O’Charley’s has named Mickey Mills its next president.
Mills had previously served as vice president for operations at O’Charleys, a 213-unit casual-dining chain owned by American Blue Ribbon Holdings LLC. She had been with the Nashville, Tenn.-based chain since 2010.
Mills replaces American Blue Ribbon Holdings chief executive Hazem Ouf, who served as acting president of O’Charley’s in 2012. Before joining O’Charley’s, Mills worked for the Buca di Beppo casual-dining concept for nearly 20 years.
“Mickey is a strong leader and has done a terrific job as we’ve implemented many positive changes in our restaurants,” Ouf said.
In her new role, Mills will oversee the company’s revitalization effort. The changes, which began in 2012, will focus on improving guest experiences by upgrading restaurant design and menus.
“We are focusing on the guest experience, with eye-catching and inviting exteriors,” she said in an email. “We’ve freshened our brand mark and evaluated every element of our service platform. We’ve introduced a new menu that includes unique takes on unmistakably American items and Southern favorites.”
The updated menu includes a honey-drizzled Southern fried chicken, crispy pickle chips and a homestyle pot roast dinner. “We’ve already had wonderful reaction from O’Charley’s fans and customers in areas where the upgrade has been completed,” she added.
In November, O’Charley’s revealed the revamped restaurant model at its Franklin, Tenn., location. At the time, Ouf said part of the reason for the change was, in part, to attract more franchisees and to expand the O’Charley’s brand.
The revitalization plan will be rolled out throughout 2013 and the beginning of 2014.
“O’Charley’s needed a revitalized look and feel,” Ouf told Nation’s Restaurant News at the time. “It’s very important for us to ensure that this concept is heading in the right direction.”