American Dream: Former Denny’s Waitress now owns 75 locations

dennys-dawn-lafreedaLike many young people, Dawn Lafreeda started her working life at age 16. Her first job was as a hostess at a local Denny’s restaurant.

But this determined woman’s life quickly took a turn that would be instrumental in defining her success: “During college, she took on a second job at a software company, where she learned about accounting and managing personnel.” At 23, she was able to leverage her skills and burning desire to succeed to acquire a Denny’s store in Globe, Arizona. (It’s 87 miles east of Phoenix, in case you’d like to look it up).

18 months later, she was offered 4 more stores in Texas. Now, “Lafreeda has increased her empire to 75 Denny’s locations in six states, becoming the largest single-owner franchisee in the system.”

Read more

jamalmashburn_D_20130911152954Here’s another great franchise-building story, about NBA star Jamal Mashburn.


~ This story is posted by Norris Lozano, CEO of BusinessUS.


More on Mashburn Sackett’s launch…

WSJ-logo“FORMER HOOPS STAR GOES MAD”: Back in 1992, Jamal Mashburn played for the University of Kentucky in one of the greatest college baskeball games ever, an overtime loss to Duke (the Christian Laetner buzzer beater game).

“Now, 22 years later, as hundreds of other college hoops players look for their March Madness moment, Mashburn  is opening up an new ad agency in Chicago with the help of veteran ad executive Jonathan Sackett, WSJ reports. Mashburn, who played in the NBA for the Miami Heat and other teams, is following the lead of other jocks, including current Los Angeles Laker Steve Nash.

“Mashburn believes that having been involved in marketing from a young age gives him a unique perspective.:”People don’t realize that when you are a youth playing a sport you are already involved in marketing because you are marketing yourself,” he said.


NBA Player Shooting For Madison Ave

BN-CB076_mashst_E_20140323121727Great article in today’s Wall Street Journal about Jamal Mashburn and his Chicago-based marketing agency, Mashburn Sackett, a partnership with the inimitable Jonathan Sackett.

Check ’em out!

~Norris Lozano, CEO of BusinessUS

Jamal Mashburn is a role model for athletes in business

jamalmashburn_D_20130911152954Former NBA All-Star Jamal Mashburnis featured in a new Bleacher Report article about athletes and franchising. And it’s no wonder: Mashburn is one of the most successful former pro-athlete / franchisees, with about 80 stores nationwide.

IN the BR piece, Mashburn is quoted extensively about his experiences in franchising. The 6’9″ former All-Star ” first got into franchising in 1997 when he met Chris Sullivan, one of the founders of Outback Steakhouse. Ever since Mashburn was a teenager, intrigued by people holding briefcases on their way to work, he was always thinking about a business career beyond basketball.”

Being recognized for his business expertise is highly rewarding. “I want to continue my legacy as a businessman. It gives people a chance to see me as more than just a former pro athlete.”