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From left, Adam Smith, Grant Power, and Michelle Bythewood

Michelle Bythewood joins Nation’s Giant Hamburgers as the chain starts franchising

The former Salata Salad Kitchen president to report to CEO Adam Smith

Michelle Bythewood has been named president of Nation’s Giant Hamburgers as the 29-unit chain gears up for franchising, the chain based in El Cerrito, Calif., said Thursday.

The chain was founded in 1952 by Russ Harvey in San Pablo, Calif., and now serves all-day breakfast, sandwiches, hot dogs, shakes, and pies. It’s now headed up by Grant Power, the son of Dale Power, who was Harvey’s original partner. He hired Adam Smith, former senior vice president of legal an external affairs at California Resources, an independent energy company, as CEO in June of last year.

In a release announcing her appointment and the plans to franchise, Power said he had been working to prepare the concept for franchising since he was hired.

The one piece of the puzzle that we needed to fill was finding a brand president, and for that we wanted the best in the business. That’s when we reached out to Michelle,” he said.

Power said he approved of the decision. 

“After meeting with Michelle we knew immediately she was the right person for the job based on her vision for the future of the brand, and comprehensive experience with taking brands to the next level as they prepare to grow,” he said.

Bythewood had been president of Salata Salad Kitchen since 2019, during which time expanded the number of locations of the Houston-based chain by 30%.

“My passion is rebranding companies and putting systems and processes in place for growth and franchisee expansion,” she said in the release. “The Nation’s Giant Hamburgers brand is steeped in history and beloved by the communities it's in, so when presented the opportunity to grow the brand, I decided the time was right to make a move. My goal is to make the brand relevant to new communities while preserving the heart and soul of what makes the concept so special.”

Nation’s said it was now looking for franchisees in California and plans to explore new markets in 2024.

Contact Bret Thorn at [email protected] 

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