Tijuana Flats Burrito Co. has named Brad Kaemmer as CEO of the fast-growing 93-unit Tex-Mex restaurant chain.
Kaemmer will assume leadership of the organization next month, reporting to Tijuana Flats chairman and co-owner J. Camp Fitch.
Following a brief transition period, founder and co-owner Brian Wheeler will shift his focus to the growth of Tibby’s New Orleans Kitchen. Wheeler will continue to serve on the Tijuana Flats board of directors and remain involved in strategic decisions affecting the brand.
Fitch will work closely with Kaemmer and continue to actively oversee the management and direction of the company.
“Brad is an experienced and energetic leader who we’re excited to have on our team,” Fitch says. “As we add new restaurants in Florida and other states, we’ll continue to seek talent from both inside and outside our company to help us build on the strong performance we’ve achieved.”
Wheeler adds, “At Tijuana Flats, we also strive to get better and come up with new flavors and ideas. I’m excited about the fresh perspectives Brad brings to the table and the proven leadership skills he brings.”
Reporting to Kaemmer will be the heads of the company’s various departments, including finance, marketing, human resources, development, purchasing, and training. President Tony Sperrazza, who will continue to be responsible for operations and oversee all area supervisors, will also report to Kaemmer.
Kaemmer most recently served as chief operating officer of Boca Restaurant Group, an Ohio-based restaurant group operating high-volume upscale restaurants. Before that, he spent more than 10 years at P.F. Chang’s China Bistro.
As regional vice president at P.F. Chang's, he oversaw 59 restaurants across 15 states generating about $270 million in annual sales.
Earlier in his career, Kaemmer was vice president of food and beverage for the Stratosphere Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. He also held operations posts in San Francisco and Las Vegas with brands including Fog City Diner, Mustard’s, Sfuzzi Italian Bistro, and Palm Steakhouse.
A graduate of both the University of Las Vegas and the Ecole Hoteliere de Lausanne in Switzerland, Kaemmer got his start in the business working at his family’s restaurants in Vail, Colorado.