Denny’s announces Kelli Valade as upcoming CEO

– USA, SC –  Denny’s Corporation (NASDAQ: DENN) today announced the appointment of Kelli Valade as CEO and President, effective June 13, 2022, to succeed John Miller, who will retire.

The Company also announced the retirement of its President Mark Wolfinger effective June 1, 2022.

Mr. Miller and Mr. Wolfinger will retain their existing positions on the Board of Directors, which will help ensure a seamless transition.

“In appointing Kelli, we have found a proven leader in the restaurant industry with the right combination of talent and experience to accelerate the current momentum of Denny’s brand. The future of Denny’s is bright, and we are excited to have her at the helm as we build on our past successes,” said Board Chair, Brenda Lauderback.

About Kelli Valade

Kelli Valade, a 30-year restaurant veteran, brings to Denny’s a proven history of developing and executing bold strategies within the restaurant industry. Kelli Valade has deep experience in marketing, talent and people development, digital transformation, operational rigor, and strategic development. While at Brinker International, she held roles as President, COO, and SVP of Human Resources and was instrumental in helping the company accelerate its growth, drive greater operational efficiencies, and cultivate a purpose-driven culture to attract and retain employees. She was the first woman Brand President for Chili’s Bar & Grill where she led the strategic growth of more than 1,600 global restaurants and over 80,000 employees globally. Before her role as Red Lobster CEO, Ms. Valade served as CEO of Black Box Intelligence from 2019 to 2021.

“Denny’s is a world-class brand that has earned the trust and loyalty of generations of guests as the leading family dining restaurant. I admire the Company’s guest-first approach and unwavering purpose of loving to feed people,” said Kelli Valade. “I am excited to work alongside a strong and highly experienced management team, a stellar franchise organization, and dedicated team members as we deliver further innovations while enhancing the guest experience. Stepping into this role, I am incredibly confident about the future opportunities for Denny’s and our commitment to driving long-term sustainable growth for our shareholders.”

Ms. Valade holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Binghamton and a Master’s of Business Administration from Syracuse University. She is on the Board of Directors of Seasoned. co, the Women’s Foodservice Forum, and the National Restaurant Association Education Foundation.

About Denny’s

Denny’s Corporation is the franchisor and operator of one of America’s largest franchised full-service restaurant chains, based on the number of restaurants. As of March 30, 2022, Denny’s had 1,634 franchised, licensed, and company restaurants around the world including 153 restaurants in Canada, Puerto Rico, Mexico, the Philippines, New Zealand, Honduras, the United Arab Emirates, Costa Rica, Guam, Guatemala, El Salvador, Indonesia, and the United Kingdom.

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Talent4Boards Team