (2019) for limited-service restaurants in the U.S.

For more information visit or and follow @Wingstop on Twitter and Instagram and at Learn more about Wingstop’s involvement in its local communities at

View source version at Wingstop

Red Robin terminates COO without cause

by Julie Littman

Jan. 8, 2020

Dive Brief:

  1. Red Robin terminated Guy J. Constant's employment as EVP and chief operating officer, according to an SEC filing.

  2. His termination was without cause.

  3. The company is starting an external search for a new COO. In the meantime, current SVP and chief people officer, Michael Buchmeier, will assume responsibilities as interim COO.

Dive Insight:

Red Robin has endured quite a few leadership changes within the last 18 months. It hired Paul J.B. Murphy III as president and CEO in October after a nearly four-month search and replaced three board members in August and its board chair in October.

Constant, who joined the company as chief financial officer in 2016replaced Carin Stutz in 2018 as COO when she was terminated without cause. At the time, the company was also focused on regaining its operational edge, improving wait times and table turns, and decreasing the number of people walking away without being seated. It has since implemented various technologies, such as rolling out handheld POS terminals during Q3 2019.

But even after a COO change, the restaurant still struggled with slumping same-store sales and faced growing opposition among its shareholders, including Vintage Capital’s takeover bid of $40 per share that the chain's board unanimously rejected.

Red Robin shareholder Viex Capital Advisors suggested in December that the company needs a different direction, capitalization and board of directors — even though the company just refreshed its board — and criticized the company’s lack of a clear strategic plan after rejecting Vintage’s bid, according to Restaurant Business.

Given Red Robin’s ongoing struggles, which include a 2.2% decline in comparable revenue and 5.1% decline in guest counts during the first nine months of 2019, the question is whether a new COO will be able to fix things fast enough to quash investor anxiety.

View source version at Red Robin

Restaurant Industry Veteran Joins Farmer Boys as Senior Vice President of Operations

January 8, 2020

David Wetzel Will Provide Strategic Oversight and Direction for Restaurant Operations

Riverside, CA  (  Farmer Boys®, the farm fresh fast casual concept known for its award-winning burgers and exceptional service, has added restaurant industry veteran Dave Wetzel as its new Senior Vice President of Operations. In this role, Wetzel is responsible for overseeing both company and franchise restaurant operations. He will play a key role in defining the strategic direction for the brand and overseeing field execution.

“Farmer Boys is already known for its exceptional customer service, so I’m looking forward to joining the team to help enhance everyday operations at both the restaurant and corporate level,” said Wetzel. “Our goal is to capitalize on Farmer Boys’ great reputation and put systems into place that will streamline operations and help make the job of restaurant team members easier and more effective.”

Wetzel brings with him more than 35 years of restaurant industry expertise including over two decades devoted to quick-service concepts. He most recently held the position of Vice President Franchise Operations at Del Taco Restaurants and has led highly successful operating teams at The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, El Pollo Loco and Taco Bell.

“Dave has vast experience working with nationally and locally-recognized quick-service concepts, and we’re excited for his passion and expertise to enhance the experience of our team members and customers alike,” said Karen Eadon, President and COO of Farmer Boys. “He has helped build numerous brands through superior operations systems and strategic growth, and we have full confidence that he will continue to have the same proven results with the Farmer Boys organization.”

To learn more about Farmer Boys, view their menu of farm fresh fare, or find the restaurant nearest you, visit and follow the brand at @FarmerBoysFood on Instagram and Facebook, and @FarmerBoys on Twitter.

About Farmer Boys®

Founded in 1981, Farmer Boys® is a farm-to-table fast casual restaurant chain serving award-winning burgers and all-day breakfast, stacked sandwiches, hand-chopped salads, and signature hand-breaded zucchini sticks and onion rings. At Farmer Boys, Farm Food Ain’t Fast Food®. Farmer Boys is annually recognized with ‘Best Of’ food awards, voted by consumers who value generous portions of farm fresh food at a fair price. The burger concept has also been recognized by notable industry publications, including being named one of Fast Casual’s Top 100 Movers & Shakers. Farmer Boys currently operates restaurants in California and Nevada. For more information, visit

View source version at Farmer Boys

RAVE Restaurant Group Names Clint Fendley New Vice President of Finance

January 7, 2020

Former 7-Eleven executive to serve as principal financial officer for parent company of Pizza Inn and Pie Five Pizza Co.

Dallas, TX  (  RAVE Restaurant Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: RAVE), the parent company of Pizza Inn and Pie Five Pizza Co., announced today the hiring of Clint Fendley as its vice president of finance, effective immediately.

“We are very excited to welcome Clint to the RAVE team,” said Brandon Solano, CEO of RAVE Restaurant Group. “He brings extensive and impressive financial experience to RAVE. As a leader with a proven track record of success in retail, service and global banking companies, we look forward to having him help improve our company as he becomes a key business partner to me and the rest of our executive team.”

Fendley began his finance career as an auditor for Price Waterhouse LLP. He also served as a senior research analyst at Davenport & Company, LLC, an investment advisory and wealth management firm, before becoming the company’s first vice president in 2009.

Most recently, Fendley worked for 7-Eleven, where he started as senior financial analyst and was promoted to international finance manager after his first year. He was then named data analytics and strategy manager of new concepts before joining the RAVE team.

“I’m honored and thrilled to take on this role at RAVE,” Fendley said. “I believe I can add a tremendous amount of value to the organization, so I can’t wait to get started.  I’m looking forward to optimizing the financial performance and accelerating the growth trajectory of Pizza Inn and Pie Five. I look forward to a strong beginning in 2020 with an exceptional executive team at my side.”

About RAVE Restaurant Group, Inc.

Founded in 1958, Dallas-based RAVE Restaurant Group, Inc. owns, operates, franchises and/or licenses 261 Pie Five Pizza Co. and Pizza Inn restaurants and Pizza Inn Express kiosks domestically and internationally. Pizza Inn is an international chain featuring freshly made pizzas, along with salads, pastas and desserts. Pie Five Pizza Co. is a leader in the rapidly growing fast-casual pizza space offering made-to-order pizzas ready in under five minutes. Pizza Inn Express, or PIE, is developing unique opportunities to provide freshly made pizza from non-traditional outlets. The Company’s common stock is listed on the Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbol “RAVE.” For more information, please visit

View source version at RAVE Restaurant Group

Steve Bramlage Will Remain as Executive Advisor Through Transition

PHILADELPHIA, PA, January 6, 2020 – Aramark (NYSE:ARMK), a $16 billion global leader in food, facilities management and uniforms, announced today that Thomas Ondrof will join the Company as Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, effective January 7, 2020, succeeding Steve Bramlage who will remain with the Company until April 3, 2020 in the role of Executive Advisor to assist in this transition.

Ondrof previously served as Chief Financial Officer with Performance Food Group (NYSE:PFGC), a $23 billion foodservice distributor. Prior to PFG, Ondrof spent 24 years at Compass Group North America, where he served in a variety of financial and business development leadership roles, including Chief Development Officer, Chief Strategy Officer and Chief Financial Officer.

“Tom is a proven financial leader who brings tremendous industry insight and acumen to Aramark that will be invaluable to the Company’s future success,” said John Zillmer, Chief Executive Officer, Aramark. “On behalf of the Board, I want to thank Steve Bramlage for his numerous contributions over the past 5 years, as well as his expertise and guidance during this transition period. We wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”

“I am incredibly excited to join Aramark at such a dynamic time in the Company’s history,” said Tom Ondrof. “I look forward to leading the finance organization and working closely with John and the leadership team to accelerate Aramark’s revenue growth and unlock shareholder value.”

About Tom Ondrof As CFO of Performance Food Group, Ondrof created multiple working capital and post-IPO strategic financial initiatives. During his time at Compass, Ondrof led multi-billion dollar acquisitions, and guided a financial organization that helped propel the company to exceptional revenue and profit growth. Prior to his time at Compass, Ondrof worked in planning and development at ITT Rayonier (NYSE:RYN), a Fortune 500 timberland real estate investment trust. He began his career as an auditor with PricewaterhouseCoopers. Ondrof holds an MBA from University of Georgia and a bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Wake Forest University.

About Aramark Aramark (NYSE: ARMK) proudly serves the world’s leading educational institutions, Fortune 500 companies, world champion sports teams, prominent healthcare providers, iconic destinations and cultural attractions, and numerous municipalities in 19 countries around the world. Our 280,000 team members deliver innovative experiences and services in food, facilities management and uniforms to millions of people every day. We strive to create a better world by making a positive impact on people and the planet, including commitments to engage our employees; empower healthy consumers; build local communities; source ethically, inclusively and responsibly; operate efficiently; and reduce waste. Aramark is recognized as a Best Place to Work by the Human Rights Campaign (LGBTQ), DiversityInc, Black Enterprise and the Disability Equality Index. Learn more at or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

View source version at Aramark

Axel Schwan Named Regional President of Tim Hortons for Canada and the US

January, 2 2020

Restaurant Brands International CEO Jose Cil today announced that Axel Schwan will join the global leadership team of the company.  Mr. Schwan was appointed the Regional President of Tim Hortons for Canada and the US in October.

"I am very proud to welcome Axel to the leadership team. I have worked closely with him in Europe, the U.S. and now in Canada and he has proven himself to be a valuable leader of our Tim Hortons business, as well as a strong leader of people and teams," said Mr. Cil.

Axel Schwan will add the Latin America region to his accountabilities. Other international Tim Hortons locations and continued restaurant growth will be led through RBI's existing global leadership team.

Additionally, Mr. Cil announced that Alex Macedo has chosen to leave the company in March 2020. Mr. Macedo will remain available between now and March 2020 to facilitate a smooth transition.  "Alex was invaluable in establishing a strong growth trajectory for Burger King in the United States and led Tim Hortons through a period of transition earlier last year," continued Mr. Cil.  "Alex has all our best wishes as he leaves RBI."

View source version at Tim Hortons


The group’s CFO and chief people officer will also fulfill the CEO’s duties for the NRAEF until a new chief for both bodies is brought aboard.By Peter Romeo on Dec. 19, 2019

The National Restaurant Association has appointed CFO and Chief People Officer Marvin Irby as interim CEO and president starting Jan. 1 and continuing until a full-time replacement for current chief Dawn Sweeney is in place.Irby will also function as CEO of the group’s educational arm, the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation, which Sweeney also heads.Sweeney announced in May that she would retire from both posts on Dec. 31, capping a 12-year tenure. A committee of the Association’s board commenced a search for her replacement at that time, with Sweeney assisting in that effort.That effort continues, the Association said.

View source version at National Restaurant Association

Smokey Bones Hires New Leadership Team

Dec 18, 2019, 08:05 ET

AVENTURA, Fla., Dec. 18 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Under the direction of new CEO James O'Reilly, Smokey Bones has brought on a new and experienced executive leadership team to drive financial and operational performance, sales and unit growth, menu and beverage development and guest satisfaction and loyalty. The new team's purpose is to lead Smokey Bones to become one of the leading casual dining brands in the restaurant industry. O'Reilly's team has over 100 years of combined restaurant experience, and has aligned around the brand's new strategic plan.

The new hires include Hal Lawlor, chief operating officer; Danielle Connor, chief marketing officer; Chef Peter Farrand, chief officer of food and beverage innovation; Brian Wallunas, chief technology officer; Rachel Kelly-Marcus, chief human resources officer; and Joey Stewart, chief development officer.

"As we continue on the path of healthy and sustained growth, the executive leadership team we have assembled further demonstrates our commitment to our brand, our people, our culture, and our guests," said James O'Reilly, CEO of Smokey Bones.  "Within the short time the new team has been in place, they have already impacted the direction of the company and made positive changes."

Led by CEO James O'Reilly, the Smokey Bones executive leadership team includes:

James O'Reilly, Chief Executive Officer O'Reilly joined Smokey Bones in May 2019 as chief executive officer and has amassed over 25 years of experience working in the restaurant and consumer goods industries. Prior to joining Smokey Bones, he was the CEO for Long John Silver's.  His previous experience includes leading Marketing and R&D for Sonic Drive-In, Einstein Noah Restaurant Group and Yum Brands (Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, KFC), both internationally and in the U.S.

Nicole Milnthorpe, Chief Financial Officer, CPA Milnthorpe has been with Smokey Bones as chief financial officer since October 2015.  Before that she spent nearly 13 years with Deloitte & Touche, and then several years as the President and CFO for Shula's Steakhouse.  Nicole graduated from the University of Miami Herbert Business School with a BBA in Accounting.  She was awarded the designation of "40 under 40" by the South Florida Business Journal in 2015.

Hal Lawlor, Chief Operating Officer Lawlor joined Smokey Bones as chief operating officer in July 2019.  He has extensive experience in the casual dining industry having previously worked in senior Operations positions for Red Lobster for many years and more recently, PF Chang's.  Lawlor prides himself in building, developing and retaining high performance teams.

Chef Peter Farrand, Chief Food & Beverage Innovation Officer Farrand joins Smokey Bones from Schulte Hospitality Group, where he was the corporate director of food and beverage.  Schulte owns and manages over 150 hotels, full-service restaurants, and the 10-unit fast casual hot chicken concept, Joella's.  Prior to that, he was with Shula's Restaurant Group as vice president of operations and the corporate executive chef.

Brian Wallunas, Chief Technology Officer Wallunas brings over 15 year of digital and technology experience, working with leading consumer brands such as Domino's, Arby's and Coca Cola to position these organizations for success in the digital economy.  Throughout his career, he has redesigned eCommerce-enabled websites and launched leading mobile applications.  While at Domino's, they launched an AI powered interactive voice assistant, Dom.

Danielle Connor, Chief Marketing Officer Connor's brand marketing career spans more than 20 years in the consumer packaged goods and restaurant industries.  She fell in love with the restaurant industry 12 years ago when she began working for Darden and has spent the last five years working for Red Lobster in senior marketing roles, including communications, menu strategy, and promotions, and restaurant design.

Rachael Kelly-Marcus, Chief Human Resources Officer Rachael brings extensive experience in the operational and human resources fields, having worked in large corporations, small start-ups and medium sized organizations at various stages of business.  Most recently, she worked in senior level HR positions at Cotton Patch Café with over 50 full-service restaurants and VERTS Mediterranean Grill, a fast-casual Mediterranean dining concept.  Her prior experience includes having worked in an array of Senior HR and field operations positions for Sonic Drive-In and 18 years at Pizza Hut.

Joey Stewart, Chief Development Officer Stewart brings more than 20 years of experience in real estate development within the restaurant industry.  Prior to joining Smokey Bones, he served as chief development officer at Cambridge Franchise Holdings for four years where his team grew the Burger King and Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen concepts from 22 restaurants to over 230 restaurants.  Previously he worked for Red Robin Gourmet Burgers as Vice president of real estate and served as director of real estate at O'Charley's.

About Smokey Bones Fire & Grill Smokey Bones Bar & Fire Grill is a full-service restaurant delivering good food, good drinks and good times in 61 locations across 16 states.  Smokey Bones serves lunch, dinner and late night, and has a full-bar featuring more than 40 bourbons and whiskeys, 40+ beers and signature, hand-crafted cocktails.  Its award winning slow-smoked and fire grilled favorites are available for dine-in, pick-up, online ordering and catering delivery.  Smokey Bones, Inc. is an affiliate of Boca Raton, Fla.-based Sun Capital Partners, whose portfolio of restaurants also includes Boston Market, Friendly's, Johnny Rockets, Bar Louie, and other restaurant brands.  For additional information on Smokey Bones Bar & Fire Grill and a list of all locations nationwide, please visit

View source version at Smokey Bones

Daniel Boulud Appoints Sebastien Silvestri As CEO Of The Dinex Group

Set to lead growth through strategic acquisitions, partnerships and brand strategies

Dec 17, 2019, 09:00 ET

NEW YORK, Dec. 17, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The Dinex Group has today announced the appointment of Sebastien Silvestri as its first-ever Chief Executive Officer.  A respected authority in the hospitality industry, Silvestri comes to Chef Daniel Boulud's award-winning restaurant group with more than 25 years of proven experience focused on development of bold marketing strategies, effective partnerships and branding tactics.  In this newly formed position, his focus will be on defining the next era for The Dinex Group's entire collection of restaurants and brands and expanding the brand portfolio through strategic acquisitions.

Silvestri comes from Disruptive Group (a division of sbe), where he served as Chief Operating Officer, overseeing all of the food and beverage operations for venues across the sbe portfolio globally, including culinary concepts, nightlife venues and Umami Burger.  Prior to joining sbe, he was the Vice President of Food & Beverage at The Venetian and The Palazzo Casino Hotel and Resort in Las Vegas. It was there that he met and worked with world renowned chefs including Thomas Keller, Wolfgang Puck, Charlie Trotter, Emeril Lagasse and Daniel Boulud.

Boulud and Silvestri have long had professional admiration for each other, and a friendship over many years.

Said Boulud of the appointment, "With the opening of our new dining concept as well as our fourth Épicerie Boulud both at One Vanderbilt in Fall 2020, the multiple opportunities that have been presented to us for consideration in other parts of the world, our existing portfolio of 19 locations globally and a successful catering business, the time was right to engage the expertise of a veteran industry executive to help both fuel and manage our growth, as well as to ensure the level of excellence within our existing operation. Sebastien has a tremendous track record for assisting some of the most revered hospitality businesses' experience remarkable growth, and I could not be more thrilled to have him by my side as we begin an exciting new era of Daniel Boulud restaurants."

Said Silvestri, "Daniel Boulud is considered a true a pioneer of the revolution and evolution of fine dining and to nurturing emerging talents, and despite the many additions to the list of most celebrated fine dining chefs we see today, Daniel remains one of the most highly-awarded and recognized chefs in America and the world. I am honored to now be working with him so closely. As we look to the future for the group of brands that fall under The Dinex Group, and finalize our plans to move forward with several new hospitality projects with developers in Asia, the Middle East and on the West Coast, we are also looking closely at what's most important to the new generation of gourmands today and determining how that will inform our approach to both our existing dining experiences and new concepts."

About The Dinex Group Founded by Michelin-starred Chef Daniel Boulud, The Dinex Group, LLC is a collection of internationally renowned and highly lauded restaurants with an emphasis on fine dining and cuisine served at the highest level. A culinary innovator and iconic restauranteur, Daniel founded The Dinex Group in 1993 with his eponymous restaurant, Daniel, growing it today to 12 company-owned and seven licensed venues around the world including Daniel in New York City; Café Boulud at The Surrey in New York City, Brazilian Court Hotel in Palm Beach and Four Seasons Hotel in Toronto; Maison Boulud at the Ritz Carlton in Montreal; Bar Boulud in New York City, Mandarin Oriental Boston and Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park in London; Boulud Sud in New York City and the JW Mariott Marquis in Miami, db Bistro Moderne in New York City and at the Marina Bay Sands Resort & Casino in Singapore; DBGB in CityCenterDC in Washington D.C. and three Épicerie Boulud locations throughout New York City. The company additionally operates a commissary kitchen, a catering business and the majority stake in Feast & Fête, one of New York City's premiere catering and events companies.

For more information on Daniel Boulud and all of his properties, please visit

View source version at The Dinex Group

Dunkin' Brands Names Scott Murphy President, Dunkin' Americas

Dana Reid Appointed Vice President, Field Marketing, Dunkin' U.S.

Dec 12, 2019, 16:01 ET

CANTON, Mass., Dec. 12, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Dunkin' Brands, the parent company of Dunkin' and Baskin-Robbins, today announced that Scott Murphy, formerly Dunkin' U.S. Chief Operating Officer, has been promoted to President, Dunkin' Americas. He assumes the role from Dave Hoffmann, who continues to serve as Dunkin' Brands CEO. Additionally, Dana Reid has been promoted to Vice President, Field Marketing, Dunkin' U.S.

Murphy, a 15-year veteran with the company, will have responsibility in his new role for all aspects of operations, restaurant development, franchising, field marketing, supply chain, and consumer packaged goods (CPG) for the approximately 10,000 Dunkin' restaurants in North and South America.

"Scott is a rare leader who is both strategic and impactful. He inspires all who work with him through his vision, attention to detail, and ability to implement change. During his tenure with the company, Scott has earned the respect of his peers, forged strong relationships with franchisees and suppliers, and contributed significantly to the company's success with a strong focus on franchisee profitability. He has also been a key leader in implementing the Blueprint for Growth, our five-year strategic plan for Dunkin' U.S.," said Dave Hoffmann, Dunkin' Brands CEO. "His most recent accomplishments include the rollout of menu simplification, our highly successful espresso relaunch, operational improvements, and the expansion of our NextGen restaurants. I am confident that under Scott's leadership, we will continue to build on our legacy of strong franchisee relations and drive customer noticeable change at Dunkin'."

"I am also pleased to announce the promotion of Dana Reid. Dana is a strong people manager with keen marketing skills and solid franchisee relationships, making her the ideal leader to oversee our field marketing team, which works closely with operations and franchisees to drive sales, traffic and brand loyalty," continued Hoffmann. "With the promotion of these two deserving individuals, I am confident we will better serve our guests, better partner with our franchisees and continue to move the Dunkin' U.S. business forward."

Murphy joined Dunkin' Brands in 2004 as Director, International Supply Chain and became the Vice President of Strategic Supply later that same year. In 2013, he was named Chief Supply Officer & SVP International Operations and was promoted to Senior Vice President of Operations, Dunkin' U.S. & Canada in 2015. He was named Dunkin' U.S. Chief Operating Officer in 2018. Prior to Dunkin', Murphy was with A.T. Kearney, a global management consulting firm. He graduated from Georgetown University with a Bachelor's degree in marketing and international business. He earned his MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management.

Reid joined Dunkin' Brands in 2008 as a Dunkin' U.S. Field Marketing Manager and was promoted to Director in 2017. She became Senior Director for the same division in 2018. Prior to Dunkin', Reid was Vice President, Marketing and Communications, for the Fenway Sports Group. She began her career with MasterCard Worldwide as part of their sponsorships team. Reid earned her Bachelor's degree in sports management from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

About Dunkin' Brands Group, Inc.

With more than 21,000 points of distribution in more than 60 countries worldwide, Dunkin' Brands Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: DNKN) is one of the world's leading franchisors of quick service restaurants (QSR) serving hot and cold coffee and baked goods, as well as hard-serve ice cream. At the end of the third quarter 2019, Dunkin' Brands' 100 percent franchised business model included over 13,000 Dunkin' restaurants and more than 8,000 Baskin-Robbins restaurants. Dunkin' Brands Group, Inc. is headquartered in Canton, Mass.

View source version at Dunkin' Brands

Jack in the Box Inc. Board of Directors Announces Initiation of Succession Planning Process for Chairman and CEO Lenny Comma

December 11, 2019

San Diego, CA  (  The Board of Directors of Jack in the Box Inc. (NASDAQ: JACK) today announced that it has retained Spencer Stuart to assist the company in identifying an individual to succeed its Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Lenny Comma. Although Mr. Comma has not set a specific date to leave the company, he has informed the Board that he believes now is an appropriate time for the company to move forward with identifying a successor with whom Mr. Comma can work on a smooth and efficient transition of leadership. The Board’s search will include both internal and external candidates.

“I’m proud of what the company has been able to accomplish during my tenure as Chairman and CEO,” said Comma. “Since 2014, we’ve sold Qdoba, finished our evolution to an asset-light brand by completing our refranchising efforts, gone through a rigorous strategic alternatives process, completed a very complex $1.3 billion securitization transaction, dramatically strengthened our operations leadership bench, and recently concluded our ninth straight year of system same-store sales growth.” Comma continued, “I’m committed to working with the Board to identify a successor who will continue to grow this exceptional brand, and to working closely with that successor to assure a smooth and successful leadership transition for the company and its stakeholders, including our incredible guests, employees, franchisees, suppliers and, of course, shareholders.”

“Lenny’s positive impact on Jack in the Box and its stakeholders during his 18 years with the company and six years as Chairman and CEO is difficult to overstate,” said Lead Director David Goebel. “We’re happy to be working with Spencer Stuart to identify a leader from both an internal and an external pool of candidates who can work from the strong foundation that Lenny has helped build and take the company to new heights. The Board is grateful for Lenny’s willingness to work with us to assure a seamless transition of his leadership role, and we will proceed diligently to find another world-class leader for the Jack in the Box organization.”

About Jack in the Box Inc.

Jack in the Box Inc. (NASDAQ: JACK), based in San Diego, is a restaurant company that operates and franchises Jack in the Box® restaurants, one of the nation’s largest hamburger chains, with more than 2,200 restaurants in 21 states and Guam. For more information on Jack in the Box, including franchising opportunities, visit

View source version at Jack in the Box

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