Save Local Businesses is a coalition dedicated to protecting and strengthening all sectors of small business, in particular the franchise business model, which is now under attack by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), an unelected regulatory body of five Washington bureaucrats.
Dexter & Djenane Bartholomew
Holmdel, New Jersey
The couple has been married for 17 years and sponsors several community youth organizations in New Jersey.
“We’re proud that our restaurants provide families a quality and economical dining experience while also spurring economic growth in their communities. If the NLRB expands the definition of joint employer, we would lose our autonomy and our ability to make decisions that are best for our business.”
Fairfield, New Jersey
College Hunks Hauling Junk
Stephen is a multi-unit franchisee of College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving, with territory locations in New Jersey, Ohio, Tennessee and Florida. He currently employs more than 70 people year round, and more than 100 during peak season. Bienko concentrates on “career growth” hiring for those just completing high school, community college and four-year institutions.
“I am proud to be an entrepreneur and an active member of my community. Owning a local business has allowed me the opportunity to provide jobs and help stimulate the local economy.”
Philly Pretzel Factory
Herv Breault is a co-owner of three Philly Pretzel Factory franchises in the Shippensburg and Lebanon, PA, areas and employs about 20 people.
“As a retired veteran, I know the importance of service. Owning my own small business is a great opportunity for those who have served to return to the civilian workforce, and I would hate to see it undermined by the NLRB.”
Concord, New Hampshire
Steve Duprey is the owner of The Duprey Companies, a group of companies engaged in real estate management, development and the hospitality business. Among those companies are a Choice Hotels Comfort Inn, a Courtyard by Marriott, Marriott Residence Inn, and a Fairfield Inn by Marriott. His hotel companies employ more than 200 associates and have received numerous awards for service excellence and community leadership. Most recently his companies created and funded a job training program for newly resettled refugees from Nepal who have been relocated to central New Hampshire.
“This is not a partisan issue. It is practical matter about how local businesses work. I benefit from the brand name and marketing of a global brand and retain the power to still run my business the way I want. Changing joint employer would take away my independence.”
Clint Ehlers of Eagleville, PA employs 18 people at two FASTSIGNS locations, which provide custom signs, banners, displays and other graphics to businesses and individuals.
“I bought a FASTSIGNS franchise so that I could run my own business, not so I could be part of someone else’s. It is a lot of work and responsibility but I am passionate about being a small business owner which allows me freedoms I would not have if I worked for someone else. Changing the joint employer standard would mean less independence and less control over the business that I have worked so hard to build.”
San Diego, California
Nothing Bundt Cakes
Mara was practicing law when she saw a new opportunity and pioneered the successful franchising of Nothing Bundt Cakes.
“I am proud to have been part of starting a successful franchise operation. From a legal, business and cultural perspective, the joint employer standard would be at odds with what it takes for these locally-owned businesses to thrive.
Aslam Khan is the CEO of Falcon Holdings and operates stores of brands such as Church’s Chicken, Long John Silver’s and A&W. He arrived in America in 1987 from rural Pakistan and started as a dishwasher. By 1999, he was CEO and owner of a 97-restaurant enterprise, which has now grown to more than 225 stores in 13 states.
“Being able to operate independently is essential to entrepreneurial success. If the joint employer standard the NLRB is contemplating had been in place I would never have been able to achieve what I have.”
Caroline Moore had over 15 years in business experience prior to making the decision to own a franchise. She wanted to make a difference in people’s lives and have professional independence in her own life.
“My staff and I firmly believe that our clients are not cases, but rather family. After personally experiencing the challenges of finding a trustworthy homecare professional for loved ones, my business partner, Jacqueline Kite-Powell, and I knew that BrightStar Care was the right fit for us both to make a difference in the community and also achieve our professional goals.”
Greensboro, North Carolina
The Little Gym
Gerald Moore and his family own five The Little Gym franchises in North Raleigh, NC, Greensboro, NC, Knoxville, TN, Farragut, TN, and Mt. Pleasant, SC employing 60 employees.
“If the NLRB expands its definition of joint employer, our family business would no longer be ours; and the last 19 years we’ve spent building our business would be lost.”
Tabbassum Mumtaz, owner of Apex Restaurants Management, Inc., is one of the largest Long John Silver’s and KFC and Taco Bell business operators in the country with 152 restaurants in six states.
“After nearly 20 years of being in the franchise business, I have come to appreciate the vital role each local franchise owner plays in making his or her business a success. I am an independent owner. We should not water down my role in my own business.”
Jack & Diane Nicol
Jack and Diane Nicole were recognized for their exceptional work at last year’s BrightStar Care national conference and received the company’s Clinical Excellence Award.
“We believe in the empowerment of franchising. It has served as such a powerful tool for our family and countless others. Joint employer threatens the business model that has helped us build successful careers for ourselves and our staff.”
Carson City, Nevada
John channeled a range of business experience and an entrepreneurial spirit into owning and operating FASTSIGNS locations in Nevada.
“To me, at best it [the expanded joint employer standard] would mean less control over my business; at worst it could mean being forced to close my shop, layoff my employees, and less economic activity in my community.”
Auntie Anne’s, Red Mango Frozen Yogurt and Jamba Juice
Matthew Patinkin is the co-founder of Double P Corporation which owns and operates Auntie Anne’s Pretzel, Red Mango Frozen Yogurt and Jamba Juice stories in eight states.
“Running a small business means having to make decisions all day long. If there’s confusion about who’s in charge, it creates enormous inefficiencies. It’s simply unworkable.”
John Sims is the owner and operator of Rainbow Station at the Boulders, an early education center located in Richmond, Virginia. He has more than 20 years experience managing recreational facilities and an education degree from Old Dominion University.
“To run a business effectively, you really need a good staff and to train and manage them well. If I knew I was not going to be able to manage my own staff, I might not have gone into business.”
Brooke & Les Wilson
Durham, North Carolina
Two Men and a Truck
Brooke and Les Wilson own seven Two Men and a Truck locations in Georgia, North Carolina, Maryland and Washington, DC. As multi-unit franchisees for the nation’s largest and fastest-growing franchise moving company, Brooke and Les employ nearly 300 workers, contribute to various local charitable organizations and help more than 22,000 people safely transition to their new home or office each year.
“We take pride in our business. We’ve been able to do what we love and help countless numbers of people along the way. If the NLRB changes the definition of ‘joint employer,’ it will completely change the face of what we’ve worked so hard for.”
John is a former Army captain. He left a successful pharmaceutical career to help patients in Central Alabama.
“As a veteran and a pharmaceutical professional, I know from personal experience the challenges of caring for a loved one who is ill. I knew that I was called to serve others. My business has provided my family with endless opportunities, I would really hate to see joint employer take those away.”
Barbara is proud of her successful business that she has worked hard to build and the opportunity to give back to her community.
“I am very concerned about losing control of the day-to-day operations of my business. I am also concerned that my 20-year franchise agreement will change from an opportunity to own my own business to becoming a manager who reports to a corporate entity.”
Los Angeles, California
Great American Chicken Corporation
Tony Frazier is CEO of Great American Chicken Corporation which owns and operates KFC franchise locations across Los Angeles County. Serving our country first in the U.S. Army as an Airborne Ranger, his career evolved into serving his community through restaurant ownership as a multi-unit KFC franchise owner of more than 70 locations.
“I previously worked on the corporate side of KFC corporation for 17 years, before deciding I wanted to be my own boss and own my own business. I am proud to have been part of a successful franchise operation which now allows me to give back to my community, locally and internationally. A new joint employer definition would mean l could lose the successful business I worked so hard to build.”
John “JD” Draper
Bay View, Michigan
Viridian Group LLC
John “JD” Draper has over four decades of restaurant experience. Currently, JD is the CEO for Viridian Group LLC, a family owned business, as a multi-unit, multi-state Franchisee Group with Pie Five Pizza Company. Formerly the President of Operations for V&J Holding Companies Inc., one of the largest multi-unit franchise restaurant companies in the United States with over 90 million in sales annually as reported by GE Capital 2012 Chain Restaurant Industry Review.
“As a US Army veteran, business owner and as a restaurant franchisee owner/operator … there is NO ROOM in my business for the NLRB’s attempt to change the Joint Employer standard.”