First Watch Restaurants Hires New Chief Financial Officer

Award-winning Breakfast, Brunch and Lunch restaurant First Watch today announced the hiring of Paul Hineman as chief financial officer.

Hineman joins First Watch with 20 years experience in the restaurant and finance industry. As chief financial officer for First Watch, Hineman will oversee the financial strategy and management of the restaurant company, which now boasts more than 100 locations in 15 states and has plans for nearly 300 by 2017.

A recognized leader in the industry, Hineman most recently served as the executive vice president for the National Restaurant Association. He also has held senior finance and accounting positions with Cracker Barrel Old Country Store and Planet Hollywood International.

“With Paul’s experience and proven success in the industry, he will be a welcome addition to our executive team,” said Ken Pendery, chief executive officer for First Watch. “It’s no secret that we’ve been expanding rather rapidly throughout the U.S., and we expect that growth to continue. Paul will help maintain strong financial management as we move forward.”

Coming off a banner year in 2012, First Watch’s aggressive growth strategy continued in 2013 with the opening of nine new restaurants in the first half of the year and entry into the Atlanta metro market. Plans call for at least seven more to be open before the end of the year.

Hineman is a certified management accountant and holds a bachelor of arts in economics from Wilfrid Laurier University in Ontario, Canada. He also is an advisory board member for Cornell University’s Center for Hospitality Research, the Food and Beverage Leadership Exchange and the Restaurant Leadership Conference.

For First Watch franchise information, visit

First Watch Restaurants Hires New Chief Financial OfficerCelebrating its 30th year in 2013, First Watch specializes in award-winning, made-to-order Breakfast, Brunch and Lunch. A recipient of more than 200 “Best Breakfast” and “Best Brunch” accolades, First Watch offers traditional favorites such as omelets, pancakes, sandwiches and salads, to unique specialty items like the fan-favorite Chickichanga and Fresh Fruit Crepes. It is currently the largest and fastest-growing daytime-only restaurant concept in the U.S. with more than 100 restaurants in 15 states and additional units under development as part of the Bradenton, Fla.-based company’s aggressive growth strategy. For more information, visit