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Family Business: Meet the Mother and Two Daughters Making Millions Selling Burgers

When Patricia made what would become a life altering decision, she was working as a rehabilitation therapist, and her husband was an LAPD police officer.

Patricia Williams (middle), with daughters Nicole Enearu ( Right) and Kerri Harper-Howie ( Left). Photo Credit: Jay L. Clendenin, LA Times

Having several family members that already had franchises of their own, Patricia Williams took the leap and as they say the rest was history. Now, thirty years later, she and her daughters have built an empire with their McDonalds franchise, having opened their thirteenth store in April 2017.

All of their locations are based in the Los Angeles area, with up to 700 employees and a combined revenue of almost $50 million annually.

When Patricia made what would become a life-altering decision, she was working as a rehabilitation therapist, and her husband was an LAPD police officer. Having made the decision to try their hands at the fast food world, they both cashed out their retirements and took out a small business loan. In 1984, they opened their very first restaurant located in Compton.

They knew there would be struggles but they quickly learned just how hard it would be. In order to be certified to own a McDonalds, the operators were required to take classes and actually work in the restaurant itself.

Patricia remarked to the LA Times about how grueling the process was. She had to take a three-year course while raising two young children. Knowing it was meant to be, Williams jumped at the chance and states that she never regretted the decision for a moment.

In the 80’s, McDonalds was a quickly growing restaurant chain. In no time Williams and her husband were proud owners of a second store. However, a short time later her and her husband got divorced, and she bought out his half of the company.

She continued in the following years to focus on the marketing of the two stores, which allowed her in 1995 to sell both stores, and then turn around and buy five more. With this latest purchase, she was the sole owner of every McDonalds in Compton.

In the early 2000’s, although it was never really Patricia’s plan, both her daughters got involved with the business. Deciding to make a career change, daughter Nicole completed the franchise training program and purchased her own restaurant. She later went on to attain the distinction of being the first female, African American Chair for the McDonalds Southern California Regional Leadership Council.

Daughter Kerri, who was a lawyer, offered legal and HR advice to her mother’s franchises, but very quickly realized she wanted to be the boss and owner of a restaurant as well. It was then that she completed the required training through the McDonald’s Next Generation program—a program for the children of McDonald’s owners who wanted their own franchise as well.

Daniel Gerzina/Eater Chicago

The trio’s franchises are now equipped with the newest technological tools, including touchscreens at each and every table along with self-ordering kiosks. However, customers are still offered the choice of ordering at the counter, with their HD digital menu board. All of the locations offer Wi-Fi , as well as digital and interactive play places for children.

Mother and daughters feel that by implementing these newest technologies, they are showing their ongoing commitment to enhance and contribute to their local communities.

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