October 22, 2009 // Franchising.com // SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Michelle Keen, the daughter of BLIMPIE franchise owners, Arthur and Kay Keen, in Boise, ID, is the winner of the annual $5,000 Randy G. Pirotin Educational Scholarship.
The scholarship is named after longtime BLIMPIE Area Developer, Randy Pirotin, who in the summer of 2008 lost a courageous battle with cancer. Area Developers and BLIMPIE created the educational scholarship to honor his name, and to reward BLIMPIE employees, immediate family members of Area Developers and franchisees who share the same enthusiasm, dedication and hard work that Pirotin exemplified.
"Randy was a great friend and an inspiration to all our Area Developers and his Georgia franchisees," said Patrick Conlin, BLIMPIE Area Developer for Long Island, New York. "He lived life to its fullest, and worked tirelessly to make BLIMPIE the number one restaurant franchise chain."
Miss Keen works in her parents' BLIMPIE restaurant when not attending classes at Boise State, where she plans to major in Graphic Design. The scholarship evaluation committee cited her intellect, her community spirit, and her desire to help children as contributing factors in awarding her the scholarship.
"For 45 years giving back to the communities we serve has made BLIMPIE 'America's Sub Shop,'" said Conlin. "Now in Randy's name we're giving back to our franchise community for their service. I know he'd be proud and pleased that Michelle is our 2009 recipient."
Headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz., BLIMPIE serves freshly sliced, deli style sandwiches made with quality ingredients along with delicious soups and salads. Founded in 1964, BLIMPIE has grown to nearly 1,100 franchised restaurants across the U.S. In 2006, BLIMPIE became part of Kahala, one of the fastest growing franchising companies in the world with a portfolio of 12 quick-service restaurant brands.