April 2019

And the 2019 Convention Survey Results are in!

By Kelly Rodenberg

Each year, a survey is sent to all attendees of the annual AKFCF Convention. Below are some highlights of the feedback we received from the 2019 Convention held in Orlando, Florida.

  • 54% of attendees rated their overall experience as excellent
  • The three primary reasons franchisees attend the convention include: KFCC Presentations, Networking, and Workshops
  • 84% of attendees liked the new, condensed program schedule
  • The most popular KFCC speakers were Kevin Hochman, Andrea Zahumensky, and Monica Rothgery
  • 70% of attendees found the Brand Q&A worthwhile
  • 98% found the AKFCF Tradeshow beneficial
  • 86% attended the private event at Universal Studios Florida™

Attendee Comments:
It was very informative and accessible. ...LOVED Daymond John, and I don't even watch "Shark Tank." Loved the resort, great walk around the property. The Leadership Team always sparks enthusiasm for new things. I enjoyed the Best of the Best presentation.

I truly enjoyed the stories and ideas that I learned from these RGM speakers. I brought home several ideas that I am anxious to get implemented.

Informative, energetic, great guest speaker in Daymond, trade show and universal experiences were fun for our families and much appreciated.

Seeing our KFC family and seeing the state and future of our brand.

The facility/hotel was excellent. The meals were good. I enjoyed the large group sessions with the KFCC people, and the marketing presentation is always my favorite.

Workshops were great. The quality of the vendor booths was also nice. Overall a very good and engaging experience.

Good opportunity to see franchisees and the 2019 vision.

Well done ... high energy and I thought KFCC team did a great job, including Kevin and his LT.

The Best of the Best was great! Lots of ideas and creativity up there; it was very inspiring!

I believe Ron is worth every penny that we pay to have him represent us as a group. I always look forward to hearing what he has to say at the Legal Update.

The Brand Q&A — Loved this segment as well. ...This is how we build a bond and partnership with our KFCC team.
Universal Event — fun, fun, fun ... many thanks ... we had a ball.


Thank you to everyone who attended the 2019 Convention! We look forward to seeing everyone in Nashville next year.

Congratulations to David A. Rudnick, president of Good Eats Hospitality, who was randomly selected from the survey responders. His name was drawn to win the 3-night stay in Nashville at the Gaylord for next year’s convention.


GAC Report: AKFCF Takes the Hill… 

By Hilary Halpern 

The AKFCF took to Capitol Hill this month to urge members of Congress to support bills that would address a fix to the Qualified Improvement Property (QIP) language.

The drafting error in the QIP provision of the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act causes building improvements to be written off over 39 years instead of one year as contemplated under the Act. As a result, a taxpayer gets to write off only 2.5% of their improvement costs in the year the expenditures are made, and 97.5% over the remaining 38 years, instead of writing off 100% of the cost in the year the expenditure is made.

The delay in correcting the provision has caused economic hardship for numerous businesses, including restaurants, retailers, real estate and construction industries, as well as the manufacturers that supply products to the building trade. The delay in investments has had ripple effects across the economy that impact the communities in which these companies are doing business.

AKFCF members also discussed other issues of importance such as not enacting a raise to the federal minimum wage, a commonsense definition of the 40-hour workweek, and menu labeling.

Donate to the PAC: Contributing to the AKFCF PAC is the best way to support the election and re-election committees of pro-business Members of Congress who share the same concerns as franchisees. The money raised in the PAC goes directly to Members of Congress. You may make your 2019 AKFCF PAC donation online by visiting our portal on the AKFCF website. Please click here to be guided to the website and contribute.

For more information, please contact your regional GAC representative or Hilary Halpern of Polaris Consulting, LLC (hhalpern@polariswdc.com).



March 2019

Engagement at the Board Level

By Kelly Rodenberg

To keep our AKFCF board meetings focused and on track, we are moving in new directions with streamlined agendas, addressing priorities that are of high importance to our membership and getting each board member more engaged on working committees. We want to make sure the majority of board members’ time is spent discussing issues of strategic importance — and minimal time is devoted to standard business items.

We all know how easy it is for a board to lose focus during periodic in-person meetings. To keep our board on track and empowered with making decisions, we are now configuring the meetings to allow the board to address action items and make immediate decisions to keep the Association evolving and have a vested interest in those decisions.

The majority of our board’s time will be spent discussing issues of strategic importance to the membership. This year’s top priorities are regional structure and alignment, a rainy day fund, and addressing the high cost of labor in restaurants. Since these topics are of great value, the board will not devote hours to the organization’s financials and other association business items that can be easily understood and digestible in a 5-minute update or written report. Without such a guiding structure, we often risk running down “rabbit holes.” In the past, we have asked for Chairs to provide written reports and give oral updates, and that lead to others starting to ask questions that got us off course when the answers were in the written reports. Too much information and too many micro-level details can make board meetings go bad.

So, how are we now getting our board ready for these in-person meetings?

Homework. Between meetings, AKFCF board members are expected to complete homework assignments, which will be spelled out prior to arriving on-site. The homework might be: Discuss with your region’s board this issue we’re bringing to the national board that would have a significant impact on your region’s operations or processes. Or it might be: Check with your region’s membership — what is their experience with communication methods or the need to provide health insurance to its employees. Each board member is expected to share their findings.

Discussion leaders. Before each meeting, Bryan Robinson appoints board members to drive the discussion. We want to make sure everyone feels comfortable with the discussion and we keep on point, and we don’t have that awkward moment, where everyone’s looking at each other saying, “OK, who’s first?”

Agenda structure. AKFCF’s Executive Committee has established the three strategic initiatives above. Each meeting agenda lists those key initiatives as topic areas for discussion, and agenda items are organized accordingly. It helps to bake in our strategic plan into our routine agenda. Our board members will be used to seeing those three initiatives, which give shape to each agenda, and it helps us stay focused.

We’ve heard from many that time spent at board meetings deters them from wanting to get involved at a higher level. We want to be conscientious about managing how our board spends its meeting time, otherwise, we risk volunteer churn. We don’t want to lose people who might otherwise make a good contribution.


GAC Report: The Fight for Minimum Wage in the 116th Congress Continued...

By Mary Donohue

On Thursday, March 7, 2019, the House Education and Labor committee voted on a party-line basis to report out the “Raise the Wage Act of 2019,” which would mandate a $15 minimum wage and eliminate the tip credit. It’s expected to receive a vote on the House floor by the end of April.  

The bill, which has more than 190 cosponsors (all Democrats), would also phase out the lower minimum wage for tipped workers — such as restaurant servers and valets — which has been $2.13/hour since 1996. 

The AKFCF GAC has been working with coalitions in Washington, D.C., that are countering many labor union arguments in favor of a $15 minimum wage are providing cover to both Republicans and moderate Democrats who oppose the bill in its current form. 

A recent survey polling nearly 200 U.S. economists found that nearly 90 percent said an appropriate federal minimum wage should be less than $15/hour. The concerns of economists are well known. In a 2014 report, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office reviewed several decades of literature on the minimum wage. It concluded that roughly 500,000 jobs would be lost at even a $10 federal minimum hourly wage. 

State & Local Update:
The International Franchise Association is working on a proposal to protect franchisors and franchisees from “discriminatory minimum wage” bills at the state and local level. Minimum wage proposals have treated franchisees as “big businesses.” The most famous example of this was probably the 2015 Seattle law, which required large businesses with more than 500 workers to pay employees $15/hour by 2017. Small employers with 500 or fewer employees had up until 2021. Most franchisees were included in the large business category. 

The franchisee proposal would preempt future state or municipal laws that discriminate against franchises by requiring independently owned franchises from complying with minimum wage hikes in a manner that is distinct from non-franchise small businesses. The bill would protect franchising through the definition of “enterprise” in the Fair Labor Standards Act. 

Donate to the PAC: Contributing to the AKFCF PAC is the best way to support the election and re-election committees of pro-business Members of Congress who share the same concerns as franchisees. The money raised in the PAC goes directly to Members of Congress.

You may make your 2019 AKFCF PAC donation online by visiting our portal on the AKFCF website. Please click here to be guided to the website and contribute. 

For more information, please contact your regional GAC representative or Mary Donohue of Polaris Consulting, LLC (mdonohue@polariswdc.com).  


Great Lakes Region Update

By Mary Beth Hamilton

It always has been important for your business to support the community your restaurant is in. 

We have struggled with wanting to do something that is beneficial to the community along with bringing in new customers. 

What we have recently done is partner with the local schools’ parent-teacher organizations. We designate a night for their school for fundraising and give them 10% of our sales for that night. This not only brings in new customers, but it gives our regular customers a chance to see their purchase support their community. The schools are then able to purchase items for their schools to help further their students’ education.

If you are looking for a community project to boost your sales and support the community, this may be a helpful idea.

Great Lakes regional report photo


February 2019

GAC Report: The Fight for Minimum Wage in 116th Congress Continued… 

By Mary Donohue

On Thursday, February 8, the House Committee on Education and Labor held its first hearing on the Raise the Wage Act, which would eventually double the federal minimum wage by 2024. The current minimum has been stuck at $7.25 since 2009. The law also would tie future changes to the minimum wage based on changes to median workers’ pay. So, if middle-class wages go up — or down — so does the minimum wage.

The bill, which has more than 190 co-sponsors (all Democrats), also would phase out the lower minimum wage for tipped workers, such as restaurant servers and valets, which has been $2.13/hour since 1996.

Quick-serve restaurant workers unions have been at the forefront of this effort to increase wages. Within five years, they’ve transformed an improbable proposal into a popular policy.

Business groups and Republicans are not happy about the fight for $15. They’ve long pushed back against any effort to raise the federal minimum wage as they believe that decision should be left up to the states and that a federal increase could destroy small businesses and trigger massive job losses. However, there has been a trend from American citizens, even in among Republican voters, that shows an increase in approval for increasing the minimum wage.

At Thursday’s hearing, it was apparent that the issue of minimum wage reflects the deep, partisan divide in Congress. Chairman of the Committee, Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA) said, “The federal minimum wage is no longer serving its purpose. There is no place in America where a full-time worker who is paid the current federal minimum wage can afford the basic essentials.” Ranking Member of the Committee, Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC) said, “This is an empty promise. Raising the federal minimum wage will not help workers make ends meet.”

Researchers have varied over the last 30 years on their findings, but there are a few things that most mainstream economists now agree on. First, that raising the minimum wage increases the average income of low-wage workers and may raise some out of poverty (depending on how big the raise is). Second, raising the minimum wage will likely cause job losses (depending on how big the raise is). Some research suggests hundreds of thousands of American workers could lose their jobs with a modest increase to the minimum wage.

The chances of this bill passing the Democratic-controlled House are very good. The challenge for Democrats will be to get enough Republican senators on board with the idea. In the past, GOP lawmakers have been overwhelmingly resistant to changing the minimum wage. However, this may change as more Republican senators are up for re-election this cycle than Democratic senators and could get some pressure from their constituents to raise the minimum wage.

Donate to the PAC: Contributing to the AKFCF PAC is the best way to support the election and re-election committees of pro-business Members of Congress who share the same concerns as franchisees. The money raised in the PAC goes directly to Members of Congress.

You may make your 2019 AKFCF PAC donation online by visiting our portal on the AKFCF website. Please click here to be guided to the website and contribute.

For more information, please contact your regional GAC representative or Mary Donohue of Polaris Consulting, LLC (mdonohue@polariswdc.com).


Thank You KFC Family for Giving Back in Orlando!

By Kelly Rodenberg

The AKFCF did not have a hands-on community service event at Convention this year. Instead, we asked each attendee to give back by donating items to the children of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

The mission of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is to advance cures, and means of prevention, for pediatric catastrophic diseases through research and treatment. Consistent with the vision of its founder Danny Thomas, no child is denied treatment based on race, religion or a family's ability to pay.

On Wednesday, February 6th, when registration opened, we could not have been more grateful, excited, and humbled by our KFC family’s generosity. It was an amazing sight to watch as donations overflowed. We collected 180 pounds of items for the children of St. Jude.

Their 8 locations in the United States treat children with cancer, blood disorders, and related life-threatening diseases. They take the toughest cases. This often includes children who do not respond well to standard treatments. Learn more at stjude.org.

St. Jude is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and relies on the generosity of donors. All donations are tax-deductible to the fullest extent permitted by law.
Thank you again for opening your hearts!


January 2019

Happy New Year!

By Kelly Rodenberg

We are ringing in 2019 with four highly interactive workshops that will be presented at the Convention in Orlando. I would like to recognize Rob Rianna and the Education Committee for their dedication to these programs. Developing these workshops takes a tremendous amount of time and effort over a period of eight months. We think you will find each of these workshops to be of great investment of your time. Each 75-minute workshop will be presented three times.

Thursday, February 7
2:45 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
KFC’s Pathway to the Future: More Satisfied Guests and Teams
Are you and your teams ready for the future of KFC? You’ve been asking the brand to return to plated meals, and we’re finally bringing it back to our restaurants through Scoop to Order. Learn how this new operations process is improving both the team member and guest experience, as well as best practices from your peers on how to successfully bring it to life in your restaurants. Plus, learn about the staggering, real costs of turnover and tools to help you calculate how much it hits your bottom line. We are all facing an unprecedented labor crisis together, so hear from other franchisees about the tools and strategies they are using to hire, train, and keep their teams. You’ll walk away with real-life examples and an action plan to take back to your restaurants and implement right away!

Karen Adams, Senior Manager of Human Resources
Doug Cook, Director of Restaurant Excellence
Kathleen Gosser, Director of Learning & Organizational Development
Cheryl VanAllen, Senior Manager of Learning Design, Readiness, and Learning Technology


Keeping Your Labor Real With the Rising Costs of Minimum Wage
Are you prepared for all of the cost implications of the next minimum wage increase? In this workshop, learn the real impact of a dollar minimum wage increase and two key things you can do to help mitigate the financial impact. See how easier procedures and scheduling changes create cost savings and labor reallocation that can lead to more productive teams, more satisfied guests, and more sales and profits for you! Hear directly from franchisees how they’ve succeeded with some of these tools and tactics in some of the highest wage markets in the nation.

Brandon Robertson, President, Northwest Restaurants, Inc.
Monica Rothgery, Chief Productivity Officer
Sam Ullrich, Senior Manager of Finance
Mike Wesley, Senior Director of Marketing


KFC’s Edge in Today’s Digital World
In this highly interactive workshop, you will rotate through three, quick sessions to experience and learn more about each of these vital KFC technologies: Grubhub delivery and online, customer pickup orders, Mobile Manager iPads, and Power BI, KFC’s new above-restaurant reporting platform. Learn how operators are growing their business through KFC’s Grubhub partnership and why digital online transactions are critical to the brand’s continued growth and success. Experience Mobile Manager iPads for yourself and see how they are simplifying tasks and saving time for our restaurant managers. Plus, see what exciting, new functionality is coming soon! Get a personal look at your organization’s data in Power BI, plus new capabilities like access to real-time data on delivery, sales, speed, and more. Don’t miss this opportunity to educate yourself on all of these technologies and how you can use them every day to save time and money and continue to grow your business! Download the Power BI mobile app before attending: search “Power BI” in App Store or Google Play; once downloaded, launch app, tap “Get started,” then Connect to Power BI option; enter TeamKFCUserID@yum.com (ex: abc1234@yum.com), then enter your TeamKFC user ID and password. View detailed instructions under Documents.

Patrick Coty, Director of Restaurant Information Services
Kevin Fyffe, Manager of Operations
Eric Trett, Director of Digital and Development Operations


Saturday, February 9 - On the Big Stage!
Listen to the Best

9:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.
Have you ever wondered how an RGM is able to create a team that helps them shine in all areas of the KFC business and become a Best of the Best RGM? After the success of Last Year’s Workshop, we decided to bring to you a new panel of successful Best of the Best RGM’s featuring Rebkeah Avis from the Stewart Team, Sherita Cooper from the JRN Team, Karl Kremple from the Alfred Team and Juan Reyes from Gavilan Team. These talented RGM’s will share their secrets to success in this exciting panel discussion. Be ready to learn some amazing ideas that can really help you create a top-notch restaurant team in your organization!

Advanced registration for Convention has now closed. You can register on-site on Wednesday, February 6 from 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. or on Thursday before the workshops from 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

For complete details go to www.akfcf.comWe look forward to seeing you all in sunny Orlando!


Southwest Region Update

By Roger A. Sparks

The Southwestern KFC Franchisee Association would like to welcome everyone to 2019 and we wish you great sales, low food and labor costs, plenty of available good help and score cards showing 5’s. Each new year brings the hope that this new year will top last year in every way.

In the SW, we are gearing up for the new challenges that come with new menu boards, scoop to order, and the need to have each member of our management team to be Certified Food Protection Managers among some of the many tasks that we face this year. The AKFCF Convention is quickly approaching, and we are meticulously planning our Spring RGM Rally in April that we are combining with the North West and hosting in Las Vegas.

Our Board of Directors is working to reach out to the franchisees in our region to get down to the basics of what makes us a great association and what makes our brand strong. Communication is key to sharing the best practices that we have to offer each other as well as to share the pitfalls that we all would like to avoid. Digital conversation is a powerful tool to use in the communication process, but sometimes a more powerful tool is just to have a conversation with one another and let the thoughts and ideas flow naturally.

I have noticed that in our region, as well as others, we have a few phenomena’s that are happening. We are having a lot of our longer-term franchisees getting out of the business and moving on to the next phase of their lives. With those exits from our system, we are having more and more consolidation of the stores to larger operators. Finally, I am seeing a lot of younger 2nd, 3rd and 4th generations of KFC operators coming into the brand and attending our meetings and wanting to learn more about the business and who we are as an association and a brand. These phenomena, I believe, will bring some big changes to the way the regions operate and how we will need to communicate with each other. We will have to learn to adapt to these changes and find new ways to interact and support each other to make ourselves and our brand bigger, better, and stronger as the days go swiftly by.

With all this in mind, I would encourage each of you to reach out to your fellow franchisees and leaders to strike up a simple conversation. We all have so much that we can learn from each other if we only took some time to communicate. Hopefully, if you get a call from one of our Board members, you can take a little time from your busy day to share a bit of insight that you have of our business and that information just might make us all better because of it.


GAC Report: The Fight for Minimum Wage in 116th Congress

By Mary Donohue

Later this week, House Democrats are planning on releasing a bill that would increase the federal minimum wage to $15/hour. Speaker Nancy Pelosi boasted that the $15 minimum wage would pass “in the first 100 hours” of a new Democratic-controlled Congress. It might be good politics, but is a $15 minimum wage good economics? 

Proponents argue that minimum wage increases help low-income families achieve a sufficient level of income. In reality, a higher minimum wage forces the government to create winners and losers, increasing wages for some at the cost of fewer jobs for others. 

A $15 minimum wage would represent a historically radically wage mandate. Over the federal minimum wage’s 80-year history, it has been an average of $7.40 an hour, slightly higher than the current federal standard of $7.25. 

A $15 minimum wage would also cause a remarkable compression of the wage distribution among hourly workers. In 2015, only 2.6 million workers, or 3.3 percent of all the hourly workers in the U.S., earned the minimum wage or less. At a $15 minimum wage, nearly 44 percent of all hourly workers would earn the federal minimum wage. This is compared to a range of approximately 1.5 to 4 percent of hourly workers in the past two decades. 

The AKFCF GAC is actively working with coalitions forming in Washington, D.C., to oppose the wage hike all the way to $15/hour. We will keep everyone informed on this important issue and its development. 

Donate to the PAC: Contributing to the AKFCF PAC is the best way to support the election and reelection committees of pro-business Members of Congress who share the same concerns as franchisees. The money raised in the PAC goes directly to Members of Congress.

You may make your 2018 AKFCF PAC donation online by visiting our portal on the AKFCF website. Please click here to be guided to the website and contribute. 

For more information, please contact your regional GAC representative or Mary Donohue of Polaris Consulting, LLC (mdonohue@polariswdc.com).  


December 2018

Happy Holidays KFC Family!

By Kelly Rodenberg
From our family to yours, we wish you a joyful holiday season filled with what's most important — spending time and creating memories with your friends and family. At AKFCF, we are especially grateful for supporters, like you, who can give St. Jude families the greatest gift of all — more time with their loved ones. 

This February at the 2019 Convention, we are asking you to give thanks for the healthy kids in your life, and give to those who are not. So that St. Jude families will continue to receive the little things that make their stays more enjoyable away from home, we are asking each of you to bring a donated item from this list with you to Orlando. We will have a designated area near the AKFCF registration desk for you to drop items off when you arrive. Because all a family should have to worry about is helping their child live and be comfortable in a home away from home. 

You all showed generous support to Shriners Children’s Hospital during our Convention in Austin when we asked this of you in 2017, and I know we can donate even more in Orlando!

Thank you all for your generous support and happy holidays!


Upper Midwest Region Update

By Kevin Schlutz

Is email an outdated mode of communication for keeping our members informed? For more than a decade, the regional Secretaries and AKFCF have relied on email as their number-one form of communication with you, our members. Secretaries constantly strive to keep their distribution lists up to date and current amid the constant changes in the membership. But with all the spam and other clutter hitting our email inboxes every day, does everyone take the time to read even a short, informational email?

Many believe in the busy world we live in that texting is becoming much more viable and apt to be read. This is the reason your regional Secretaries have been asking to update your contact information, including your mobile number, so that through a new program they and the AKFCF can send short texts to the members. Obviously, email still will be used for some things, but where a text would work, we believe that would be more appropriate.

Please cooperate by submitting your mobile number so that all members may be reached in this manner. We also are working on standardizing our communications according to a schedule so that you receive the information you need at the right time. As always, please let us know if you have any ideas or suggestions for better communications.


GAC Report: Technical Corrections Lame Duck Bill

By Mary Donohue

The AKFCF signed onto a letter sent to House and Senate leadership as part of the QIP Coalition that urged Congress to support the inclusion of technical corrections to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) in end of the year legislation to fix the Qualified Improvement Property (QIP) language.

The QIP Coalition is a group of like-minded businesses across a variety of industries who are negatively impacted by the error that was mistakenly written into the final language of the TCJA.

The drafting error in the QIP provision of the TCJA causes building improvements to be written off over 39 years instead of one year as contemplated under the Act. As a result, a taxpayer gets to write off only 2.5% of their improvement costs in the year the expenditures are made, and 97.5% over the remaining 38 years, instead of writing off 100% of the cost in the year the expenditure is made.

The very large difference in the after-tax cost of making improvements is causing a delay in store, restaurant, and leasehold remodeling projects. These decisions not only deny communities the jobs associated with substantial construction projects, but also deny our communities the opportunity to bring new, permanent jobs to an otherwise abandoned store or to revitalize a declining restaurant. Finally, the delay in remodeling projects creates safety concerns because, in some cases, it is causing a delay in the installation of sprinkler systems creating a more perilous situation in the case of fire.

The investment delays were confirmed in a recent survey by the National Association of Business Economics, which found that two-thirds of companies in the services sector say their capital spending remains unchanged since enactment of the tax reform law, which is attributed to the error in the law causing restaurateurs to put off new investment until after the provision is fixed.

The AKFCF GAC is working with allies in Congress to get this bill passed before the end of the Congressional session. We will keep the AKFCF membership updated of any changes.

Donate to the PAC: Contributing to the AKFCF PAC is the best way to support the election and reelection committees of pro-business Members of Congress who share the same concerns as franchisees. The money raised in the PAC goes directly to Members of Congress.

You may make your 2018 AKFCF PAC donation online by visiting our portal on the AKFCF website

For more information, please contact your regional GAC representative or Mary Donohue of Polaris Consulting, LLC (mdonohue@polariswdc.com).


November 2018

Just a Few More Days to Save!

By Kelly Rodenberg

Don’t wait, register by November 30 and save $100 on your AKFCF Annual Convention Registration Fees.


Why arrive early and stay late? For all the fun that AKFCF Prime Time 2 and Orlando have to offer!

Wednesday, February 6th

Ray Zimmerer Memorial Golf Tournament
7:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Rosen Shingle Creek Golf Course
(Registration deadline is Jan. 11, 2019)

Tee up on a brand new course: The redesigned Shingle Creek Golf Course! Planned by Arnold Palmer Design Company, the hotel’s new course is both innovative and classic. Set along the historic Shingle Creek headwaters of the Everglades, the course provides a challenging and rewarding game of golf for all skill levels. The natural beauty of the course creates a feeling of seclusion from the hustle and bustle of Orlando.

AKFCF “Prime Time 2” Registration and Green Room Experience
Wednesday, February 6 – 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Thursday, February 7 – 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Get the VIP treatment when you arrive on-site in Orlando! It’s a whole new registration experience as you arrive and check in for “Prime Time 2.” Begin by walking the red-carpet to take a selfie with your fellow celebrities in front of the step and repeat screen, then obtain your VIP badge that allows you access into the show and exclusive private events. Once checked in, you can enter the NEW AKFCF “Prime Time 2” Green Room. Just got off the plane and want to look and feel refreshed? We’ve got you covered with experts from our hair, make-up and massage team. Relax and unwind in a fun and funky atmosphere with unique finger foods and drinks. And don’t forget to pick up your swag bag on the way out!

Friday, February 8th
Private Party at Universal Studios Florida™
6:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.
(Transportation provided – buses will begin departing at 5:30 p.m. and run every 30 minutes)

Get ready for one of the biggest parties AKFCF has ever thrown, because we’ve reserved The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ - Diagon Alley™, Springfield, U.S.A. ™, and the World Expo areas at Universal Studios Florida™ just for you!
All night long, you’ll have unlimited access to experience the magic and excitement of Diagon Alley™, including the multi-dimensional thrill ride, Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts™. Plus, you can board the Hogwarts™ Express and journey to Hogsmeade™ Station in Universal’s Islands of Adventure™ and back.
In the World Expo area, you’ll zap aliens to save the galaxy on MEN IN BLACK™ Alien Attack™. And, you can enter the world of The Simpsons™ like never before! Visit Springfield, U.S.A.™, for an intergalactic spin on Kang & Kodos’ Twirl ‘n’ Hurl, and crash through Krustyland on The Simpsons Ride™.
Enjoy an array of food and drinks at each of these area’s themed restaurants at your leisure.
It’s a night of unforgettable fun and excitement — and it’s all yours!

Harry Potter characters, names and related indicia are © & ™ Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. Harry Potter Publishing Rights © JKR. (s18)
The Simpsons RideTTwentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. The Simpsons TM & © 2018 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. All rights reserved. Men In Black & Alien Attack: TM & © 2018 Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. All rights reserved. Universal elements and all related indicia TM & © 2018 Universal Studios. All rights reserved.

What’s coming to Orlando in 2019?
With so many amazing new additions heading to the parks, 2019 is shaping up to be one of the greatest years for theme parks in history. From massive new lands with multiple attractions and experiences to exciting new roller coasters, and even a few new family-friendly rides, there's no better time to visit Orlando than next year. Here are the top 5 new rides coming to the Orlando theme parks in 2019.

Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Fans of the galaxy far, far away will soon enter a whole planet filled with new adventures. Batuu is a remote trading post at the edge of the galaxy and in late fall of 2019, we'll be able to explore the Black Spire outpost village. You'll be able to experience two new rides here: One where you get to pilot the Millennium Falcon, and another where you'll have to escape the clutches of the First Order right in the middle of a climactic battle between the dark side and the light. The new land will also feature street side shops, a Cantina where guests can order a glass of blue milk, and a restaurant where the food is grilled over the flames of a pod racer engine. Plus, there will be alien residents and free-roaming droids around every corner. It's going to be out of this world!

Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railway at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Prepare to step into the movie screen as your family joins Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy on an all-new adventure through the wacky animated world of the new Mickey Mouse Shorts. Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway is the first ride to ever star the famous mouse, and it will feature a new type of high-tech projection effect on moving surfaces to help recreate the fun and frantic energy found in the popular Mickey Mouse shorts. This new family attraction also will feature its very own theme song, that's being written just for the ride. With crazy twists and turns and surprises around every corner, it will be an exciting new addition for the whole family when it opens in 2019.

Harry Potter Themed Roller Coaster at Universal Orlando
Fly far beyond the grounds of the Hogwarts Castle in an all-new adventure starring you. A brand-new roller coaster experience is coming to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade, located inside of Universal's Islands of Adventure. On your daring adventure, you'll meet some of the Wizarding World's rarest magical creatures and visit new and mysterious places. Universal is touting the new attraction as their most highly themed roller coaster to date, and they're calling it a new generation of thrill ride that will be fun for the whole family. Stay tuned as more details for this new coaster will be revealed in early 2019.

Tigris Roller Coaster at Busch Gardens Tampa
Get ready for some white-knuckle excitement when Busch Gardens Tampa opens their newest roller coaster. Located near Jungala, where the tigers reign, Tigris will be Florida's tallest launched coaster. On this intense attraction, riders will be launched up to 150 feet up and travel along more than 1,800 feet of steel track. You'll be catapulted forward at more than 60 mph, and then fall back down backward before taking on the inverted heartline roll. The track layout is designed to mimic the awe-inspiring agility of the tiger, the world's largest and most powerful cat. This new addition will start welcoming its first brave riders in the spring of 2019.

Lego Movie World at LEGOLAND Florida
Everything is awesome at the all-new Lego Movie World opening at LEGOLAND Florida in the spring of 2019. This whole new land will feature two new rides and one completely re-imaged one, a giant themed play area for kids, and chances to meet your favorite characters from the film. One of the attractions will be a totally re-imagined version of the interactive boat ride, The Quest for Chi, as this area will be replacing The World of Chima land at the park. One of the new attractions will expand the land even further, adding an immersive new adventure through Emmett's hometown of Bricksburg.

And that's not all, because 2019 has much more to offer at all of the parks! Sesame Street is coming to SeaWorld Orlando with new kid-friendly rides and a brand new parade. Aquatica Orlando is opening a brand new water thrill slide called KareKare Curl. Lightning McQueen is getting a new show at Disney's Hollywood Studios to help teach kids the art of driving. The Magic Kingdom is unveiling the new "Move It! Shake It! MousekeDance It!" dance party. Universal Studios Florida will be opening a brand new live-action show to replace Terminator 2: 3D. With so many new things in 2019, it's shaping up to the best year ever in Orlando!

Click here to see what 2018 brought to Orlando!

We hope you can take time away from your restaurants for a few days to experience all that Orlando has to offer with your friends and families.


GAC Report: Midterm Election Results as of Nov. 13, 2018

By Mary Donohue

House: Democrats needed a net gain of 23 seats to flip the House of Representatives. So far, they’ve gained 32 seats, with 10 races to go. Democrats have taken control of the House for the first time in eight years. 

Currently, Democrats have control of 227 seats and Republicans have control of 198 seats. 

Senate: Republicans kept the Senate — and picked up seats in the process. 

Notable races include: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) narrowly beat out Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-TX). Three Republicans flipped Senate seats in states that Trump won in 2016 (Mike Braun (IN), Kevin Cramer (ND), and Josh Hawley (MO). Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) was beaten by Jacky Rosen (D-NV), and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) won his race. 

The Arizona, Montana, and Florida Senate races are still outstanding as the votes were too close to call. Mississippi will go into a runoff as per their special election. 

Currently, Republicans have control of 51 seats and Democrats have control of 46 seats. 

Donate to the PAC: Contributing to the AKFCF PAC is the best way to support the election and re-election committees of pro-business Members of Congress who share the same concerns as franchisees. The money raised in the PAC goes directly to Members of Congress.

You may make your 2018 AKFCF PAC donation online by visiting our portal on the AKFCF website. Please click here to be guided to the website and contribute. 

For more information, please contact your regional GAC representative or Mary Donohue of Polaris Consulting, LLC (mdonohue@polariswdc.com).  


October 2018

Nominate a Fellow Franchisee by November 1!

By Kelly Rodenberg 

The AKFCF encourages members to submit nominations for the following three categories of awards to recognize individuals throughout the KFC family for leadership, career achievements, and best practices.

Why nominate someone for an award?

  • This is your opportunity to nominate someone wonderful.
  • It expresses gratitude for their hard work and dedication.
  • It lets them know they are making a difference in the lives of others.
  • Brings positive attention to the association and brand.
  • Conveys affirmative awareness to the good works being done by franchisees.
  • Provides others with a positive example to follow.
  • It’s free to nominate someone!
  • Allows them to be recognized in front of their peers.
  • Gives them the spotlight to shine on the big stage!

If you know someone who demonstrates leadership, commitment, and involvement with AKFCF, please nominate them for consideration as a candidate for one of the below awards.

The President’s Award honors members of the AKFCF who over the course of time, have made substantial contributions to the development of the Association and the KFC Brand. Individuals adhere to high standards of professionalism, decency, and collegiality. This award is given to franchisees who have consistently worked to support the AKFCF’s mission statement and who have performed “over and above” what has been required. This award is at the President’s discretion and is approved by the Executive Committee.

Awarded to second- and third-generation franchisees who have made a significant impact within their region or nationally. It recognizes individuals for their noteworthy contributions, innovative thinking, and volunteerism. This award is at the President’s discretion and approved by the Executive Committee.

Presented for the first time in 2015, the Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes an individual who has given decades of outstanding service and voluntary leadership spanning a career in franchising. This award is at the President’s discretion and approved by the Executive Committee.

The awards program recognizes individual accomplishments and contributions to the association community and is a call for continued service within the system. Award winners serve as role models and mentors for individuals who are interested in making a commitment to a career as a KFC franchisee.

Please send your nominations for all awards listed above on or before November 1 to AKFCF President, Bryan Robinson at brobinson@trfoods.com. Please include a detailed summary stating the reasons for this person’s nomination. Bryan will choose the recipients, subject to the approval of the AKFCF Executive Committee, and the awards will be presented at the 2019 Annual AKFCF Convention next February in Orlando, Florida.

For questions, contact Kelly at 224-209-6701 or at kelly.rodenberg@akfcf.com


Southwest Region Update

By Scott Duke, Vice President Southwest Region

The Southwest Region was very busy this summer. Sales trends continue to be positive, fueled by a very prosperous oil and gas industry. It's great to see that industry expanding their exploratory drilling as it continues to “fuel” a healthy economy. This is allowing many franchisees to continue their aggressive remodel schedules. 

So far, we’ve seen successful remodels from the following franchisees:

  • Atwell
  • Robertson
  • Ampex
  • KBP Foods, and more!

All of us are looking forward to a more aggressive advertising campaign in the 4th Quarter, especially focused on the high end. Coastal communities have seen some really positive comps, as we have been comping over a few hurricanes from 2017.

The SW Leadership has been reloading with fresh talent and the new ideas and energy have been exciting. We are starting to see the next regime of franchisees want to participate, and there are many talented individuals who have stepped up and offered their time and talent.

At our last meeting in San Antonio, we orientated those new leaders into their respective positions, and the future of SW looks very bright.

We recently had a change at the presidential office with Franklyn Nye selling his single store. Franklyn has long been a leader and a respected voice for the Southwest; his leadership and experience will be missed. We were fortunate to have Roger Sparks step up and fill that void and are now looking forward to his leadership for the next few years.

Roger and team have decided to combine efforts with our peers from the Pacific Northwest for the Spring RGM Rally that will now be held in Las Vegas. This should allow for ease of travel and should guarantee higher numbers in attendance.

Last, the Southwest continues to be well represented at the national level with several members holding offices and serving on committees. The influence of the Southwest continues to be strong and should allow for all franchisees in the Southwest to always have a voice.

What’s ahead? A strong group of representatives will be headed to the Super Regional in Denver. The combination of tenured leaders, as well as the “new blood,” will ensure that the KFC Brand will be well supported by the number-one region in the states.


Colonel Sanders’ Original Suit From Longtime Driver at Auction Nov. 2-3

By Heritage Auctions

For the last decade of his life, Colonel Harland Sanders relied on Dick Miller perhaps more closely than anyone else. As Sanders' driver and friend, Miller tended to the Colonel’s estat