LABELLE, FL. -- McDonald's owners are made, not born into the business. Steve Nisbet, Jr., who says he has "ketchup in his veins", just completed the demanding McDonald's Ownership Training program that qualifies him as an owner-operator. He joins his mother Debra and CEO father Steve, Sr. as a partner in Nisbet Enterprises, owner of the McDonald's restaurants in Belle Glade, LaBelle and Clewiston.
"My father has been with McDonald's since before I was born, and a McDonald's owner for 22 years,"said Steve, Jr. "I grew up around McDonald's and saw my dad working hard and getting rewarded for what he put into the business. I knew early on I would be in the business some day."
Steve, Jr., 32, is supervisor of restaurant operations and his wife, Amanda, is supervisor of the back office. His sister, Shelly Carnevalino, is general manager of one of their McDonald's and her husband Anthony is the company training manager and in charge of equipment and maintenance.
Steve, Jr. was recently certified as a McDonald's franchisee through a unique, but rigorous program offered to family members of owner/operators. Applicants must complete a customized curriculum that combines hands-on work at crew and management levels, academic courses at Hamburger University and credit for life experience. Hamburger University trains about 5,000 students a year in restaurant operations and management with college credit-level courses. The series of week-long courses took him two and a half years to complete at his own pace.
"McDonald's is very aware that we have families and a life outside of the business," Steve, Jr. said. "With two children, active community involvement, and the business, it takes some juggling of responsibilities."
Steve said he enjoys following the lead of his father as a community leader with a commitment to helping the community as a sponsor of school activities and sports teams, organizations and events. One of his favorite activities is heading the fundraising rodeo benefiting the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southwest Florida that will be held this year on October 4 in LaBelle, Hendry County. The second annual event features rodeo events including Barrel Racing, Pro Bull Riding and Youth events, along with live music and a Ronald McDonald show.