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.
After nearly a five-month search, Red Robin offered Noodles & Company Executive Chairman Paul J. B. Murphy III the role of CEO. His experience in brand transformation, as well as a board refresh, could help the company find a path to sustainable same-store sales growth.
Check out other executive changes below:
Smoothie King: Chief Operating Officer Dan Harmon has been promoted to president and COO, according to a press release. In his expanded role, he will oversee all marketing and IT functions of the 1,000-plus unit chain. Cheif Development Officer Keven King was promoted to chief business development officer while chief marketing officer Rebecca Miller has become head of field marketing. In his new role, King will lead growth opportunities as the company considers strategic partnerships within the health and fitness space and acquisitions of complementary brands. Miller's new role will include her continued marketing leadership and expertise to meet franchisee and field team needs while aligning resources.
Red Robin: The casual dining chain hired Paul J.B. Murphy III, executive chairman at Noodles & Company, as its CEO, effective Oct. 3. He will replace interim CEO Pattye Moore, who will retire. Moore took the role after Denny Marie Post retired from the chief executive post in April. Prior to his position at Noodles & Company, Murphy spent eight years at Del Taco as CEO and held several positions at Einstein Noah Restaurant Group.
Moe's Southwest Grill: Erik Hess joins the restaurant chain as president, overseeing franchise and company operations, marketing, supply chain and product innovation, according to a press release. He previously spent 25 years at McDonald’s in several different leadership roles, where his responsibilities included product development, customer experience innovation, strategy and insights and restaurant development. During the last two years, he consulted with several brands and financial service organizations on consumer strategy and restaurant opportunities.
Bojangles': Reese Stewart has been hired as chief financial officer after serving as senior vice president of finance and chief accounting officer at CKE Restaurants. While at CKE, he created and oversaw financial teams that supported domestic and international growth of both Carl's Jr. and Hardee's brands. He was also instrumental in several strategic and capital transactions and oversaw the financial transaction from public to private ownership.
Fazoli's: The Italian QSR chain promoted three of its executives. Jodie Conrad is now chief marketing officer from vice president of marketing. She has been with the company since 2016 and has three decades of marketing experience, including roles at Wendy’s, Donatos Pizza, Coca-Cola and Pillsbury. Blaine Adams was promoted to senior vice president of supply chain and quality assurance. He joined the chain in 2013 after 23 years at Darden Restaurants. Wayne Pederson was promoted to vice president of information technology. He started working at the restaurant in 2016 as executive director of information technology after holding positions at Yum Brands, Domino’s and Bloomin' Brands.