McDonald’s has announced that its board of directors has named Chris Kempczinski, most recently president, McDonald’s USA, as president and CEO, effective immediately. Kempczinski has also been elected to the McDonald’s board of directors. Kempczinski succeeds Steve Easterbrook, who was let go from the company following the board’s determination that he violated company policy and demonstrated poor judgment involving a recent consensual relationship with an employee.

“Chris takes the reins of this great company at a time of strong, sustained performance, and the board has every confidence that he is the best leader to set the vision and drive the plans for the company’s continued success. He has the right mix of skills and experience to lead us forward having run our U.S. business, where franchisees are delivering strong financial and operational results, and overseen global strategy, business development, and innovation,” said Enrique Hernandez Jr., chairman of McDonald’s board of directors.

Kempczinski first joined McDonald’s in 2015, overseeing global strategy, business development, and innovation. In that role, he served the business units and franchisees by identifying new ideas and best practices to accelerate their growth and grow the overall value of the system.

In related news, McDonald’s has named Joe Erlinger to succeed Kempczinski as president, McDonald’s USA, effective immediately. Erlinger most recently served as president, international operated markets, with overall responsibility for McDonald’s wholly owned markets outside the United States. He began his McDonald’s tenure in 2002, working in strategy and new business development before moving onto regional and international leadership positions around the world. In his new role, Erlinger will be responsible for the business operations of approximately 14,000 McDonald’s restaurants in the United States, reporting to Kempczinski.

CEO transition press release

Erlinger press release

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