Brinker Creates CMO Title for Johnson

DALLAS Restaurant operator Brinker International has named Rebecca Johnson to the new position of chief marketing and brand officer, a step up from her previous title of evp, marketing and brand development.

Dallas-based Brinker operates Chili’s Grill & Bar, Romano’s Macaroni Grill, On the Border Mexican Grill & Cantina and Maggiano’s Little Italy. Brinker spent more than $110 million advertising its various properties in 2005, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

Johnson joined Brinker in 2004 as svp of marketing and brand development.

“Over the last two years, Becky has created a heightened awareness of consumer preferences across our enterprise,” said Doug Brooks, Brinker chairman and CEO. “Through these efforts, she has enhanced our brands’ ability to continually innovate with new products and services that fulfill our customers’ desire for a great dining experience.”

Johnson’s previous experience includes 16 years at PepsiCo, where she was vp of marketing for the Doritos and Cheetos brands of Frito-Lay North America. She also served as vp of multicultural marketing, where she led a team that developed products and programs targeting Latino audiences through product development, merchandising, advertising and grass-roots marketing. She began her marketing career at Ogilvy & Mather, working on accounts such as Shell Oil and Compaq.

Johnson is on the board of directors of the National Latina Leadership Institute. She graduated from Louisiana State University with a bachelor’s degree in communications and received a bachelor’s degree in applied business administration from Dallas Baptist University. She also holds a graduate degree in marketing from Southern Methodist University and graduated from the Advanced Management Program of Harvard Business School.