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Breakout Session / Monday / October 9, 2023 / 3:30 PM

Using Restaurant Design Trends to Streamline Operations

It’s tempting to rebrand or plan redesigns when you see the competition rolling out new logos, equipment and service models, but redesigns work best when done in tandem with operations teams.

This session will feature brands that have tested prototypes or remodeled in an effort to speed up service and enhance the customer experience.


Frances Allen | President & CEO | Checkers Drive-In Restaurants
Frances Allen joined Checkers Drive-In Restaurants, Inc. as President and CEO in February of 2020. Ms. Allen brought to Checkers & Rally’s a history of success in the restaurant industry and deep expertise across brand strategy, menu and marketing, franchising, restaurant technology and operations, among other disciplines. In her former role as CEO of Boston Market, Ms. Allen implemented a multi-faceted transformation plan setting up the brand for future growth. Prior to Boston Market, Ms. Allen served as President of Jack-in-the-Box from 2014 to 2018, generating superior results and upgrading the quality of the menu. Allen’s prior leadership experience includes successful tenures as Chief Brand Officer and Chief Marketing Officer at Denny’s Corporation, and as Chief Marketing Officer of Dunkin’ Donuts USA.
Max Sheets | Founder & CEO | Chick N Max
No stranger to the restaurant industry, Max Sheets got his start as a teenager scraping cheese off pans in a Pizza Hut kitchen. In the early 2000s – after having already spent 23 years in real estate and development for such brands as Lone Star Steakhouse and Saloon, Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, Smashburger and Ted’s Montana Grill – he began mulling over the idea of a franchise concept that would accommodate the ever growing movement towards red meat alternatives. In 2017, he founded Chick N Max, a next generation fast casual franchise specializing in almond wood smoked chicken and wings, chef-crafted sandwiches and golden fried tenders.
Susan Taylor | President & CEO | Juice It Up!
Susan Taylor is the President and CEO of Juice It Up! and possesses nearly 30 years of restaurant industry leadership experience. Propelled by her extraordinary vision, guidance and commitment to helping franchise owners succeed, Juice It Up! is experiencing record sales as the brand continues to take more ownership of the ever-popular smoothie, bowl, and raw juice segment. A dynamic, people-oriented brand builder, Susan has made huge contributions in furthering the evolution of the brand and taking Juice It Up! to new heights. Leading her team through the many challenges of the past few years to emerge stronger than ever, Susan is instrumental to Juice It Up!’s success.

Thomas Brooks | Chief Revenue Officer | Kitchen Brains
Thomas Brooks is a seasoned executive with an extensive background in driving growth and innovation across diverse industries. With over two decades of experience spanning private equity and the public sector, Thomas brings his strategic leadership to the role of Chief Revenue Officer (CRO) at Kitchen Brains, a technology solutions company specializing in kitchen controls and enterprise software. As CRO, Thomas spearheads Kitchen Brains' revenue generation strategies, solidifying the company's market presence and nurturing relationships within the food services industry. With a track record of collaborating he is leading Operators and Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) to merge hardware and software capabilities delivering enterprise-level solutions for commercial kitchens. This approach leverages his in-depth understanding of enterprise solution intricacies, allowing Kitchen Brains to offer comprehensive solutions addressing the multifaceted challenges of the culinary world.
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