SPARTANBURG, S.C. (November 10, 2016) – Denny’s (Nasdaq:DENN) is pleased to announce that Profiles in Diversity Journal® has named April Kelly-Drummond, Director of Diversity Affairs and Multicultural Engagement at Denny’s, as one of its 2016 Women Worth Watching. Kelly-Drummond’s acknowledgment will be featured in the 15th Anniversary edition of the magazine. She joins past Denny’s recipient, Jill Van Pelt, who received the award in 2015.
“April has been an invaluable and powerful leader in Denny’s diversity efforts both internally with our employees and externally with national and local civil rights and minority organizations throughout her more than 20 years with the company. She has led the development of programs and initiatives to further our commitment to diversity, and we are thrilled that her efforts have been recognized by Profiles in Diversity Journal,” said John Miller, President and Chief Executive Officer of Denny’s. “April embodies Denny’s corporate commitment to diversity and on behalf of the team I want to say congratulations on this well-deserved honor.”
Profiles in Diversity Journal aims to promote diversity and inclusion within companies and institutions, and its Women Worth Watching award highlights women who make significant strides toward making a difference in their companies and in the world. The notable, highly respected women named to the list are nominated by their employers in an effort to shine light upon their impressive career accomplishments.
Kelly-Drummond has served as Denny’s Director of Diversity Affairs since March 2008. She joined Denny’s in 1994 as an executive assistant to the Company’s Chief Diversity Officer and spent a significant amount of time on the road assisting in the Company’s diversity initiatives. Today her role as the Director of Diversity Affairs and Multicultural Engagement at Denny's, Kelly-Drummond serves as the key liaison with major civil rights organizations and builds relationships with local, regional and national minority organizations. Prior to being named Director of Diversity Affairs, Kelly-Drummond held various leadership roles in community relations, public affairs and diversity within the Company. Kelly-Drummond holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in organizational development from College of Charleston and currently sits on the board for a local nonprofit organization.
In 2015, Van Pelt, Chief People Officer and Senior Vice President of Human Resources at Denny’s, was named to the 2015 Women Worth Watching list. She is responsible for all human resource functions, including compensation, benefits, recruiting, employee relations, organizational and executive development, human resource systems, payroll, and local community and charitable activities. Van Pelt joined Denny's in April 2006 as Senior Director of Total Rewards and in 2008 was named Vice President of Human Resources. Prior to joining Denny's, Van Pelt held positions in accounting, human resources systems, and human resources for Maytag, Coastal Corporation and Dynegy. Van Pelt holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting and French from Clarke College and a master’s degree in human resources management from Houston Baptist University. Van Pelt is actively involved in the local community and sits on several community and non-profit boards.
Miller added: “At Denny’s, we pride ourselves on advocating for professionals who represent the empowerment of women in the organization, and we are delighted that Jill was also recognized and named to the list of remarkable Women Worth Watching in 2015. Jill has played a critical role in improving our hiring process and has helped to create a more diverse and passionate employee base that continues to improve the guest experience and gives back to our local communities. We are thankful for her contributions to our company and congratulate her on this much deserved recognition.”
Denny’s is one of America’s largest full-service family restaurant chains, currently operating over 1,700 franchised, licensed and company-owned restaurants across the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, New Zealand, Mexico, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Guam, the United Arab Emirates, Chile, Curaçao, El Salvador, and Trinidad and Tobago, and the Philippines. For further information on Denny's, including news releases, please visit the Denny’s website at www.dennys.com or the brand’s social channels via Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, Instagram or YouTube.