Matthew joined ZAO in March 2000 as Vice President of Operations responsible for all aspects of day-to-day restaurant operations. He took over as President and CEO in March of 2004. Prior to joining ZAO Matthew was Director of Operations for Apple Bay East, franchisee of Applebee's Neighborhood Grill and Bar. There he was responsible for all restaurant operations and growing the franchise from two to nine units in four short years. In addition, he was a founding member and first President of the Franchise Technology Council, which can be credited with helping drive the technology agenda for America's largest casual dining chain. Prior to Apple Bay East, Matthew held management positions with the Legal Sea Foods chain and Acapulco Restaurants. Furthermore, Matthew brings entrepreneurial experience to the team, as he owned his own restaurant and bar while still in college. Matthew earned a bachelors degree from the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration and serves on the Board of Directors for the California Restaurant Association.