With the start of the second month of 2018, 800 Degrees Pizzeria has announced a newly assembled executive team focused on the chain's growth. In January, the concept installed not only chief officers for the chain itself, but also leaders for marketing, development and human resources.
Tommy Lee, former CEO of Dallas-based Rockfish Seafood Grill is now CEO of 800 Degrees. The 25-year veteran of foodservice brands led Rockfish through a turnaround and brand reimage, and subsequent resumption of unit growth. Previously, he held executive positions at Brinker International, parent company of Chili's and On the Border.
Lee will be assisted by the new CMO at 800 Degrees, Thomas Bartsch, who previously held leadership roles at MidiCi, Focus Brands, DineEquity, Dunkin Brands, Burger King Corp. and Nestle.
Last year, the chain brought on Chief People Officer Samara Friedman, who previously served as vice president of training and development at Levity Entertainment Group, operator of The Improv comedy club franchise.
Lee, Bartsch and Friedman join co-founder and chef Anthony Carron; chief development officer Scott Berkowitz and vice president of international franchise Chris Rich to round out the leadership team at the pizza chain, which identifies itself as "fast fine" dining.
"We have formed an extremely talented and accomplished executive team that are ready to lead the strategic growth and future direction of the brand," Carron said in the release. "With the team's deep industry knowledge and combined track record for success, I am confident that they will elevate the brand, keeping all the aspects of 800 Degrees that our loyal customers love, while adding a broader appeal that will attract new guests."
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