Bojangles announced that Byron Chandler, an experienced quick-service restaurant industry real estate executive, has been named chief development officer for the restaurant chain best known for its chicken, biscuits and Legendary Iced Tea. In this new role, he will be responsible for leading Bojangles’ real estate, construction and design teams and implementing the company’s strategic plans to build its real estate portfolio for future growth. Chandler will begin on June 7.

“With recent strategic growth announcements, it’s clear that demand for the Bojangles brand is growing,” says Jose Armario, CEO of Bojangles. “Byron’s proven track record of leadership in restaurant development will further fuel our pipeline and strengthen our presence in new and existing markets.”

Chandler has a history of success in real estate development and construction management with McDonald’s, where he most recently served as head of the new site acquisition team for the U.S. and was with the fast-food chain for nearly 20 years. Prior to that, he spent six years as real estate and construction manager for BurgerBusters, a Yum! Brands franchisee, leading real estate acquisition and construction management of new and remodeled Taco Bell, KFC and Pizza Hut restaurants.

“Joining the Bojangles team is a natural fit for me,” says Chandler. “They have great leadership, great employees, great food, a growing iconic brand with a culture of hospitality and authenticity. What’s not to get excited about? I am truly humbled to be part of this brand and look forward to working with Jose and the team to build on its success.”

Chandler received his undergraduate degree from Randolph-Macon College in Virginia and an MBA from the University of Mississippi.

In addition to Chandler’s appointment, Jose Costa will now become Chief Growth Officer to focus on national franchising and international growth. Costa has led franchise development at Bojangles for the past two years and achieved success with recent deals such as Love’s Travel Stops, long-time Bojangles’ franchisee Jeff Rigsy and Chaac Foods to expand Bojangles’ presence in new and existing markets.

“There is nothing more important in our goal of becoming a Southern Powerhouse than securing experienced, high-quality franchisees to grow our brand,” says Armario. “Jose has done a great job in this area, and we look forward to continuing this momentum of strategic growth as he works closely with Byron.”

Chandler and Costa will report to Armario and serve on the company’s Executive Leadership Team made up of a diverse group of veteran business, retail and restaurant leaders with more than 100 years of combined experience. The company was recently named to Forbes’ list of the Top 500 Places to Work for Diversity.

Employee Management, News, Bojangles