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Valerie Daniels-Carter, president and CEO, V&J Holdings Inc.
Valerie Daniels-Carter has spent her career blazing new trails.
The president and CEO of Milwaukee-based V&J Holdings, Daniels-Carter is at the helm of one of the largest minority-owned restaurant businesses in the country, and the largest woman-owned restaurant franchise company.
“Even as a child I had an entrepreneurial spirit,” Daniels-Carter recently said in an interview on the website of Northwestern Mutual, which dubbed her “America’s Franchise Queen.”
Since opening her first Burger King franchise with her brother, John Daniels, in 1982, Daniels-Carter has continued to expand and diversify. She most recently added Captain D’s Seafood Kitchen to her roster of restaurant brands, introducing the concept to Milwaukee in 2018. Other brands under the V&J umbrella include Pizza Hut, The Coffee Beanery, Häagen-Dazs, Auntie Anne’s, MyYoMy Frozen Yogurt and Nino’s Southern Sides.
Daniels-Carter has been recognized repeatedly for her leadership and community involvement. Last year she was named 2018 Business Champion by the African American Chamber of Commerce of Wisconsin.
In the Northwestern Mutual interview, Daniels-Carter encouraged would-be entrepreneurs to identify what “drives their passion.”
“People say I’m in the food business, but it’s really the people business,” she said. “I want to serve people and see them enjoying their experience.”