Volunteer leadership development expert John M. Knibb said that “a volunteer leader’s personal passion for the group’s mission is contagious and it motivates.” I could not agree more. And this February we will witness this firsthand as the IFA leadership transitions into a team that has been in the making for years. The association is very fortunate to have a transition process that is orderly and efficient to ensure that key programs and services continue.
The IFA 2013 leadership team has been headed by Chairman Steve Romaniello, CFE, managing director of Roark Capital Group, who has made great contributions to IFA in the areas of franchisee engagement, technology innovations, our enhanced state-based grassroots advocacy and our political action committee FranPAC. In addition, his leadership with IFA’s Educational Foundation has led to the call for an upcoming Capital Campaign that will support the enhancement of professional development programs and academic-related partnerships to strengthen the industry. Steve has been a great leader and friend to the IFA and the entire franchise community. He moved into the chairman’s seat after serving on the leadership team for three years, which made him more than prepared to take over the leadership reigns in 2013.
This seamless leadership structure will continue in 2014 as Steve Joyce, president & CEO of Choice Hotels International assumes the chairmanship of the IFA at the 54th IFA Annual Convention in New Orleans this month. Steve was elected to the IFA leadership in 2011 as secretary after serving on the board of directors, Executive Committee and multiple other IFA committees for many years. Steve has also served as the 2010-2012 chairman of the U.S. Travel Association. As you will see on page 20, Steve has a passion for franchising and the IFA, and he will continue to lead us on a path of growth and success as we work to promote, protect and enhance the franchise industry.
Also moving up in the leadership chairs are Melanie Bergeron, CFE, chairwoman of the board of TWO MEN AND A TRUCK, who becomes vice chairwoman, Aziz Hashim, a multi-unit and multi-brand franchisee and president & CEO of NRD Holdings, LLC, (Popeyes, Checkers/Rally’s Drive-In Restaurants, Inc., Subway and PetValu), who becomes treasurer and Shelly Sun, CFE, CEO and co-founder of BrightStar Franchising, LLC, who joins the team as secretary. As designed by our bylaws, all of these leaders will one day assume the IFA chairmanship.
They will build on the success of leaders who have come before them and who have made franchising the strong and proven business model that it is today. IFA and the industry have a long history of leaders who have helped to make franchising what it is today. We will honor five of those leaders during the IFA Convention when we induct them into the IFA Hall of Fame: Conrad Hilton, founder of Hilton Hotels, J. Willard Marriott, founder of Marriott International, Anthony “Tony” Martino, founder of MAACO, James H. Maynard, founder of Golden Corral Corporation and Thomas “Tom” Monaghan, founder of Domino’s Pizza.
We are very fortunate to have such diverse, well-respected, seasoned and passionate leaders to guide the strategic direction of IFA and the industry. One year from now, IFA will celebrate its 55th anniversary. Fifty-five years of seamless leadership transitions and 55 years of helping the industry grow and prosper. As we prepare for another transition, IFA’s 2014 leaders are fully aware of the legacy they inherit and they are prepared for both the challenges and the opportunities ahead.