Industry News | March 15, 2013

Pair of Industry Vets Join El Pollo Loco's Exec Team

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El Pollo Loco announced the appointment of Richard Pineda as vice president of supply chain management and Jeff Little as vice president of development, effective immediately.

Both Pineda and Little join the grilled chicken restaurant chain with more than 20 years of experience in their respective fields and in the restaurant industry.

"We are so thrilled to have Richard and Jeff on board and welcome them to the El Pollo Loco team," says Steve Sather, president and CEO, El Pollo Loco. "These high-caliber executives join the brand at an exciting time. Undoubtedly, their leadership will help El Pollo Loco continue to grow and take the brand to new heights."

In the role of vice president, supply chain management, Pineda will report directly to Sather and will manage the entire supply chain for El Pollo Loco, including logistics and distribution for company and franchise restaurants.

Pineda is also responsible for non-food spend categories, including supplies, uniforms, and natural gas.

"El Pollo Loco is an extraordinary brand, and I am so honored to work alongside this remarkable group of executives, franchisees, and suppliers to help ensure a continuous supply of the freshest ingredients to our restaurants," Pineda says.

Before joining El Pollo Loco, Pineda served as vice president of purchasing and supply chain for Sizzler USA. He previously worked in the same role for McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurants.

Pineda also served as senior vice president of purchasing and supply chain at Kahala, Corp., whose brands include Cold Stone Creamery, Blimpie, and Taco Time, among others.

In his new role as vice president of development, Little will oversee real estate location selection, construction project management, and overall project design for the company's nearly 400 restaurants.

He will report directly to Dennis Farrow, El Pollo Loco's chief operating officer.

"I've always appreciated El Pollo Loco's iconic presence in Southern California," Little says. "I'm honored to be a part of this team as we elevate the brand building great new restaurants and through our comprehensive remodel program."

Little previously worked at Yum! Brands, where he served as national director, Taco Bell development. In this role, Little directed real estate and construction of company development across the western U.S.

Prior to that position, Little served as national director of Yum! Brands construction.

Both Pineda and Little will serve as members of the El Pollo Loco management team and will operate out of the company's Costa Mesa, California, office.