Andrew Puzder is the chief executive of CKE Restaurants, which owns Hardee’s, Carl’s Jr, Green Burrito, and Red Burrito fast food restaurants. CKE has a total of more than 3,300 franchises in 42 states and more than 25 foreign countries and territories. Puzder has been leading the company since 2000. The company was seriously struggling in the 1990s. Puzder is credited with turning the company around and growing them to what they are today.
Puzder is a noted critic of minimum wage increases and supports the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. He was an active Trump supporter, giving hundreds of thousands dollars to the now President-elect’s campaign and the Republican National Committee. However, before supporting Trump he also contributed to the Rubio, Fiorina, Petty, Walker, and Bush campaigns. In the late 1980s, he supported a Missouri law to combat abortion.
Trump, in a statement announcing the appointment said, “Andy Puzder has created and boosted the careers of thousands of Americans, and his extensive record fighting for workers makes him the ideal candidate to lead the Department of Labor.”
Puzder will be 66 years old when Trump takes office and was born in Cleveland, Ohio, home of this year’s Republican National Convention. He holds degrees from Washington University in St. Louis and its law school. After law school, he served as a commercial trial lawyer in St. Louis.
Some of Puzder’s awards include Food Service Operator of the Year Silver Plate Award, Coach Arts Man of the Year, and the Golden Chain Award from the Nation’s Restaurant News. He also sits on the National Advisory Board of Washington University School of Law.
At the 2012 Republican National Convention, Puzder led the Platform Committee’s Sub-Committee on the Economy, Job Creation, and the Debt. He was also an economic adviser to 2012 Republican candidate Mitt Romney.
He is the author of the book Job Creation: How It Really Works And Why The Government Doesn’t Understand It in which “The authors provide a framework for instilling strong optimism among U.S. businesses to renew domestic investments in profit-making opportunities that will create millions of new jobs in the coming years.”
The mission of the Department of Labor is “To foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.”
The current Secretary of Labor is Thomas Perez, appointed by Obama in 2013. Former Labor Secretary Elaine Chao will also be serving in the Trump administration as the Secretary of Transportation.
Image Credits: GETTY IMAGES