Saturday, July 13, 2024

Local Chick-fil-A Franchisee Celebrates 30 Years in Bossier

by BIZ Magazine

Stacey Tinsley | Bossier Press-Tribune

John Roden started his career with Chick-fil-A at the Pierre Bossier Mall location in 1982 as a team member. In 1994, John became the operator of that same location. In 2003, he opened the Youree Drive location and then left Youree Drive to open the Bossier City location on Beene Boulevard in 2007, where he has been serving since.

On Thursday June 27, 2024, Bossier City Chick-fil-A current team members, community leaders, friends, family, and former team members celebrated John Roden by sharing their special memories of him. Bossier City Mayor Tommy Chandler also presented John with a proclamation making June 27 “John Roden Day.”

“God knew that Bossier City needed the Roden family. Bossier City’s free-standing Chick-fil-A store opened in 2007, with John Roden as its owner/operator. Chicken has never been the same in Bossier City. John, thank you for striving for excellence and leading with integrity and kindness,” said Chandler.

Another big surprise for Roden during Thursday’s celebration was an official certificate of acknowledgment from Louisiana Governor Jeff Landry recognizing Roden for 30 years as a Chick-fil-A owner.The certificate of acknowledgment was presented during the celebration event by Shane Chatham of Bossier City, who is the regional director of the Louisiana Governor’s Office of Rural Development for the Northwest Region and who also serves as the governor’s liaison in our part of the state.

Those speaking and making comments at the celebration event made it clear that through the years of his working at Chick-fil-A (CFA), Roden has been an inspiration to many people, especially his past and present staff.

Michael Tew, a former CFA team member of Roden’s from 1994-1998, is now a video editor at KDFW Fox 4 in Dallas/Fort Worth and is also the owner of Michael Tew Health Coaching.

Tew credits the skills he learned from working under Roden at CFA for shaping his career success today.

“I learned that if you work hard and lean into what you value in life, you really can do whatever you set your mind to. I also learned to work through the struggle; owning your own business is a constant balancing act between life, family, and business. I saw him work through life and not give up on his business and somehow balance it all. Seeing him never give up showed me that giving up is never an option for me. I also saw John achieve excellence within Chick-fil-A by going above and beyond what was expected,” Tew said.

Tew continued, saying, “Right now, I’m a video editor at KDFW Fox 4, the Fox television affiliate in Dallas, Texas. I’ve been there 20 years and have won seven Emmy Awards for video editing and have also won numerous other journalism awards across the state of Texas. I also recently started my own LLC and started a health coaching business where I help people achieve the health of their dreams. After losing 170 pounds over the last five years, I am passionate about helping others achieve lifelong weight loss through behavior change and working on new healthier habits.”

“I know that working under John at Chick-fil-A built a rock-steady foundation that I’ve built my own success upon. That foundation is built upon the consistency that I saw John build his own business with and still balance all that life threw his way,” Tew concluded.

To John and his family, Tew simply says, “Thank you,” as he is forever grateful for their belief in him and for giving him a strong work foundation to succeed in life.

“‘Thank you’ doesn’t seem to be strong enough, but it’s all I’ve got! I have no idea how you put up with so many teenagers that, in reality, have your business in their hands, but you really do keep it all together. Always know that the example you show through your actions made a lifelong impact on my life. I’m forever grateful,” said Tew.

Current Chick-fil-A in Bossier City General Manager Stephanie Faulk said, “My journey with Chick-fil-A started 26 years ago and has been incredibly rewarding. From the early days of learning the fundamentals to now, I’ve grown both professionally and personally. The challenges I’ve faced and the successes I’ve achieved have shaped me into a more knowledgeable and resilient individual. It’s been a fulfilling experience, and I’m excited to see what the future holds.”

Someone who has been with Roden the whole entire time of his working at CFA is his wife, Michele.

“The past 30 years have been such a blessing to us. We were young, newly married, and had no idea what the future would hold. We had confidence in the brand, and looking back, we were pioneers of the Chick-fil-A brand as it has come to be known today. So much has changed in 30 years. What always resonates with me is that we are forever thankful for the customers of the Bossier community (and Shreveport, not to leave them out—we were there for 4 1/2 years) who became more than customers; they became friends! My next thought is that I am always appreciative of the employees we have had, those that have moved on to other careers, those we had for a season, and those that have been with us over 20 years. We would not be where we are without them! John and I were together at the movies (I know, way back), and we ran into a couple of his former employees. They spoke to us, we asked about their current activities, and they said, ‘You know, you were tough on us as an employer, and now we understand why! Thank you for teaching us all that you did,’” said Michele Roden.

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