Foundation committed to finding permanent homes for the more than 150,000 children waiting in North America’s foster care systems
Columbus, Ohio — The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, a national non-profit public charity, today welcomed Mike Zak as a member of its board of trustees, serving a three-year term. Zak is the owner of The Wenzak Companies, a Wendy’s® franchise organization, which owns 35 restaurants in Illinois, Indiana and Iowa.
“The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption is truly Dave Thomas’ legacy,” said Zak. “As a Wendy’s franchise owner who had the honor of knowing Dave personally, I can’t think of a better way to honor my friend than to serve in this role and encourage others to support the Foundation’s commitment to finding permanent, loving homes for children waiting to be adopted from foster care.”
Mike joined Wendy’s in 1985 as a Regional Training Director. After working for the company for 10 years, he became a franchise owner and was honored as Franchisee of the Year in 2016. Mike currently serves as chairman of the new Wendy’s Franchise Association.
“Mike has been a passionate leader in rallying franchise owners across the Wendy’s system to support the Foundation’s mission,” said Mary Schell, Chief Public Affairs Officer for The Wendy’s Company and chair of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption’s board of trustees. “I look forward to working with Mike to grow the Foundation’s impact in the years ahead.”
Through its signature program, Wendy’s Wonderful Kids®, the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption provides funding to adoption agencies to hire recruiters who implement an evidence-based, child-focused recruitment model. A rigorous, five-year evaluation revealed that the model is up to three times more effective at serving children who have been in foster care the longest, including teenagers, children with special needs and siblings.
To date, more than 475 Wendy’s Wonderful Kids recruiters have found forever homes for more than 9,500 children in foster care across North America.
“I’m grateful for Mike’s service on the board at a time when advancing the Foundation’s mission is more important than ever,” said Rita Soronen, President & CEO of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. “He will provide valuable leadership in helping the Foundation to serve significantly more children waiting in foster care, all of whom need our help right now.”
Mike and his family live in Grapevine, Texas.
About the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption
The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption is a national nonprofit public charity dedicated exclusively to finding permanent homes for the more than 150,000 children waiting in North America’s foster care systems. Created by Wendy’s founder Dave Thomas, who was adopted, the Foundation implements evidence-based, results-driven national service programs, foster care adoption awareness campaigns and innovative grantmaking. To learn more, visit davethomasfoundation.org.