Starbirds CEO and founder Aaron Noveshen wrote a letter to customers and employees Monday. Here’s what it said:

Dear Starbird Community,

Our country is suffering. These past 10 weeks, we’ve witnessed over 100,000 Americans die from COVID-19. In the midst of this, 40 million people have lost their jobs, with the hardest hit being those of low income and many being people of color. We have all bore witness to the unjust death of George Floyd and the tremendous outpouring of sympathy, peaceful protest, anger, and violence in our communities and throughout the country.  It is truly a time for change.

At Starbird, positivity and inclusion of our communities is the core of our business and culture. We choose not to divide nor discriminate, but rather, choose to bring our community together. We stand in solidarity with the people of color in our community to fight systematic racism and we stand with the hard working police officers, who protect and serve our community every day. This week a portion of our revenues will be donated into the community to support Black Owned Businesses impacted by both COVID-19 and the damages caused by recent violence. It is our goal to help support the people in the African American community who can provide goods, services and jobs to build for a sustainable future. We will release more details about this during the week.

As we seek to understand all sides of this tragedy that we are facing right now, I ask myself what can I do to make a difference? So many questions arise. Do I go out today to the streets holding the hands of my children in solidarity with those who are suffering at this time? Do I visit our restaurants and stand side by side with our amazing workers who show up every day as part of our community?

How do we keep our people safe? How do we provide more opportunity for people to make a better life? How do we fulfill our mission of positivity? To be totally honest with you I have more questions than answers right now, but through dialogue and engagement with the community and our Starbird team, I hope to begin to find answers.

Starbird will continue to work towards positive change while rewarding everyone who’s contributed to our business’s success, to their families, to their communities. We will be closing some of our restaurants early due to curfew right now, as we want our team members to have the opportunity to get home safely. I do want to share we’ll be paying our teams for their normal full scheduled hours in the week(s) ahead.

At Starbird, we can’t change the world alone. But I hope the profound message of this movement inspires you to get involved – and be a force for real, positive change.


Aaron Noveshen

Founder and CEO

Fast Casual, News