By Ashley Rader
Chick-fil-A President and Chief Operating Officer Dan Cathy paid a visit to the Elizabethton Chick-fil-A Thursday morning.
But he wasn’t there for carry-out.
Instead, he was on hand to meet with the owners and employees of one of the national chain’s highest-performing restaurants.
Elizabethton Chick-fil-A owner Mary Tipton said it was the restaurant’s tradition for Cathy to meet with all new franchise owners after the location’s grand opening, but he had not been able to make it to the Elizabethton restaurant because of scheduling conflicts.
Cathy said he was in the area to visit with the operators and to discuss their strategies for operating a successful restaurant.
“I wanted to congratulate them on the wonderful grand opening they had and for the outstanding customer service they provide,” Cathy said. “They are one of the top-performing restaurants in the whole company. I wanted to see first-hand how they do such an outstanding job. They are a lighthouse for other restaurants in the Chick-fil-A company.”
Tipton said she and her husband Tommy had been aware that the Elizabethton restaurant was one of the top performing locations prior to Cathy’s visit.
“It comes down to the great people who work here,” she said.
Cathy said Thursday was his first visit to Elizabethton and that he was impressed with the city’s small-town atmosphere.
“I love small towns,” he said. “People are concerned for each other. Elizabethton has found the right balance of holding on to where it has been and reaching for the future.”
During the visit, Cathy met with the Elizabethton employees and heard from each one their own “Chick-fil-A story.”