Stepan Kosatyi

McDonald’s CEO Ousted Over Relationship With Staffer

McDonald’s CEO Ousted Over Relationship With Staffer

McDonald’s has fired its chief executive officer because of a consensual relationship he had with an employee.

The fast food giant announced that its board voted late last week to fire Steve Easterbrook after investigating his relationship with the unnamed employee. Easterbrook, who has been the company’s CEO since March 2015, also resigned from McDonald’s board. He wrote in an email to employees on Sunday (November 3) that he had violated company policy on personal conduct.

“This was a mistake,” Easterbrook wrote in an email to company employees. “Given the values of the company, I agree with the board that it is time for me to move on.”

McDonald’s revealed that Chris Kempczinski, most recently president of McDonald’s USA, has been named president and chief executive officer, effective immediately. Kempczinski has also been elected to the the company’s Board of Directors. He first joined McDonald’s in 2015, overseeing global strategy, business development and innovation.

Kempczinski said, “I’m thrilled to be leading this incredible company. Working alongside our talented team, our Board, our franchisees and suppliers, I am committed to upholding our rich heritage of serving our customers and driving value for our shareholders and other stakeholders. As one of the world’s leading brands, McDonald’s makes a difference in the lives of people every day. We have a responsibility not only to serve great food, but to make it responsibly and to enrich the communities in which we operate. I am energized by this challenge and look forward to guiding McDonald’s continued success.”

As a result of his appointment, McDonald’s also announced that Joe Erlinger has taken over Kempczinski’s previous position. Erlinger was most recently president of international operated markets for the company.

“Joe is a respected leader who is returning to the U.S. after working around the world for McDonald’s,” said Kempczinski. “He has a proven track record of driving strong results through collaboration with franchisees and a relentless focus on the customer. I am proud and excited that one of my first moves as CEO is to announce his appointment, and am confident in all he will bring to our U.S. business.”