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Company Timeline

Hover over a date to learn more about us!

2005

In 2005, Thad left to purchase his first Golden Corral franchise in Winder, Georgia, becoming the youngest Golden Corral franchisee in company history. He conducted a massive remodel and became the first franchisee to ever win the National Sales Volume Increase award in back-to-back years and winning the Franchisee of the Year award in 2006.

2008

In 2008 Thad began consulting for The Bridge Learning Center and focusing on building a platform for franchising. This early consulting relationship was the foundation for his entrance into the childcare space through the eventual purchase of all Bridge Learning Center locations forming a parent company Scallions Childcare Management.

2013

In 2013 Scallions Childcare acquired Sunbrook Academy and Sunbrook Academy Franchising, a 12 unit preschool brand in Atlanta, Georgia.

2015

In 2015 Scallions Childcare sold The Bridge Learning Center and Sunbrook Academy businesses to a national private equity buyer. Thad began speaking nationally on the value of brand design and operations improvements as a key driver to business success.

2016

In 2016 Better Beans Branding was born to address the need for a turn key provider of brand development, interior design, and signage services to support restaurants, childcare, and retail clients in their need to refine and enhance their facilities and branding.

2017

2017 Better Beans has served fifteen clients in its first two operational years.

2019

In 2019 Better Beans has served more than eighty locations across multiple industries across the U.S. helping to add financial value, increase team morale, and deliver impactful  beautifully designed spaces.

2020

In 2020 Better Beans updates their logo and website.

2021

Better Beans has doubled in size and has engaged in over 75 projects.

Meet the Beans

Thad Joiner

Chief Executive Officer, Managing Partner
  • Hometown: Lilburn, GA
  • Lives in: Braselton, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Despite my desire to be a fordhook, I am without a doubt a coffee bean: a morning man who gets 90% of his work done prior to noon, full of energy and packing a big punch whether you want it or not.

ABOUT:

Thad was born and raised in Gwinnett County, Georgia, and still lives there with his wife, Emily, and two children, Trace and Mia. He served in the United States Marine Corps Reserves while attending Valdosta State University.

Thad founded his first company, TS Express, and bought his first restaurant at age 21. It quickly grew and he sold to partners after just one year.

After selling in 1997, Thad moved back to Atlanta and began his career with The Winston Group, a Golden Corral franchise group. There he served in many roles, opening seven locations over nine years and winning many awards, including the National Sales Volume Increase award three times.

Neel Sengupta

Chief Operating Officer, Managing Partner
  • Hometown: New York
  • Current town: Lilburn, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Garbanzo. When I was growing up, there were these bite-size deep-fried snacks that were always on the table or counter. Grab a handful as you walk by, even if you weren’t hungry. It was comfort by bean.

ABOUT:

Neel has worked for twenty years on successful teams across multiple industries including hospitality, operations consulting, and, more recently, preschool management and franchise development. In that time his own entrepreneurial endeavors have shaped his perspective which helps serve Better Beans clients by offering experience and appreciation of the owner’s mindset and needs. Neel’s understanding of customer flow and interaction within your business space comes from years of measuring, monitoring, and nurturing thousands of customer relationships across many different business environments. Neel has been involved dozens of remodels and ground-up construction projects—from restaurant and hospitality spaces to schools and airport concessions.

Neel is a dad to daughters, Maya and Grace, and husband to Amy, an operations manager in higher education.

Jordan Woodruff

Vice President of Design, Managing Partner
  • Hometown: Wichita, KS
  • Lives in: Athens, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Jelly Bean. They are colorful and every single one is different, like our clients and design choices.

ABOUT:

Jordan’s passion for great design comes through from the start of a project and will live on for years to come. Jordan’s attention to detail and skill for bringing great designs to life has made an impact on both residential and commercial projects from her work in the restaurant and hospitality sectors, in preschools, and in healthcare to her work in custom multi-family residential builds and custom luxury homes. Jordan dreams about compelling design and enjoys working with business owners whose vision and voice can be shared through her work. Jordan has been managing construction and delivering great interior design for almost twenty years.

When she isn’t drafting renderings and managing construction projects she’s busy being the mom to Denley and Ivy and wife to world-traveling classical guitarist, Dusty Woodruff.

KatieLea Conwell

Director of Operations, Managing Partner
  • Hometown: Austin, TX
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Mexican jumping bean

ABOUT:

KatieLea discovered her passion for collaboration early in life one day during Mrs. Chatham’s 5th-grade social studies class. The assignment was to create a story about a dog with magical powers – the ’90s were weird. After about five minutes of working quietly at her desk, she couldn’t keep quiet anymore and began excitedly brainstorming all of her story ideas with her tablemates. It wasn’t long before her tale had captured the attention of the class and the teacher asked that everyone return to their own work. Slightly defeated, but energized with fresh ideas, KatieLea got back to penning The Great Blue Dog Adventure, quite certain a Nobel Prize in Literature would soon follow.

Alas, most adult projects don’t involve magical dogs, but KatieLea still brings the same level of excitement to managing the process of every creative project she signs her name to. While KatieLea could happily talk about the algorithms and automations of operational systems with anyone who’s interested (spoiler alert: it’s not most people’s jam), her favorite part of the job is figuring out how to make large, convoluted processes run more effectively by strategizing with the people who are involved in the process.

Savannah Fordham

Head of Brand Development
  • Hometown: Alpharetta, GA
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Vanilla Bean. Classic and sweet, the vanilla bean is a foundational flavor in almost all of her favorite treats – and it comes with a beautiful orchid flower!

ABOUT:

Growing up with a love for drawing, Savannah has cultivated her artistic passions and gone on to pursue graphic design, branding, editorial design, and illustration. Savannah’s love for design has shown through a number of projects in a range of industries such as fashion, law, restaurant, and non-profit. Whenever she is taking on a project, Savannah likes to strategize new ways to rework the problem at hand and use design as a solution. Most of all, Savannah enjoys using design as a platform to share stories behind brands and people in a compelling and universal way.

Whenever she is in need of some inspiration, Savannah enjoys hiking in North Georgia, mastering a new yoga pose, or consulting a new book.

Niasia Ferguson

Interior Designer
  • Hometown: Lynchburg, VA
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Vanilla Bean. While it was a tough-fought battle between the Vanilla Bean and Cocoa Bean, the classic Vanilla Bean wins it for me any day of the week.

ABOUT:

Niasia began developing her interest in design and other creative outlets at a young age, primarily fashion design. One would either find her designing new clothing lines, perfecting her drawing and painting skills, or more often than not, rearranging her bedroom furniture at 3 am. It wasn’t until later on when she began binge-watching HGTV with her mom that Niasia rediscovered her love for design and shifted her focus to interiors. Her real passion is in helping clients create beautiful and functional interiors that will serve them for years to come.

When not living. in her dream design world, she enjoys cheering on the Georgia Bulldogs as a proud UGA alum, spending great, quality time with her friends and family, and getting her hands on a new design book.

Leah Wirtz

Director of Interior Design
  • Hometown: Gadsten, AL
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Lima Bean

ABOUT:

While Leah has always had an artistic flair—she has a love of community theatre and marching band— her career has developed from broadcast news to consultancy and project management eventually finding her way back to her first love: design. She has a passion for creating a well-thought-out environment that accomplishes her clients’ needs as well as showcases their crafted aesthetic. Given her diverse background, Leah provides a unique perspective for the design process with her experience in corporate settings, as well as medical and financial interiors. When not in the studio, you can most likely find Leah gardening or lost in a book.

Keira Douget

Sr. Project Manager
  • Hometown: Atlanta, GA
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Robusta Coffee Bean: This is the kind of coffee bean they use in espresso. It reminds me of warm spring mornings, productivity, and sparking creativity.

ABOUT:

Keira’s work has been wide in variety and culture. She loves immersing herself in new situations and finding solutions or more lucrative ways to achieve everybody’s vision. She has worked with many different types of projects spanning from Atlanta to Prague.

For Keira, the magic is in taking a vision and turning it into a reality. She first discovered this passion when she was a child redecorating her bedroom. Keira would move furniture, pull down her posters, and rearrange everything in the room to make a completely new space. This is when she realized that all you needed was a vision and the discipline to follow through. From here, she began planning, decorating her agendas, and keeping to-do lists. This. has become a way of keeping herself feeling productive and empowered.

As she’s gotten older, she has begun to understand that most projects are much bigger than rearranging her room, however, she still brings the same creative, optimistic, and determined energy to the table. Keira has come to recognize that by collaborating with other people, learning, and making visions come to life, her personal vision has come to life too.

Vince Williams

Signage & Production / Lead Installer
  • Hometown: Germany
  • Current town: Norcross, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Black Beans

ABOUT:

Vince was born in Germany with upbringings in Colorado, Kansas, and Georgia. After graduating from Savannah State University, he started shadowing a master installer his first year. Over the years he has continued to help Better Beans ”make it happen” in the signage department.

When he’s not working, Vince loves to spend time with his wife, two sons, and dog. He also loves the outdoors and being in nature.

 

 

Lyndsey Ward

Graphic Designer
  • Hometown: Auburn, AL
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Butter Bean. This was a staple at every Sunday lunch at my ​grandmother’s house.

ABOUT:

From the start, it was evident that Lyndsey thrived by thinking differently and moving to her own beat. Aside from her childhood love of telling stories and creating new visions with her fashion plates, Lyndsey’s first serious creative outlet was photography. Her first camera was only 4 megapixels, but she continued to grow in skill and love of photography and moved on to 35mm film cameras and beyond. This creative passion led Lyndsey to a degree in fine art, starting her own photography business, and later a masters in graphic design.

When Lyndsey isn’t photographing or creating design solutions, she can be found spending time with her dog, Zuzu, or relaxing with a new embroidery project. She also loves to travel, explore new places, and meet new people whenever she can.

Steve Dyer

Director of Construction
  • Hometown: Acworth, GA
  • Current town: Ackworth, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Cool Beans. It’s one of my favorite sayings from when I was coaching youth baseball and football.

ABOUT:

Steve’s love of all things construction began in 1981, and ever since, he’s thrived on transforming blueprints into breathtaking realities. The thrill of overcoming challenges and witnessing projects come to life fuels his fire.

Steve has been married to his wife Donna for 33 years and has two sons, Stevey and Scotty, and 4 grandchildren that keep him busy in his free time. A true Georgia Bulldogs devotee, you’ll rarely find Steve without a UGA shirt proudly on display. Go Dawgs!

 

 

Rosa Hernandez

Accountant
  • Hometown: Dallas, TX
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Edamame

ABOUT:

Rosa has been meeting the accounting needs of businesses for over 10 years. She began her career in a small startup company, training under a CPA where she gained valuable experience in accounting, bookkeeping, cash flow and budgeting. She prides herself on being great team player, detail analyst, and efficient in time management. Over the years she has helped businesses streamline accounting processes while maintaining accuracy and financial integrity of all accounting functions.

When she is not working, you can find her spending time in the great outdoors with her husband and two children. Rosa loves to travel to the beach and the mountains where she can enjoy great scenery with her family

 

 

James Andrews

Install Coordinator and Logistic Support
  • Hometown: Roswell, GA
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Black Beans. I grew up eating black beans every day after school, so my body runs on these. Often considered a superfood, they’re loaded with nutrients and sustained energy. Did I mention how tasty they are?

ABOUT:

James was homegrown in Roswell, Georgia where he takes immense pride in his family and community. The sweet, southern culture instilled in him to build relationships face-to-face, so interacting with customers is his specialty.

He studied Environmental Economics at UGA to learn obsessively about how to incorporate sustainability into any area of life. James strives to always take an efficient, balanced, and durable approach in business as well as in his personal life.

Kaitlyn Telfor

Interior Designer
  • Hometown: Detroit, MI
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Black Beans

ABOUT:

Growing up, Kaitlyn always shared a love for design. When she had the opportunity to attend college out of state to study Interior Design, she took it with no hesitation. While in school, she interned in Atlanta and ended up falling in love with the city’s design diversity. After graduation, she decided to further pursue her career in Atlanta and has worked in both residential and commercial design.

In her free time, Kaitlyn enjoys going to the gym, listening to music, and finding new restaurants.

 

 

Chantol Drennan

Project Manager
  • Hometown: Eulles, TX
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Cocoa Bean

ABOUT:

Chantol thrives in a team driven, collaborative environment. Her experience in the education sector has honed her ability to assess complex situations, identify opportunities for improvement, and implement streamlined processes that drive efficiency and success. When she is not working, Chantol enjoys coaching youth volleyball and taking her dog Jaxson on hikes.

 

 

Christiann Bramble

Head of Media Production
  • Hometown: St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

Vanilla Bean – I mean, have you ever tried vanilla bean ice cream?

ABOUT:

Straight out of the U.S. Virgin Islands Christiann had a love for the game of baseball, his passion for the game drove him to stay around the game. This had led him to photography and videography for his media business NeXup Baseball. He always had a feel for being creative from a very young age, whether it is from writing, photography, or simply being himself! His skills and mindset have transferred him over to working with Better Beans which allows him to be his fun and creative self! Christiann provides visuals for the Beans that allow the world to see our innovative work. Besides being a part of the creative team, he also takes his skills on-site to work hands-on with the install team.

Outside of work, Christiann is a baseball coach. He enjoys sharing his knowledge of the game with future generations. His favorite team is the Chicago Cubs and his love for the Cubs has grown since he was 5 years old watching WGN with his dad while growing up. When not working or participating in America’s Favorite Pasttime, Christiann loves taking walks and hanging out with his family and friends.

 

Jason Glabecki

Graphic Design
  • Hometown: Cleveland, OH
  • Current town: Atlanta, GA
FAVORITE BEAN:

My rescue cats’ toe beans. My mother rescued and cared for her when she starting coming around their house and I adopted her when they moved away. Wish I adopted her sooner!

ABOUT

Born in the north and raised for half his life in the south, Jason has miraculously avoided developing a southern drawl in the way he talks. Submerging himself in action figures, videogames, heavy metal and drawing from a young age allowed him to pour creativity, challenge normalcy and completely strip the non-essentials from his life. In both his personal life and work, this has resulted in a very focused creative delivery and a true understanding of what a project requires from the look and function.