September 25, 2013
The Passing of Fritzi Woods
Fritzi Woods, president and chief executive officer of the Women’s Foodservice Forum (WFF) died unexpectedly on Sept. 18, 2013. At this time, there is no further information available about Woods’ death or funeral arrangements.
Tin Dum Asiacafé Bolsters Management Team
Tin Drum Asiacafé, a Georgia-based fast-casual restaurant chain, named former Arby’s veterans Ray Biondi and Joe Ippolito as chief operating officer and vice president of operations, respectively.
Mercer Cutlery Carves Out New Home
Mercer Cutlery moved its corporate headquarters to Ronkonkoma from Deer Park, N.Y. This move does not impact the Mercer West distribution facility in Fullerton, Calif.
NRAEF Seeks Nominations for Awards Programs
The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) announced it is accepting nominations for its 2014 “Restaurant Neighbor” and “Faces of Diversity” awards.
McAlister’s Creates New Development Post
Fast-casual restaurant chain McAlister’s Deli appointed Jeff Sturgis to its newly created role of chief development officer. In his new role Sturgis will oversee such functions as franchise sales, real estate, store design and construction.
FE&S’ 2014 Tabletop Awards: Call for Entries
FE&S is now accepting submissions for its 2014 Tabletop Awards, which recognizes excellence in the strategic and functional application of permanent tableware in five categories.
U.S. Restaurant Traffic Modestly Increases in Q2 2013
U.S. restaurant traffic increased by 1 percent in the second quarter of 2013 while consumer spending, driven primarily by average check growth, increased by 3 percent, according to The NPD Group, a global information company.
Darden Unveils Leadership Succession Plan
Drew Madsen, president and chief operating officer of Darden Restaurants, announced his retirement at the end of the company’s fiscal second quarter. Gene Lee, who serves as president of Darden’s Specialty Restaurant Group, succeeds Madsen effective immediately.
HLC Welcomes Back Drake
Mary Ellen Drake has returned to the Homer Laughlin China Company as a Western regional sales manager, a position she previously held from July 1993 through January 2005.
Pret A Manger Names Naylor to Lead U.S. Operations
Pret A Manger, a London-based quick-serve restaurant and coffee shop, named Robert Naylor the new president of its U.S. operations. A 30-year veteran of the retail industry, Naylor comes to Pret A Manger from Starbucks where he oversaw operations in Asia Pacific and France.
This Week in Foodservice: Chili’s Rolls Out Tablets, Federal Reserve Blinks
A casual dining chain makes an electronic leap, the Federal Reserve votes no confidence for the economy, Tim Horton’s plans substantial changes, second quarter restaurant traffic and more.
Babila Becomes President of Carpigiani USA
Carpigiani USA, part of the Ali Group, promoted John Babila to president from executive vice president of sales and marketing, a position he has held since joining Carpigiani USA in April 2011.