Retiring Vice-Principal Glenn Townsend Starts New Career with Dickey's Barbecue
March 20, 2008 // Franchising.com // (WATKINSVILLE, Georgia) – Dickey's Barbecue Restaurants and Glenn Townsend will bring Watkinsville its first barbecue restaurant this summer. The restaurant will write the second chapter in Townsend's life, when he retires at the end of the school year as Assistant Principal for Oconee County School District. There, he served for the past 16 years as an educator and administrator, and for another 13, Townsend was with Clarke County School District.
"It's just time," explained Townsend of his career change to restaurateur. "I have fed minds for almost three decades and now it's time for a change of pace. Now, I'll feed the families of Watkinsville this delicious barbecue."
Last year, when thinking about his impending retirement in May, 'Mr. Townsend' began searching online for successful franchisors that would make sense in Oconee County. When he found Dickey's Barbecue Restaurants' Web site, it piqued his interest and that of his son, Travis, who will be an assistant manager and hopes to become a restaurateur himself.
Considering the need authentic, slow cooked Southern barbecue could fill in Watkinsville, Travis and Glenn took a road trip to Dallas, Texas. The two met with Dickey's executives and were comfortable about the decision, but it wasn't until the father and son ate at a local store that they became confident.
"We gotta' do this, Dad," exclaimed Travis wiping barbecue sauce from his mouth.
Before deciding to open Dickey's Barbecue Pit in Watkinsville, Townsend asked several people in Dallas about the reputation, service and the food of the nation's barbecue leader and no one had a negative word to say. Two days later, the contract was signed.
Since signing in September, the Athens native has had some time to think about how to develop awareness in the community when he opens.
"I'm a teacher. I plan on educating everyone on Dickey's excellent quality of meats, sides and service," he added.
According to Townsend, his Dickey's Barbecue Pit will have a simple four-step process for success: serve delicious, hot food; hire friendly, welcoming students and other people from the community; develop excellent customer service that anticipates needs and produces results; and always have a clean and inviting store.
"His passion to succeed and commitment to the community is a winning combination for Dickey's," said President of Dickey's Barbecue Restaurants Roland Dickey, Jr. "With Glenn's location and excellent ties to the community, we look for good things in Watkinsville."
Townsend plans to keep his close ties with the school districts in Oconee and Clarke Counties after retirement. He plans to reach also local churches and work closely with the University of Georgia, his alma mater. Townsend also plans to invest his time and food in the Special Olympics.
Founded in 1941, Dickey's Barbecue Restaurants began in Dallas, Texas with a single goal – "Serve the best tastin' barbecue imaginable, just the way people like it. And don't make 'em wait too long to get it." More than 60 years later, Dickey's is now the fastest growing barbecue chain in the country and is rapidly becoming the largest franchising concept in its category serving some of the best mouth waterin', lip smackin', great tastin' barbecue in the United States. Beginning with an aggressive growth strategy and proven business model, and since implementing its proprietary five revenue streams for business growth, Dickey's is on track to double its locations in 2008. Currently, Dickey's Barbecue Restaurants can be found in more than 15 states and 90 locations nationwide. For more information on partnering with Dickey's Barbecue Restaurants in any location, call (866) 340-6188 or visit www.dickeys.com/franchise.aspx. Dickey's: Slow cooked. Served fast.