Taco Bell Corp. is dedicated to championing the next generation of young leaders and cultural rebels and the Brand’s our 30 under 30 list was created to do just that.
Meet 30 game-changing team members, Live Más Scholars, general managers and above restaurant leaders, from across the system all under the age of 30! These young leaders have been recognized by their organizations and peers for going above and beyond and inspiring their teams to bring the best Taco Bell experience to all our fans – each and every day. Most of them have attended leadership programs, and when they’re not in the restaurant, they find ways to take their passion and leadership to a new level in their communities. Congrats to the 2023 30 under 30! Learn more about them below.
Tyler Lawson – Tacala, LLC.
Tyler is a restaurant leader that has been with Taco Bell since 2012. In recent years, Tyler has led his team to become a top performing restaurant for two years in a row. To show his team how proud he was of this achievement, he held a mini conference for his restaurant and rewarded them with trophies and plaques for their 2022 results. Alongside the passion for his team, Tyler is very involved in his community, where he volunteers to provide food to those in need.
Jaleel Davis – Taco Bell Corp.
Jaleel cares about people and the Brand. He takes the initiative to partner with neighboring restaurants to help them with their culture, staffing and more. Additionally, Jaleel wants every new hire to feel welcomed and provides them with knowledge to help them succeed. Outside of work, Jaleel volunteers once a month at his local school to help give meals to after school students. While doing everything listed above, Jaleel is also attending college classes through The Guild program.
Christopher (Jonah) Bowers – KMAC Enterprises
Jonah believes in investing time to train and helping others, so that they can be an asset to the Brand. He is always willing to help other restaurants when they are in need and is labeled as ‘a wealth of information’ by his peers. Jonah always takes the initiative to train new managers and assist in new restaurant openings. When he’s not helping his workplace, Jonah helps support the local college and personally fundraises for first responders
Clint Lyders – Team Lyders
Clint started off as a Team Member 15 years ago and is now Director of Development. He was willing to work in every position to gain knowledge of the business and his team. His father, franchisee Peter Lyders, was a motivation for him to continue their hard-working legacy. Clint likes to connect with his restaurant team by participating in Freaky Fun Fast Friday Nights, making tacos alongside the in-restaurant teams. He is also very involved in his community outside of his restaurant; Clint supports the local Humane Societies through canister drives and more.
Allyson Ashcraft - ABTB Capital
Allyson is a region leader who is passionate about mentoring and uplifting others. Soon, Allyson will oversee a fundraising team for Norton Children Hospital, as well as will continue to volunteer for Food Drives for Domestic Violence and Homeless Shelters. Allyson also is a great supporter of recognition and actively works to show restaurant teams how valued they are. Her peers say, “No one can deny Allyson's hard work and kind heart.”
Lexi Galvan - Pacific Bells, LLC
As the youngest Market Training Manger, Lexi is not just a role model but someone who truly wants those around her to succeed. One way she unlocks opportunities for others is by hosting workshops for her restaurant and the Fresno region to help Team Members with their Live Más Scholarship applications. As a Live Más Scholarship recipient herself, Lexi knows what opportunities this scholarship can bring and hopes to help others have a similar path.
Leeland Sommerville – Hospitality Syracuse, Inc.
Leeland is a Restaurant General Manager, leader and role model, and outside of Taco Bell, he teaches a Robotics team. Being a teacher is a part of everything he does; whether it’s leading a team through robotics competitions or encouraging his restaurant team to apply for the Live Más Scholarship, Leeland is a leader who wants those around him to prosper. He has been described by his peers as “a gold standard of leadership and friendship.”
Ali Alvarado – Bravo Foods, LLC.
Those around her describe her as a creative leader and an embodiment of Taco Bell’s Brand Values: Be People-First, Be Different, Be Fan-Led and Be Fearless. She is constantly looking out to learn new things and to help those around her. Ali has volunteered numerous times at her local Boys and Girls club, including doing mock interviews to give students a chance to learn valuable skills. She constantly goes out of her way to build a connection with her community and mentor future generations.
Maxine Birckbichler – Charter Foods, Inc.
Maxine has been a part of Taco Bell for over eight years, and throughout this time, she has continued to look for the best in everyone and support her team effortlessly. She stands alongside her restaurant teams to train, listen, and help them from the moment they step through her doors and throughout their journey – inside and outside the restaurant. Maxine believes in an “open-door policy,” where her teams can chat with her anytime and she will be there for them. On top of it all, Maxine is also passionate about holding fundraisers to support local needs.
Martin A Gonzalez Jr. – Taco Bell Corp.
Martin embodies Taco Bell culture; he leads his team with a positive attitude and champions the Brand like no other. He pushes those around him to be the Best of the Best through encouraging participation in programs such as the Live Más Scholarship. His welcoming attitude and determination have progressed his career quickly and he is currently on track for greatness.
Seaira Bemiller – Team Lyders
Seaira is a relentless leader who helps her restaurant achieve greatness and land a spot as one of the top restaurants in her area! As soon as you walk through the doors of her restaurant, you can feel Seaira’s leadership and see the passion her restaurant team exudes, but she doesn’t stop there. Seaira has a strong presence in her community – thanks to her volunteer work and intentional moments of help.
Erin Thomas - Charter Foods, Inc.
Erin is a long-standing member of the Taco Bell family and has made a significant impact on her restaurant and community. At work, Erin takes the time to actively care about her restaurant team and shows them that they are valued every chance she gets. Outside of work is no different. Erin cares deeply about the community around her and proves it through regularly volunteering at her local homeless shelters and animal rescues.
Mallorie Brown – Taco Bell of America, LLC.
Mallorie goes above and beyond, not only her team, but also her peers on a daily basis. She is empathetic to their needs while also providing a strong environment for structure and accountability. Mallorie also leads with Taco Bell’s recognition culture in mind and constantly recognizes her team for their hard work. She believes in providing a good environment for her team members to thrive in and wants them to succeed!
Brian Lange – Luihn VantEdge Partners, LLC
Brian has recently become a Restaurant General Manager and has made great progress and is a leader with a strong ability to relate to his team. Brian and his team are heavily involved in their community through sponsorships of local fundraising such as schools, churches, and senior programs, along with showing appreciation to first responders during the COVID-19 pandemic. Though new to his role, Brian is on the path to creating a legacy!
Taylor Root – Mariane, Inc.
Since joining the Taco Bell family, Taylor has thrived in every position she has been given. From Team Member to District Manager, Taylor has used her skills to support and train everyone around her, all while facing obstacles along the way. Despite these trials, she has always persevered and has even found creative ways to give back to fundraise to give back to her community. Taylor continues to grow not only herself but those around her each day.
Mckenzie Murphy – Border Foods, LLC.
Mckenzie is a true “show and tell” leader who is always willing to bring her team along with her. Mckenzie cares deeply about her restaurant team and supports them in any way possible. Most recently, Mckenzie showed significant support for one of her team members who had an unexpected health concern. Throughout their health journey, Mckenzie stuck by their side to help and uplift them in a time when it was most needed.
Kayla Deeken – Bell American
Kayla has the Taco Bell spirit! She is intentional about recognizing and championing both restaurant teams and fans the second they walk through her restaurant doors. Outside of work, Kayla continues to champion those around her through volunteering at her local Next Steps program, where she helps those with special needs find work in their community.
Whitney Kesler – Pacific Bells, LLC
Whitney began her career at Taco Bell in 2014 and has continued to grow in her role ever since. Throughout the last nine years, she built strong relationships with both her own team and neighboring restaurants to ensure that everyone can reach their full potential to achieve their goals. She is considered a pillar in her community for all the volunteer work she does with a local high school, creating opportunities for teens, and at a nearby church, providing meals for in-need families.
Joseph Collebrusco – KMAC Corp.
Over the last 10+ years, Joseph has shown strong determination and strength which has led him to becoming one of the youngest District Coaches around. He is hard-working and always ready to go where he is needed. Alongside his passion for the Brand, Joseph has compassion for those in his community. Currently, he helps organize book drives for his local school district, as well as performs at local children's hospitals.
Gabriela Borunda – Team Marn
Gabriela, better known as Gaby, has a strong love and responsibility for her restaurant and those who work there. Her knowledge is always passed on to those around her to ensure they have all the resources to succeed. Gaby pays attention to those around her and is intentional about building people up when they need it most. When she’s not caring for those in her restaurant, Gaby is caring for those in her community by volunteering at her local food bank and other community outreach programs.
James Moody – Border Foods, LLC
Success to James is seeing those around him grow to their fullest potential. Due to this, James is active in promoting a family culture and giving his restaurant team the support, they need. He also encourages them to continue their education through promoting GED programs and helping them obtain scholarships. Through it all, James is simultaneously growing his community through food drives and community clean ups.
Meghan Tushar – Pacific Bells, LLC
Meghan is a natural born leader who has a strong sense of community and hospitality. She is known to have an eye for talent and her ability to build and maintain teams who produce results has made her restaurant so successful. Through this, Meghan knows that this is not done alone, and she is always recognizing her team for their hard work. Her team has felt her support and encouragement and have personally thanked her for all that she has done.
Zachary Pena – Southern Multifoods, Inc.
Zachary has been with Taco Bell for eight years and has since become responsible for management development as well as playing an integral role in improving the management throughout the organization. He is passionate about people’s development and proud of being able to help newcomers. Outside of helping his teams, Zachary supports his local Honors Society and is an active advocate of the Round Up program that helps fuel young people’s passions through the Live Más Scholarship.
Kayla Vikete - JEM Restaurant Group, Inc
Kayla has been with Taco Bell for four years and is one of the youngest Restaurant General Managers at her organization. In her restaurant, she has created a trusting and fun culture for her restaurant team while always looking for ways to become a better leader. To help her community, she believes in and gives people their first job experience while working with them to grow their skills and career. Overall, Kayla is always looking for ways to better her restaurants and community.
Calvin Fortes – Taco Bell Corp.
In his 10 years at Taco Bell, Calvin has made a significant impact on the people around him and left a legacy at his previous organization. He is described by his fellow coworkers as someone that brings positivity and a support system for those around him. Calvin goes out of his way to support his community through bake sales, job fairs and volunteer work at the local high school. His impact will not stop here and continues to grow every day.
Dustin Disney – Charter Foods, Inc.
Dustin is all about building others up. He is always helping others improve and build on their strengths as well as helping them develop in areas of weakness. Dustin has created a strong culture of positivity in his restaurant and is always encouraging others to Live Más to a strong work-life balance. He is always looking to be involved in his community and often gets involved with the local high school.
Micah Etchegoyhen – ES-O-EN TB, LLC
Micah can be best described as a true culture champion who is passionate about ensuring his restaurant teams feel appreciated. Although some shy away from hiring someone with no experience, Micah is always open to provide someone with an opportunity to gain skills and experience. Additionally, he promotes the educational benefits that Taco Bell offers and encourages his restaurant teams to apply. If anyone could turn a struggling situation around to a positive experience – that would be Micah.
Alicia Chesnalavich – Charter Foods, Inc.
Alicia has been with Taco Bell for six years and strives to make a fun work environment every day. Her positive attitude is contagious, and it shows in her restaurants results. Outside of Taco Bell, Alicia volunteers her time at the local animal rescue, caring for the animals and their living arrangements. Along with helping animals, she also volunteers at her local suicide prevention center to build awareness and raise funds for the organization.
Lee Wright – Taco Bell Corp.
Lee is an active mentor at Taco Bell and in his community. His personality has allowed him to make a difference in the lives of those around him and he thrives in providing a supportive culture inside and outside of the restaurant. In his restaurant, Lee is always helping in any way possible, from picking up products to mentoring and growing staff. Outside of the restaurant, he is a proactive participant in SPCA, a community outreach program that mentors young adults in the community.
Destiny Austin - Maryland Cantina, LLC.
Destiny has been with Taco Bell for over 17 years, and from day one, has always strived to make her restaurant a safe and welcoming place for both her restaurant teams and customers. One way she does this is through dedicating her personal time to learn Spanish. Destiny is determined to help Spanish-speaking members of her team and customers feel welcomed and supported from the first “Hola.” Destiny does not shy away from learning new things and mentoring those in her restaurant to provide the best customer service.
Maleeka Brinson – Taco Bell Corp.
Maleeka has a skill for developing productive teams. As a full-time employee and student, she is always on the move… but always looking ahead. Although Maleeka has a busy schedule, she is active inside and outside of her restaurant. Outside of work, Maleeka is a choir director, mentor, and tutor who consistently encourages others to further their education. She takes the initiative and is always willing to help those in her community.