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Checkers tweaks management team

TAMPA Fla. Checkers Drive-In Restaurants Inc. said it has reorganized its executive management team to better supports its restaurants and franchisees and prepare for growth.

Checkers appointed Todd Lindsey senior vice president and chief financial officer, replacing Janette McDugald, who left the company in December. Lindsey most recently was CFO of Michaels Stores Inc.'s Specialty Retail Group. In addition, he has held roles at Gaylord Resorts, Hard Rock CafŽ International, Darden Restaurants and TCBY Systems. 

Wendy’s veteran Robert D. Wright was named executive vice president of company and franchise operations, a new post, the company said. Wright previously spent nine years in leadership roles at Wendy’s. He also has worked for Domino's and is a former franchisee of the pizza chain.

Checkers also named Michael Arrowsmith senior vice president of development, another new position, which the company says it created to assist it in its expansion plans.  Arrowsmith most recently was vice president of franchise development at Gloria Jean’s Gourmet Coffee. His resume also includes positions with Denny’s, Shoney’s and National Franchise Sales.  

Checkers also promoted Wendy Harkness to vice president of human resources, replacing Steve Cohen, who retired last June.  Harkness previously was director of employee relations.

“Organizational changes were carefully made in key areas that will further strengthen the company for the long term and provide the necessary foundation to grow in this highly competitive and changing business environment,” Rick Silva, president and chief executive of Checkers, said in a statement.  “Over the past year, we worked diligently to assemble a team of extraordinarily seasoned executives from some of the industry’s largest brands.  Our ability to recruit this quality of talent is a testament to the power and bright future of our brand.”  

Silva, formerly of Burger King, was named president and CEO of Checkers in February 2007.

Checkers Drive-In Restaurants Inc. is the parent company of the Checkers and Rally’s Hamburgers twin-lane drive-thru concepts.  The company, which generated $649 million in annual systemwide sales in 2006, was acquired by Wellspring Capital Management LLC in June of 2006.

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