About Us

Inspire Brand: $12B in System Sales, 8,300+ Restaurants, 250,000+ Team Members, Top 5 Largest Restaurant Company in the U.S., 16 Countries, 700+ Franchisees

Inspire Brands is a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

Our goal is to build a family of restaurant brands that exhibit high-growth potential and maverick qualities in their market positioning, guest experience, and product offerings. Our brands are diverse, distinctive, and fan favorites. In a sense, you could say we seek those who provide something different than the norm.

By sharing best practices and making deep investments in areas that create advantage for our entire enterprise, Inspire will help its brands grow and succeed.

We believe that when our brands embrace a culture of innovation that complements their individuality, they are unstoppable. How do we do this? By providing the resources they need in order to innovate, grow, and reach unprecedented success. And the results speak for themselves: We’ve proven that we can make sparks fly and step-change growth happen.

We’re different from other restaurant companies, and we’re proud of that. The truth is, conformity doesn’t work for us. What does work for us – and what inspires us – are authentic restaurant brands, built by passionate team members with big dreams, who want to offer memorable experiences that keep guests coming back for more.

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Inspire Brands: Purpose, Vision, Behaviors - graph


Leadership Team


Paul Brown serves as Chief Executive Officer of Inspire Brands, a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

Prior to founding Inspire, Brown was Chief Executive Officer of Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc.

Arby’s drastic turnaround “can be attributed to Brown’s vision and leadership,” according to Fortune. As CEO, he launched several transformative initiatives across the brand’s global system with a focus on innovation, including: introducing a new brand purpose, Inspiring Smiles Through Delicious Experiences®; unveiling a visionary restaurant design that increases energy efficiency; launching a team member training program that is centered on goal setting; and fostering a unique approach to product development that reinforces the brand’s We Have The Meats® marketing.

Under Brown, Arby’s global system sales surged 20% to $3.7 billion, and Arby’s U.S. system restaurants achieved average annual sales that were 22% higher than before Brown arrived. For these efforts, Brown was recognized as the 2018 Norman Award recipient by Nation's Restaurant News, a 2018 Silver Plate honoree by IFMA, the 2017 Restaurant Leader of the Year by Restaurant Business, a 2016 Golden Chain honoree by Nation’s Restaurant News, and a 2016 Entrepreneur of the Year in the Southeast by EY.

Prior to Arby’s, Brown served as President of Brands and Commercial Services of Hilton Worldwide. The global hospitality company is comprised of ten brands including Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, DoubleTree by Hilton, and Embassy Suites Hotels. Brown was the company’s global leader for brand management, product standards, marketing, sales, pricing, e-Commerce, loyalty programs, franchise relations, and information technology.

Brown also previously served with Expedia, Inc., the world’s leading online travel company, as President of Expedia.com and Expedia’s Partner Services Group. Prior to Expedia, Brown was a partner at McKinsey & Company. Based in London, he was a leader of the firm’s global travel and hospitality practice and served clients across the travel, hospitality, and retail sectors. Brown has worked with InterContinental Hotels Group as Senior Vice President of Global Brand Services and was responsible for global sales, reservations, the Priority Club loyalty program, e-Commerce, and purchasing. He was also a Manager for The Boston Consulting Group in the firm’s Chicago and Atlanta offices.

Brown is a member of the board of directors of H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB), J. C. Penney Company, Inc. (NYSE: JCP), and FOCUS Brands, Inc. Brown is also active in the Atlanta community, serving on the boards of the Georgia Tech Foundation, The Woodruff Arts Center, the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, the Buckhead Coalition, the Commerce Club, the Atlanta Police Foundation, and Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.

Brown is an alumnus of Georgia Tech where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in management. He also received an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and a Master of Engineering Management from the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. He is currently a Fellow with the Culinary Institute of America and has served as an executive-in-residence at the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration.

Rob Lynch serves as President of Arby’s, part of the Inspire Brands family of restaurants. Inspire is a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

Under his leadership, Business Insider called Arby’s “one of the fastest growing and most innovative companies in its industry.” Since 2013, Arby’s global system sales have surged 20% to $3.7 billion, and its restaurants' average annual sales have increased 22%.

Lynch was instrumental in establishing Arby’s Analytics Center of Excellence, which helps facilitate more data driven decision making within the organization. He also serves as President of the Arby’s Franchise Association and Chairman of the Arby’s Foundation Board of Directors.

Prior to being named President, Lynch previously served as Chief Marketing Officer and Brand President. In this capacity, Lynch and his team repositioned Arby’s as a Fast Crafted® restaurant brand, spearheaded the launch of the iconic We Have The Meats® marketing platform, and oversaw a product innovation team that tests more than 1,000 potential menu items each year. For these efforts, Lynch was named the 2017 Outstanding Marketer of the Year by PRWeek, the 2017 Content Marketer of the Year by Digiday, a 2016 40 Under 40 honoree from the Atlanta Business Chronicle, and a 2015 Marketer of the Year by AdAge.

Lynch is an alumnus of the University of Rochester where he received a Bachelors of Arts degree in Economics. He also received an MBA from the University’s Simon Business School.

Lyle Tick serves as President of Buffalo Wild Wings, part of the Inspire Brands family of restaurants. Inspire is a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

Prior to joining Buffalo Wild Wings, Tick was Managing Director for Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) beauty brands business in the Americas. At WBA, Tick led the re-organization of the America’s business and established a capabilities program around end to end brand management and commercial management.

Prior to WBA, Tick served as Senior Global Category Director at Bacardi based in London and Vice President of Marketing for North America based in Miami. As Senior Global Category Director, he was responsible for the global Vodka category, the development of a 5-year global strategic plan for the category, and the renovation of the Grey Goose Brand. As Vice President of Marketing for North America, Tick drove the Grey Goose business back into growth reversing a multi-year year negative trend.

Prior to Bacardi, Tick served as in a variety of positions within marketing and advertising agencies, including J. Walter Thompson, Gotham, McGarryBowen, and DDB.

In 2005, Tick was named one of the 20 visionaries in advertising and marketing under the age of 30 by Ad Age.

Tick is an alumnus of the University of Wisconsin.

Claudia San Pedro serves as President of SONIC Drive-In, part of the Inspire Brands family of restaurants. Inspire is a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

San Pedro joined SONIC in 2006 as vice president of investor relations and treasurer. In that role, she directed financial planning, procurement, and investment of funds for the organization, formulated investor relations strategy, and oversaw communications with the investment community. San Pedro was promoted to executive vice president and chief financial officer in 2015, and was responsible for SONIC’s financial planning practices, as well as the brand’s relationship with lending institutions, shareholders, and the financial community.

Prior to joining SONIC, she served as the director for the Oklahoma Office of State Finance (OSF). Appointed by Governor Brad Henry in 2005, San Pedro was the first female and first Hispanic to serve as director of state finance for Oklahoma.

Previously, San Pedro served as the assistant director of the Oklahoma State Senate fiscal staff and a staff budget analyst for the senate appropriations subcommittees on education, human services, and general government.

San Pedro currently serves on the boards of the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, BOK Financial, and the Foundation for Oklahoma City Public Schools.

San Pedro is an alumna of Smith College in Massachusetts. She also received an MBA from the University of Oklahoma.

Tim Murphy serves as President and Managing Director of International for Inspire Brands, a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

As President and Managing Director of International, Murphy is responsible for growing the company’s restaurant footprint beyond the United States. This includes expanding in international markets where Inspire can secure large, multi-unit agreements with high-performing operators.

Prior to Inspire, Murphy was Managing Director of International for Buffalo Wild Wings. A 20-year veteran of the company, he has previously held the positions of Vice President of International, Director Operations Development and Support, and multiple Field Operations roles.

Murphy is an alumnus of Augsburg College in Minneapolis, Minnesota where he received a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management.

David Pipes serves as Chief Financial Officer of Inspire Brands, a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

Prior to Inspire, Pipes was the Chief Financial Officer of Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. (ARG)., where he led all accounting and reporting, tax, financial planning and analysis, treasury, and internal audit functions.

Pipes originally joined Arby’s in 2003 through Arby’s franchisee RTM. Pipes was instrumental in ARG’s acquisition of RTM in 2005, as well as the acquisition of Wendy’s International in 2008, which led to the formation of Wendy’s/Arby’s Group. He has held various other positions in Finance with Arby’s and related companies, including Chief Accounting Officer of ARG, Senior Vice President of Financial Planning and Analysis of ARG, Brand Chief Financial Officer of Wendy’s, Senior Vice President of Financial Planning and Analysis of Wendy’s/Arby’s Group, and Chief Financial Officer of Wendy’s/Arby’s International.

Previously, Pipes was USA Controller of Yum! Brands, Inc. At the company, he also held the position of Director of Planning – International, Chief Financial Officer of Germany, and International Controller among others. Pipes was with PepsiCo immediately prior to Yum! and began his career in public accounting at Coopers & Lybrand.

Pipes serves as the Finance Chair and Treasurer on the board of Georgia CASA, a non-profit organization supporting court appointed special advocates for Georgia children. He is also active in several other philanthropic activities, including his church and the Arby’s Foundation. Pipes is also a past member of the American Diabetes Association board. In 2013, he was awarded Atlanta Business Chronicle’s CFO of the Year award in the Large Private Company category.

Pipes is an alumnus of the University of Texas at Arlington where he received a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting and is a Certified Public Accountant.

Nils H. Okeson serves as General Counsel and Chief Administrative Officer of Inspire Brands, a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

Prior to Inspire, Okeson was General Counsel and Chief Administrative Officer of Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc., where he was responsible for the legal, corporate secretary, risk management, lease management, franchise services, mergers and acquisitions, and administrative services functions.

Okeson joined Arby’s as General Counsel in 2005 and became General Counsel of Arby’s former parent corporation, Triarc Companies in 2007. In these roles, he helped lead the organization through a number of significant M&A and financing transactions as Triarc evolved into a pure play restaurant company eventually combining with Wendy’s International, Inc. to form Wendy’s/ Arby’s Group in 2008. At Wendy’s/Arby’s Group, Okeson served as General Counsel of the parent company and each of the Arby’s and Wendy’s operating companies. Following Roark Capital Group’s acquisition of Arby’s in 2011, Okeson remained with Arby’s as General Counsel while assuming additional senior management responsibilities.

Previously, Okeson was a partner at Alston & Bird LLP in Atlanta, Georgia, where he spent 15 years specializing in corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions, securities regulation, and corporate finance. While at Alston & Bird, Okeson co-chaired the firm’s securities and corporate governance practice quality teams. He was listed in Chambers USA America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, The Best Lawyers in America, and Georgia Super Lawyers. Okeson is a past member of the Advisory Board of the Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance at the University of Delaware. In 2005, he was named a Georgia Rising Star in Atlanta magazine and Georgia Super Lawyers – Rising Stars Edition. In 2015, Okeson was named Outstanding General Counsel by the Atlanta Business Chronicle and the Georgia chapter of the Association of Corporate Counsel.

Okeson is an alumnus of the University of Virginia where he received a Bachelor of Arts, with distinction, majoring in economics and minoring in mathematics. He also received a JD from the University of Virginia School of Law.

Melissa Strait serves as Chief People Officer of Inspire Brands, a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

Prior to Inspire, Strait was the Chief People Officer of Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc., where she led the strategy, development, and execution of human resources, organizational effectiveness programs, and talent management programs across the company. In 2017, Fortune ranked Arby’s as one of the 100 Best Workplaces for Diversity, Women, and Millennials.

Strait began her 30-year career with Arby’s as a front-line team member in Michigan. She previously held positions ranging from Director of Training to Senior Vice President of Human Resources and Leadership Development.

Strait is an alumna of the Hope College where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology.

Christian Charnaux serves as Chief Growth Officer of Inspire Brands, a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

As Chief Growth Officer, Charnaux is responsible for identifying and integrating strategic additions to Inspire’s portfolio as well as developing emerging brands.

Prior to Inspire, Charnaux was with Hilton Worldwide where he served in a number of brand management, commercial services, and finance positions. Most recently, he was Senior Vice President of Corporate Finance where he oversaw Hilton’s Capital Markets, Mergers & Acquisitions, and Investor Relations efforts.

Previously, Charnaux was with the Boston Consulting Group where he focused on the travel and consumer product sectors. He also worked for J.P. Morgan in the Technology coverage and Mergers & Acquisition groups.

Charnaux is an alumnus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he received a Bachelor’s of Arts degree, with Highest Distinction, in History and Political Science and was a Morehead Scholar. He also received an MBA, with Distinction, from Harvard Business School.

Greg Vojnovic serves as Chief Development Officer of Inspire Brands, a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

Prior to Inspire, Vojnovic served as Chief Development Officer of Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc., where he was responsible for franchise and company development, real estate, construction, design, equipment, and franchisee recruitment.

Before joining Arby’s, Vojnovic was Chief Development Officer of Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, where he was responsible for franchise and company development, real estate, construction, design, equipment, and franchisee recruitment.

Previously, Vojnovic held a number of restaurant leadership positions including Vice President of Development at Huddle House and President of Bridgetown Grill Restaurants, a Caribbean- themed concept that received Hot Concept of the Year recognition from Restaurants & Institutions and Chain Leader magazine and more than 40 “Best of Atlanta” awards. Vojnovic was also Senior Director of Franchise Development of Denny’s.

Vojnovic is an active member of the International Franchise Association (IFA). He serves as a Trustee for the IFA Education Foundation and was previously a board member of the VetFran program. Vojnovic is a Gold Medal recipient from the US Chef’s Open.

Vojnovic is an alumnus of Cornell University where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Hotel Administration from the Statler School of Hotel Administration.

Darla Morse serves as Chief Information Officer of Inspire Brands, a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

Morse previously served as the Chief Information Officer for Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc., where she was responsible for leading technology initiatives with the objective of continuing to enhance the restaurant experience for guests while driving operational efficiencies.

Prior to joining Arby’s, Morse was Chief Information Officer of SeaWorld where she led the technology teams supporting SeaWorld’s corporate headquarters and 12 parks. During her tenure at SeaWorld, Morse drove a number of industry-leading innovations including an enterprise mobile application for managing park wait times, providing guest information, and other key functionalities including food pre-order capability and mobile wallet for one-touch purchasing.

Before joining SeaWorld, Morse was with Walt Disney World Resorts for more than 17 years where she held a variety of technology roles. She was a member of the team that developed Disney’s wristband, allowing the company to provide personalized offers to park and hotel guests, shift demand within the park, and use mobile technology to increase revenue.

Morse is an alumna of Florida Southern College where she received a Bachelor of Computer Science. She also received an MBA in Management Information Systems from Webster University.

Christopher Fuller serves as Head of Communications for Inspire Brands, a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 8,300 Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, SONIC Drive-In, and Rusty Taco locations worldwide.

Prior to Inspire, Fuller served as Senior Vice President of Communications for Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. At Arby’s, Fuller oversaw all communications for the brand, including the $2.9 billion acquisition of Buffalo Wild Wings; the transition from Pepsi to Coca-Cola beverages across all 3,400 restaurants; Arby’s partnerships with the PGA TOUR and ELEAGUE; and many of the brand’s award-winning marketing moments such as its engagement with Jon Stewart and the launch of the Vegetarian Support Hotline.

Fuller also served as the Executive Director of the Arby’s Foundation, the independent, charitable arm of Arby’s. During his tenure as Executive Director, the Foundation raised more than $25M through its National Restaurant Fundraiser and Partner Program. He also led expansion of the Foundation’s vision to include youth empowerment and career readiness, in addition to furthering its longstanding commitment to ending childhood hunger.

Prior to Arby’s, Fuller led Global Public Affairs for Yum! Brands. He has nearly 20 years of communications, PR, and government relations experience at large restaurant brands, global PR agencies, and the United States Congress.

Fuller was named the 2010 PR Professional of the Year by PR News and 40 under 40 by PR Week. He was formerly a member of the Board of Trustees for the Ron Clark Academy in Atlanta, as well as a member of the Communications Council of the Boy Scouts of America. He serves on the Leadership Council and Dine Out Advisory Council for Share Our Strength.

Fuller is an alumnus of West Texas A&M University where he received a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications. He also received an MBA from the University of Dallas.


Board of Directors


Paul Brown

CO-FOUNDER & CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, INSPIRE BRANDS

Neal Aronson

CO-FOUNDER, INSPIRE BRANDS

FOUNDER & MANAGING PARTNER, ROARK

Jon Luther

Former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Dunkin’ Brands

Erik Morris

Co-Chief Investment Officer & Senior Managing Director, Roark

Steve Romaniello

Managing Director, Roark

Marc Rosen

EVP & President of Global Ecommerce, Levi Strauss & Co

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