Zaxby’s Hires First Chief Development Officer

Zaxby's chief development officer Vanessa Fox.
Zaxby's chief development officer Vanessa Fox.

Zaxby’s, a 900-unit fast-casual chicken chain has hired Vanessa Fox as chief development officer. Fox was formerly senior vice president, CDO at Jack in the Box. The first CDO in Zaxby’s 30-year history, Fox will report to co-founders Zach McLeroy and Tony Townley.

“Our brand is experiencing its best unit-level performance in many years, and we know Vanessa will build on that,” said McLeroy, who is Zaxby’s CEO. “She has a clear passion for building trust and credibility in the licensee community, which is something that we have always highly valued.”

At Jack in the Box, Fox worked with business stakeholders to build, maintain and execute the company’s real estate strategy, according to a Zaxby’s statement. Prior to that, she worked with Jack in the Box and Qdoba on restaurant development including construction, architecture and design as well as facility management.

In her role at Zaxby’s, Fox will manage the franchise licensing and development teams and foster continuity with design and construction. She holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and an MBA in addition to her culinary certificate from the San Diego Culinary Institute.

“I am thrilled to join Zaxby’s and strategically lead its growth plans,” Fox said. “I seek to build highly functioning and diversified teams to tackle projects and can’t wait to get to know Zaxby’s team members and learn about their goals, skills and aspirations.”

“Vanessa will be an asset to our team as she capitalizes on market growth opportunities and operational improvements,” said Townley, who now serves as Zaxby’s chief strategy officer. “We look forward to working with her to help manage the complexities of our comprehensive remodel program.”

Zaxby’s recently hired Keith Anderkin as vice president of supply chain and quality assurance and Alan Ludloff as vice president of brand marketing.

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