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Whataburger Looks Within to Fill CEO Role

Whataburger promoted Ed Nelson to CEO from president.

A 16-year veteran of the restaurant chain, Nelson was named president of Whataburger in July 2019. He assumed that role during a transitional period for the burger chain, as Chicago-based merchant bank BDT Capital Partners acquired Whataburger in June 2019. Prior to the deal, Nelson served as Whataburger’s chief financial officer.

The past year has been a busy one for the 70-year-old Whataburger. During that time Whataburger has launched curbside and delivery service across its 10-state footprint; introduced 3 limited-time offer burgers; built 7 new restaurants, with 9 more planned by the end of year; unveiled new restaurant designs; built a new restaurant prototype and announced plans to begin franchising for the first time in 20 years, per a company release.