Former Earl of Sandwich executive becomes CEO for the emerging fast-casual chain.

Fast-casual concept Veggie Grill introduced Steve Heeley as the restaurant chain's new chief operating officer. Heeley joins Veggie Grill from Florida-based Earl of Sandwich where he was CEO.

Heely's restaurant industry background also includes working with such fast-casual concepts as Au Bon Pain and Baja Fresh.

In his new role, Heely is charged with leading Veggie Grill's expansion outside of its traditional California and West Coast markets.