Wendy’s Area Coaches Go Above and Beyond!



The Spark Leadership Team is proud to recognize and congratulate the Area Coaches below. These leaders have put in significant effort, tremendous work ethic, and have gone above & beyond to ensure their Restaurant Teams are receiving the right support.


As unforeseen circumstances and challenges arise, these leaders tackle them head on, to not only ensure they continue to provide consistent results, but also to ensure Spark remains at the top among the competition.


Ralph Murphy


Ralph was recently promoted to AC at the latter part of Quarter 4 last year. He took on the challenge and acquired an area of 7 restaurants with several high opportunity units as well. From day one he has invested a significant amount of time in his restaurants. Ralph has been implementing routines, has focused on training, has been developing his new team and has been making improvements on the overall results of these units.


Most importantly, Ralph has done this by always maintaining a great positive attitude. The energy Ralph brings to his restaurants daily is contagious. Please see below some of his most recent accomplishments:


  • 1st District in our San Antonio Market to obtain 100% WeLearn Food Safety Certification.

  • Led our SA Market on 100% units being on target for SMG (most days in the period).

  • Has made the highest improvement on implementing our FSA routines in his restaurants.


Stephen Larck


Stephen is a very well-respected leader in our Ohio market, who is often the person to reach out to for support and to share Best Practices with the rest of his peers. Stephen does a great job upholding his restaurants to high operational and cleanliness standards. Most recently, Stephen took on the challenge of several (4) high opportunity restaurants in his Market to ensure our newest promotable AC was set up for success. He currently has two other AC/TSM candidates under his leadership being developed into higher roles.


We appreciate the consistency Stephen has with implementing and executing his ARL (Above Restaurant Level) success routines in his area. Please see below some of Stephen's most recent accomplishments:


  • Recently developed and supported one of his GMs to be promoted to the AC role in this Market.

  • He has been a huge asset to Jimmy and the rest of our Ohio ARLs and normally takes on projects/initiatives as well.

  • Stephen has one of the lowest management turnovers in this market, which is highly due to his focus on training and people development.

  • Has the highest volume unit in our company Spark and had 3 of his restaurants achieve $2 Million in sales for 2021.


Stuart Harrison


Stuart recently made the move from our San Antonio Market into our Ohio Market's four newest acquired restaurants. This is not an easy decision for anyone! It takes a lot of courage to make a significant move which requires a tremendous amount of adjustment and change. Stuart took on one of the toughest acquisitions Spark has ever been a part of. Taking over units that had minimal management staffing, operating hours like 11AM - 6PM, closed dining rooms in all locations, and a significant number of challenges.


The first week of acquiring this Market, Stuart and Carlos Espizona (Wendy’s Market Director) were 2 of the 5-6 crew members at our Springboro location working in position to ensure we kept this unit open for business. Please see some of the accomplishments Stuart has achieved during his first few months in this Market:


  • Lost the GM, Co-Manager, and AGM of one of his locations right after taken over due to retirement. Since then, he has improved the management bench of this unit by adding a GM, AGM, and a shift supervisor as well.

  • Stuart is now implementing success routines like Weekly GM Meetings, Consistent Practice FSA Evaluations, Weekly Schedules, and consistent Recruiting/Hiring Routines.

  • Staffing has improved at these restaurants, and a much higher level of teamwork has been implemented by Stuart.


Stuart has put an incredible amount of time into his restaurants. From day one he has worked tremendously to ensure he took his new team out of a very tough and challenging situation.


Because of the tremendous commitment these team members have shown towards their units, the Spark Leadership Team will be adding a recognition amount to their next payroll, hoping they enjoy this token of appreciation.


As a company, we believe it is of paramount importance to take a moment to reward and recognize our most important asset - our people. We truly appreciate and value our team at Spark, and look forward to celebrating achievements of theirs in the future.


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