“Bill Long joined Snooze three years ago and had an immediate impact on both our business and the Denver community,” says CEO David Birzon. While Birzon knew Long would bring value as an excellent “finance guy,” he didn’t know his people skills would transform the organization. “In all my years working with executives at the C-level, I have never met someone with Bill’s ability to balance the needs of the business with the needs of both our people and the communities in which we operate. Bill’s ability to naturally lead and mentor is only rivaled by his belief that his role as an executive is to help everyone around him reach their fullest potential,” Birzon says.

“Over the years, I have worked with many young leaders and often times the trait most difficult to teach is that of being humble and putting the needs of others above the needs of oneself. … Bill’s innate leadership style is one of selflessness and thoughtfulness toward others. I knew that Bill was special and unique for his age from his very first months at Snooze in the way he inspired people to think about themselves and their own journeys as emerging leaders. In the 30 years that I have been in the business, I would unequivocally say that the hallmark of real leadership is the ability and commitment to develop the people that work for you. Bill has proven himself a true leader at Snooze by constantly mentoring, developing and teaching those around him to the point where they have had not only great success in their roles but have moved on to high positions within Snooze,” he says.

One of the mandates as Snooze is to engage with the community, and Long has done just that by working with businesses, schools and community groups in the markets where Snooze is located. “At Snooze, everyone is driven by a higher purpose,” says Long. “It is energizing to walk into work each day surrounded by people so passionate about taking care of our guests, our communities and our planet. That energy, combined with our high growth rate, makes Snooze the most exciting place to grow and develop in the restaurant industry today.”

Birzon adds that Long has made a name for himself as a proven leader within the business community, serving as a go-to resource for counterparts in the industry looking to evaluate new technologies, build their teams or gut-check their strategies. “His functional expertise is well beyond his years,” says Birzon.