Leadership Series: Secret to Penn Station’s Success — Aggressive Conservatism

Leadership Series: Secret to Penn Station’s Success — Aggressive Conservatism

By Barbara L. Vergetis Lundin, Assistant Editor

Craig Dunaway spent nearly as much of his life working as an accountant as he has leading the successful Penn Station East Coast Subs. In August, Dunaway will celebrate 17 years at the helm of the national fast-casual chain.

While attending the University of Indiana Southeast, Dunaway set out to pursue a career in accounting, and started out as an accounting intern. After graduating in May 1983, Dunaway became a partner at the same regional accounting firm — McCauley, Nicolas & Company, LLC — where he worked for 16 years.

Before joining Penn State Subs, Dunaway owned interest in Coastal Cheesesteaks, LLC and Louisville Cheesesteaks, LLC — both are Penn Station franchises — and served as the Managing Partner and Secretary/Treasurer of both franchises. In 2011 and 2013, he sold his interests to concentrate solely on running Penn Station. He also had ownership interests in a Papa John's® franchise, where he also served as the Secretary/Treasurer.

Known for its profitability and return on investment, and with 304 locations in 15 states, Penn Station was named the best sandwich chain by the Nation’s Restaurant News in its 2015 Consumer Picks survey. Dunaway shares the secrets to chain’s success below.

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