Zach McLeroy

“This is about enriching the lives of the people that work in the organization, and in doing that also enriching the lives of the guests that we serve every day. It’s less about profit and more about doing good things.”


Zach McLeroy is a 35-year veteran of the hospitality industry. He is co-founder and former CEO of the multi-billion dollar Zaxby’s restaurant brand- which was majority acquired by Goldman Sachs’ private equity in 2020. Zach continues to serve as chairman of the board for the chain, which has its sights set on an expanded footprint both nationally and internationally.

Under Zach’s leadership, Zaxby’s thrived for decades, most recently boasting recognition in industry publications, including a 2021 spot on Forbes’ list as one of the country’s best large employers. Also, in 2021, the Franchise Times recognized Zaxby’s as a Dealmaker of the Year for a new partnership with Goldman Sachs.

Zach co-founded The Leaven Group in 2021 to serve as the impetus for intentional development and community transformation in areas of the south where his roots run deep.  

Zach is passionate about providing opportunities to increase economic mobility through education, training, and social support. He heads up the McLeroy Family Foundation, which provides strategic counsel and financial contributions to select philanthropic and faith-based organizations focused on elevating women, children, and veterans, as well as those working to end homelessness. 

Born and raised in Athens, Georgia, Zach now resides in the Atlanta area. Although he is proud of his incredible professional success, Zach puts his family, three children, and faith at the forefront, keeping them at the core of everything he does.