Fast-casual restaurant company BurgerFi International Inc. on Monday announced the addition of four people to its executive team: chief people officer Michelle Zavolta, chief development officer Ron Biskin, chief legal officer and corporate secretary Stefan Schnopp and senior vice president of marketing Nadia Cronk.
The executives will work across BurgerFi’s portfolio, including Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza & Wings, which the company acquired in 2021.
“Continuing the momentum we had in 2021, we are building a multibrand-platform powerhouse to kick off the new year and having the right talent in place is a critical step to achieve that goal,” said Ophir Sternberg, executive chairman of BurgerFi, in a company release. “As part of continued evolution, putting a shared leadership structure in place across the BurgerFi portfolio creates strong efficiencies, builds our culture and deepens the opportunities that will fuel our aggressive growth.”
North Palm Beach, Fla.-based BurgerFi completed its acquisition of Anthony’s, which has 61 units along the east coast, in October, in addition to the 116 BurgerFi units nationwide.
“This group of senior team members bring the perfect combination of demonstrated success and a fresh perspective,” said Ian Baines, CEO of BurgerFi. “We are thrilled to welcome their ideas, passion and contributions, all of which will certainly be key pieces in building BurgerFi’s next chapter.”
Zavolta joins the C-suite from Anthony’s, where she held the same title. She also previously worked for Logan’s Roadhouse. Her responsibilities will include advising C-suite executives, developing key team members and focuisng on diversity and inclusion efforts.
“The pandemic made us pause and reflect on the need to create a value proposition beyond compensation,” Zavolta said in the release. “Thought leaders are redefining the typical team member profile, and it begins by paying attention to the shifts that have occurred while continuing to evolve.”
Biskin previously served in various C-level roles at brands including TGI Fridays, Burger King, Baja Fresh and Wolfgang Puck, where he developed a new bistro concept. At BurgerFi, he will lead restaurant development, real estate and growth.
“Passion and commitment for quality, fresh ingredients and innovation are at the core of BurgerFi and Anthony’s offerings and mirror my own values,” he said in the release. “Signing new restaurants in key markets will be critical in achieving our development goals, and I’m looking forward to helping propel us ahead.”
Schnopp joins BurgerFi from Sprint Corporation, where as vice president and corporate secretary he assisted with the merger with T-Mobile and was the lead financing lawyer, raising over $60 billion in capital during his tenure. At BurgerFi, he will advise the executive team and board on legal matters including corporate governance, financing transactions, disclosures, mergers and acquisitions, litigation, commercial and compliance.
“I look forward to becoming part of a company with such an impressive story and to contribute to its rapid expansion,” Schnopp said in the release. “Although BurgerFi has already done so much for the fast-casual dining industry, I believe the company’s greatest accomplishments lie ahead.”
Cronk most recently led marketing for Anthony’s, where she developed programs to increase brand awareness, acquisition and retention, and has experience with Bloomin’ Brands and Fortune 500 companies.
“I’m delighted to join forces with the BurgerFi International family,” Cronk said in the release. “As many of us know, BurgerFi International and its collection of brands are leaders in the fast-casual dining industry and there is opportunity to leverage data and drive purposeful impact as we strengthen the overall guest experience.”
BurgerFi also released a business update and initial 2022 guidance on Monday ahead of its Tuesday virtual fireside chat at the ICR conference.
Contact Leigh Anne Zinsmeister at [email protected]