This is the latest installment in a series that highlights major executive changes at top fast casual, QSR and casual dining chains over the past week.
Brands undergoing turnarounds, namely Red Robin and Subway, have been particularly active in finding and hiring new executives this year. Subway hired four new executives in various positions, namely Carrie Walsh as chief marketing officer, this week, just months after it named a new CIO, chief brand and innovation officer, director of convenience innovation and senior corporate executive chef. Red Robin named a new board chair two months after it appointed three new, independent board members and a month after it hired a new CEO. New executives could be key to bringing back positive same-store growth for both of these brands.
Check out additional leadership announcements below:
Dunkin' Brands: Pancho Gonzalez is the company’s new regional vice president, Latin America and Caribbean, according to a press release. He will be responsible for growing both Dunkin' and Baskin-Robbins in the region. Gonzalez has over 25 years of experience at McDonald's, where he held various positions.
Taco Bell: Kelly McCulloch will replace Frank Tucker as the QSR chain's global chief people officer, following Tucker’s Jan. 1 retirement, according to Nation's Restaurant News. McCulloch currently served as chief people officer at Pizza Hut. Tucker has been with Taco Bell since 1993 as vice president of restaurant excellence. McCulloch joined Yum Brands 14 years ago as talent leader for Pizza Hut. Cristi Lockett, who works at KFC Global Division, will replace McCulloch at Pizza Hut.
Subway: The sandwich chain named the following four individuals to executive positions: Carrie Walsh to chief marketing officer, Robin Seward to SVP of marketing strategy and planning, Aidan Hay to VP of North American operations and Bill McCane to VP of global development, according to a press release. Walsh has over 15 years of experience in marketing and most recently led marketing for Michaels Stores. She also served as CMO for Pizza Hut and worked at PepsiCo. Seward previously served as CMO for Schlotzky's Austin Eatery and Rita’s Italian Ice. Prior to Subway. Hay served as SVP of U.S. company operations for The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf and as general manager and VP of global operations for Pizza Hut’s delivery program.
Tim Hortons: Axel Schwan was promoted to regional president of the chain's U.S. and Canada business, according to Restaurant Business. Schwan previously served as global chief marketing officer at Tim Hortons. He joined parent company Restaurant Brands International in 2011 as marketing director for Burger King in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
Good Times Restaurants: CEO Boyd Hoback resigned from his executive position as well as from the company’s board of directors, according to a press release. He will be replaced by Ryan Zink, the company's chief financial officer, who will serve as acting CEO. Zink will be considered a candidate for a permanent CEO position and will remain as CFO until a permanent CEO is named.
Red Robin: David A. Pace will become the company’s board chair effective Nov. 1, according to a press release. He was appointed to the board on Aug. 6. as part of the company's board refresh, which included the addition of three other independent directors. Pace previously served as CEO of Jamba. He has over 30 years of leadership and turnaround experience across multiple industries, including food, beverage and retail. Pace will replace retiring board chair Pattye Moore, who will leave the company at the end of the year.