Business/Entrepreneur of the Month » July 2014
Ed Donnelly Ent. Inc.
The journey Ed and Karen Donnelly have taken is a classic story of hard work, seizing opportunity and real-izing success. It is a story that should be told to every young person with ambition and one we are happy to tell this month as we recognize the Ed Donnelly Ent. Inc as the July Business of the Month.
If you do not know Ed and Karen they own and operate the McDonald’s North and South locations in Bellefontaine. They employ approximately 120 people and rep-resent the leading food service provider in the United States, and the joy of my children’s heart.
But this success was not handed to Ed and Karen. In fact their journey began where many of their employ-ees are today…
Both Ed and Karen began their career with McDonald’s as crew members within a restaurant. In different cit-ies and different years (1977 and 1981 respectively), they began their journey with hard work and a dream to become restaurant owners. For Ed, that dream was realized 23 years later when he became an owner/operator of his first restaurant in 2000. Karen reached the same milestone shortly thereafter.
“Most people don’t realize that Karen and I both start-ed with McDonald’s as crew people” Ed said. “We be-lieve in the business model and worked hard to move up in the McDonald’s system to realize the dream of owning restaurants.”
And that system is the backbone of one of the greatest business stories of our time. In the United States, McDonald’s serves over 26 million people every day. Out of their 14,000 locations, nearly 90% are inde-pendently owned and operated by local business men and women.
“Because almost 90 percent of the U.S. restaurants are locally franchised, McDonald’s is able to be an integral part of the communities we serve” noted Karen. “By leveraging our system, McDonald’s can implement and scale ideas to meet customers’ changing needs and preferences.”
The Donnelly’s are part of the McDonald’s of Miami Val-ley Co-Op which has 74 restaurants in 13 counties throughout Ohio and Indiana.
Their first restaurant, however was not in Logan County, but fortunately for our community their growth brought them here.
“As a McDonald’s owner/operator, I was offered an op-portunity to grow with McDonald’s in Logan County. Prior to the Bellefontaine restaurants, we owned one location in Hilliard, Ohio. Although I knew relatively little about Bellefontaine before becoming a business owner in the area, I couldn’t be more proud to be a part of this wonderful community,” commented Ed.
The Donnelly’s demonstrate that gratitude through the many ways they are involved in the community, including their involvement in local sports and sponsoring baseball and soccer teams. In addition to other charitable involve-ment, Ed has served as a board member for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Miami Valley Region.
It is evident their culture of gratitude and service has permeated their businesses. On a recent trip to McDonald’s while on my own with my three kids (a guaranteed scenario for chaos as any parent knows) the staff at the McDon-ald’s north restaurant went out of their way three times to offer help and service to make sure my experience was good. It was one of those customer service experiences you remember for a long time.
Ed and Karen also view their involvement in the Chamber of Commerce as an important role as community leaders.
“Karen and I both believe it’s important to be an involved community member and the Logan County Chamber of Commerce provides us a channel to do just that. The greatest benefits we receive from our membership are the op-portunities to network within the community, share in developing leaders for the future and help mold the city and county as a great place.”
The Logan County Chamber is proud to recognize Ed and Karen’s success and are thankful for their contribution to the community and our organization. Please join us in congratulating Ed and Karen as the July Business of the Month.