Central Florida

Chapter Chair: Joe Tenczar, VP of IT, Sonny’s BBQ

Joe Tenczar is the Chief Information Officer for Sonny’s BBQ, one of the largest and most popular barbecue restaurant companies in the country. Tenczar joined Sonny’s BBQ in 2014 with a focus on creating the franchise restaurant technology blueprint of the future.  His specialties include a strategic focus on emerging technology’s place in hospitality and understanding the overall tactical hospitality technology necessities.After beginning his career as a programmer and manager for financial software companies, Tenczar was the senior technology leader for the second largest arm of the Marriott Corporation.  He then joined Ripley’s Entertainment as VP of Technology during the construction of their Great Wolf Lodge in Niagara Falls, Canada. During his tenure, Tenczar helped pioneer the use of RFID technology into POS and PMS systems for the benefit of guest security and convenience.

Before Sonny’s BBQ, Tenczar was most recently the CIO for Hard Rock International, where he led the R&D and rollout of many innovative technologies that affect the Hard Rock guests and staff members.  That included the worldwide rollout of “Hard Rock Interactive™,” which allows guests to interact with music being played in the property as well as digitized versions of some of the over 72,000 pieces of music memorabilia in the Hard Rock collection.

Tenczar holds a dual Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science and Telecommunications from the University of Florida and a Masters of Business Administration from the Crummer Business School at Rollins College.  He sits on the Advisory Board for the Central Florida Society for Information Managers, the Hospitality Technology Editorial Advisory Board, the FSTEC Advisory board, and the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts Technology Board.

Outside of work, Joe enjoys Scouting activities with his two sons and wife of 11 years.  He also enjoys playing golf and basketball.  His favorite BBQ sauce is Sonny’s Sizzlin’ Sweet on some baby back ribs!

Chapter Vice Chair: Lori Ness, Director of Store Systems, Hard Rock International

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