Del Taco, LLC has named Mimi Somerman to the newly created role of chief marketing officer.

Somerman, an industry veteran, most recently was senior vice president of marketing for Lake Forest, California-based Johnny Rockets, an international retro diner chain, where she led a successful effort to revitalize the brand. During her leadership, Johnny Rockets earned the Nation’s Restaurant News “Hot Again!” award, developed a new menu strategy, and achieved above segment average same-stores sales growth.

At Del Taco, Somerman will report to Shirlene Lopez, president and COO. “Del Taco intends to grow its business and a key strategy driving this growth is to focus on what we as a brand need to do to stay relevant to today’s consumer,” Lopez says. “Mimi’s strategic strengths will build upon and enhance our team’s marketing and brand building initiatives.”

Sharon Fogg, Del Taco’s senior vice president of marketing, as well as the marketing and R& D team will report to Somerman in her new role.

“I’m thrilled to join Del Taco and work with such a great marketing team,” Somerman says. “We will be looking at dynamic new strategies to continue to build traffic and the brand in every Del Taco market.”

After earning an MBA at UCLA, Somerman began her career at Pepsi-Cola with marketing management responsibilities for the Pepsi and Mountain Dew brands. During this time, she was promoted to general management responsibility for several Pepsi-Cola markets in California.

She advanced from there to successful assignments such as vice president of field marketing for Taco Bell and senior vice president of marketing for Coco’s and Carrows.

On the agency side, Somerman’s marketing experience includes a stint as senior vice president with Alcone Marketing Group, where she had responsibility for many brands including Burger King, Evian, and Oroweat.

Del Taco operates or franchises more than 495 restaurants in 14 states. Del Taco offers a full range of made-to-order Mexican items such as tacos, burritos, quesadillas, and American favorites including cooked-to-order burgers, fries, and shakes.

News, Del Taco