Mark Crumpacker is officially back as chief creative and development officer of Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc., after being placed on administrative leave following an indictment on drug possession charges in June, executives confirmed Friday.
Chris Arnold, the Denver-based company’s communications director, said Crumpacker’s return was announced internally on Sept. 8.
“After careful consideration and review, we’ve learned that any mistake Mark may have made in his personal life was not related to, nor did it affect, his work,” Arnold said in a statement. “In the eight years that he has been with Chipotle, he has been an extremely valuable member of our leadership team and contributed greatly to Chipotle’s success.”
Arnold added that Crumpacker voluntarily completed a rehabilitation program while on leave, and that “he is excited to get back to work at the company he loves.”
According to the Associated Press, Crumpacker’s case is still open. He is scheduled to appear in court on Oct. 18.
Crumpacker was arraigned on seven misdemeanor counts related to the purchase of cocaine and other controlled substances between January and May of this year, a time when Chipotle was grappling with the aftermath of a series of foodborne illness events last year that sent sales and the company’s stock price plunging.
Chipotle has slowly regained some traffic with the help of marketing efforts that have included freebies and buy-one-get-one offers, a summer loyalty program, animated short films to refocus customers on quality ingredients, and the rollout of chorizo as a new protein option.
The past few months have been personally challenging for Crumpacker, “but he has remained committed to doing what is best for Chipotle,” Arnold said. “Our executive team and board of directors believe that having Mark continue to lead our marketing and development efforts is what is best for our company, our employees, our investors and our future.”