Ballard Brands, a hospitality and food service business that owns, operates and manages restaurants as well as food and beverage concepts, has announced William “Bill” DiPaola will be joining its ranks as Chief Operating Officer (COO) and Leslie Monson as Chief Marketing Officer (CMO). Their entrance comes at an exciting time for the corporation as it celebrates significant growth milestones and the expansion of its restaurant portfolio.
With over 25 years of experience in the hospitality industry, DiPaola brings with him vast knowledge from top-tier restaurant chains and franchises including time as the Vice President of Development at Rotolo’s Pizzeria and president & COO of Dat Dog. His extraordinary experience in the restaurant industry also includes high-level management roles both at Slice Pizzeria and Ruth’s Chris Steak House. DiPaola’s new role and responsibilities as COO will hone in on growing and developing companies within Ballard Brands, while ensuring franchisees are set up for success with their day-to day operations and training.
Well-known in the marketing world, Monson has over 17 years of experience in the industry with companies like Churchill Downs’ Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, Harrah’s New Orleans Casino & Hotel, Louisiana Publishing, and Planet Beach Franchising Corporation. Her knowledge in marketing, franchising and advertising will play a pivotal role in the growth of the companies within Ballard Brand’s profile. Monson will be responsible for assisting with overall company profitability, brand strategy and brand equity across all Ballard Brands companies.
“Bill and Leslie are joining the team with a depth of knowledge and experience in the franchise industry and we are confident they will help these brands expand their footprint and help franchisees grow advantageously,” says Peter Boylan, president of Ballard Brands. “Both have a deep understanding of the company culture and are committed to people; they will be a driving force of our success.”
Ballard Brands is a hospitality and food service business formed in December 2001 by brothers Paul, Steven, and Scott Ballard after success in operating retail beverage franchises, Smoothie King and PJ’s Coffee, in North Carolina and Louisiana. After starting the company with one restaurant and two coffee house franchises, the company now owns, operates, and manages restaurants and food and beverage concepts in 30 states and three countries.
The company's restaurant portfolio includes retail brands WOW American Eats, PJ's Coffee of New Orleans, The Original City Diner, and Boardhouse Serious Sandwiches, and Ole Saint. Through their Outstanding Management Group, the company manages Eloisa Restaurant and Filmore in the Oaks. These brands collectively total nearly 155 locations in both traditional and non-traditional models and continue to grow. Ballard Brands also operates wholesale brand New Orleans Roast Coffee, which is sold in grocery stores and featured in an array of locations, including restaurants, hotels, airports and convenience stores. Earlier this year, Ballard Brands acquired Garces Restaurant Group which is composed of 13 restaurants created by Jose Garces, a James Beard Award-winning chef from Philadelphia.