Global Franchise Group, the strategic brand management company and franchisor of Great American Cookies, Hot Dog on a Stick, Pretzelmaker, Marble Slab Creamery, and Round Table Pizza has elevated Annica Conrad to Chief Marketing Officer and welcomed two new Vice Presidents: Chef Jason Dowd (Vice President of Culinary Innovation) and Jon Gordon (Vice President of Creative Services). The moves come after an organizational restructuring priming the business for future acquisitions and growth.

“Global Franchise Group is mission focused and the talent and commitment of our team is at an all-time high,” says Paul Damico, CEO of Global Franchise Group. “We are building a shared service platform that will enable us to best champion our current and future brands. Our leadership team has the industry experience and know-how to get us there.”

Conrad, who joined GFG in 2018, has proven to be an effective leader and strategic brand visionary. She spearheaded the new identity and experience for Great American Cookies, Marble Slab Creamery and the concept’s co-brand locations. Conrad also directed the GFG COVID-19 task force leading brand and franchisee response and action. Before being promoted to CMO, she was Executive Vice President, Brand Marketing for all GFG brands.

Joining GFG as Vice President of Culinary is Jason Dowd, a strategic hospitality leader and creative culinary innovator with a unique background in concept development, product innovation and brand strategy. Before coming to GFG he was Head of Global Food & Beverage/Director of Culinary Innovation for InterContinental Hotel Group where he established IHG’s first test kitchen and Food & Beverage training center and evolved its branded restaurant and bar concepts across 5,400 plus properties worldwide. He also previously served as Vice President of Innovation & Corporate Executive Chef for FOCUS Brands (Moe’s Southwest Grill), Director of Innovation & Corporate Executive Chef for Consumer Capital Partners (Smashburger, Live Basil Pizza), and Corporate Research & Development Managing Chef for Darden Restaurants, Inc. where he developed menu concepts for Olive Garden.

Gordon, Vice President of Creative Services for GFG, is an award-winning Executive Creative Director with 20 years of agency and in-house experience. Most recently he served as Senior Vice President, Executive Creative Director at FOCUS Brands where he led the in-house agency team supporting Moe’s Southwest Grill, Schlotzsky’s, McAlister’s Deli, Carvel, Cinnabon and Jamba. During his tenure with FOCUS, he launched The Content Kitchen studio consisting of photography, videography, editing and content creation to support all brand’s production needs from concept through execution. Prior to that, he was a Senior Art Director at J Walter Thompson in Atlanta and an Art Director at Solomon Says.

Global Franchise Group’s mission is to champion brands and the people who build them. It builds great brands that connect people with craveable products and memorable experiences. GFG currently supports more than 1,400 franchised and corporate stores across all brands located in 16 countries and has system wide sales close to $1 billion.

Fast Food, News