Sal Lupoli, owner of local franchise Sal’s Pizza, was named to Nations Restaurant News’ list of most influential CEOs in the country alongside CEOs of national chains like Ruth’s Chris, Applebee’s, Taco Bell, and many more.
Nation’s Restaurant News publishes this list annually to showcase CEOs that exhibit a strong sense of leadership, and lead with impact and innovation.
“I am so honored to be included as one of the Most Influential Restaurant CEOs in the country,” says Lupoli. “Throughout the past year, every CEO on this list has faced obstacles and challenges that were impossible to predict. None of us were ready for this pandemic, but we faced it head on and came out stronger. One year later, I am proud to say that not one employee was let go from Sal’s Pizza as a result of COVID-19. I am only as good as the team that surrounds me, and I am thankful for every one of our Sal’s Pizza family members.”
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March of 2020 and the governor of Massachusetts made the decision to restrict all restaurants to takeout only, Sal came up with a plan to avoid layoffs. Within 24 hours of the governor’s mandate, Sal made the executive decision to slash all pizza prices by 50% through a new program called Pizza with a Purpose. He did this to increase demand for his pizza, which, in turn, would counter the need for layoffs. Sal’s plan worked and Sal’s Pizza has successfully powered through the pandemic.
Sal also launched Pizza for the People, an initiative to donate pizza to front line workers at hospitals, police stations, fire departments and assisted living centers. Since the start of the pandemic, Sal’s Pizza has donated thousands of pizzas to the people helping keep their communities safe throughout this unprecedented year.
In 2020, Sal grew his executive team, bringing on some heavy hitters including Ronald Walker, former Secretary of Labor for Massachusetts, as COO; Fergal Gildea, former Food and Beverage Director for the Revere Hotel in Boston, as Food and Beverage Director; Christie Cartwright, former Director of Marketing for BNEG, as Director of Marketing and Communications; and Edgar Colon, former Human Resources Director at Autojon Group, as VP of Human Resources. In 2021, Sal continues to add more executive-level talent to the growing Sal’s Pizza/Lupoli Companies team.