Smashburger and Rock and Roll Sushi name new executives

Executive Summary: A roundup of high-level hirings and promotions in the restaurant business includes changes for Cousins Maine Lobster and Caseys.
Jan Barnett Rock n Roll Sushi
Jan Barnett, Rock N Roll Sushi / Photo courtesy of Rock N Roll Sushi

Executive Summary

Rock N Roll Sushi has named Jan Barnett to the role of CMO. Barnett was previously CMO for Another Broken Egg Café, and before that, vice president of marketing at The Egg & I. She also spent two decades working with McDonald’s, and 10 years with Taco Bell.

“Jan joining the Rock N Roll Sushi team provides us a unique opportunity to add to the brand’s continued growth and success,” said CEO Chris Kramolis in a statement. “Our goal is to further position Rock N Roll Sushi as a leader in the Asian fusion category, leveraging innovative marketing strategies, engaging digital experiences, and strategic partnerships.”

Founded in 2010, Rock N Roll Sushi has more than 50 units across the Southeast.

Smashburger on Friday said Jose Miñana Jr. will step in as interim president to replace Carl Bachmann, who is departing the fast-casual chain on June 30 to become CEO of BurgerFi.

Miñana is the chief sustainability and public affairs officer for Smashburger’s parent company Jollibee Foods Corp., and will serve until a permanent president is found, the company said. Bachmann is scheduled to take leadership of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based BurgerFi and Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza on July 10.

With 25 years of experience working for Jollibee, Miñana has served in his current role since 2019. Before that, he was group president for Jollibee’s business across North America, and he led business development for the company’s restaurant brands in Vietnam and the Philippines.

Cousins Maine Lobster has appointed Angela Coppler as the company’s first head of development. The appointment will bolster growth of the chain’s food truck and brick-and-mortar business, according to a press release. Coppler comes to the lobster chain from Wendy’s where she led strategic development, franchise development and recruitment in the United States, Canada and abroad.

"Angela brings an incredible skill set ranging from real estate to brand strategy, and financial acumen to talent development to our Cousins Maine Lobster system. Her leadership and expertise are critical for us as we are focused on responsibly expanding the brand. We are thrilled to have her on board," said Jim Tselikis, Cousins Maine Lobster’s cofounder, in a statement.

Caseys has appointed the company’s current present and CEO, Darren Rebelez, to the additional role of Board Chair. The Board also unanimously elected Judy Schmeling, a director of the company, to the role of lead independent director.

“On behalf of the Board, we are pleased to appoint Darren as Board Chair, in addition to his continuing role as President and CEO,” said Mr. Horak. “Darren has made a significant impact on the Company since he joined in 2019 and the Board believes his strategic vision and proven leadership capabilities make him the right person to lead the Company into the future. The Board is also pleased that Judy, with her decades of leadership both as an executive and in the boardroom, has stepped into the role of Lead Independent Director.”

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