The CEO of CKE Restaurants, which owns Hardee’s and has its headquarters in Franklin, stepped down Tuesday.

Andrew Puzder, who gained national attention as President Donald Trump’s first nominee for Secretary of Labor, will be replaced by Jason Marker.

Most recently president of Kentucky Fried Chicken U.S., Marker has extensive domestic and international QSR experience and a proven track record of revenue and profit growth, innovation, and brand positioning, according to a CKE press release.

“Jason has tremendous experience in franchising, in the QSR sector, and in positioning and growing iconic brands,”  Puzder, 66, who had served as CKE’s CEO since 2000, said. “I expressed my desire to have CKE plan for succession approximately a year ago, and I could not be more pleased to have Jason Marker selected to be the company’s next leader,” Puzder stated.

Puzder withdrew his nomination for labor secretary in February after losing Republican support. His confirmation was put off track by allegations of domestic abuse form his ex-wife in the 1980s and later withdrawn, as well as his employment of an undocumented housekeeper.

CKE last year announced that it would move into a new headquarters in Franklin from California.

It planned to invest $5 million in the relocation that will create more than 100 jobs in Williamson County.

The holding company, which already has two Tennessee offices and has several restaurants in the state, will consolidate to 6700 Tower Circle. There it will rent 47,030 square feet on 1.5 floors in the newly developed Franklin Park business center.


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