NEWS & EVENTS

Five-year-old Aly Kelley

Dunkin' done right The DD Difference: Aly Donuts with a Side of Smiles

10.07.14; Common Grounds DD Newsletter

CORTLAND, NY - Five-year-old Aly Kelley loves to smile, especially when she's handed a Boston Kreme donut. Most days, she visits the Cortland, NY, DD drive-thru, where her grandmother, Suzanne Kelley, orders her a donut, and Aly gets out of her car seat to hand the crew member a dollar. This scenario may sound routine, but it's far from easy for Aly.

Aly suffers from selective mutism, a condition when a child who can speak does not speak in public or social settings. Aly basically shuts down in public, explains Restaurant Manager Lisa Heath.

One day back in February, Lisa decorated a special donut for Aly, and the gesture has been repeated every day since. Even on days Aly doesn't come in, there's a decorated donut waiting just in case.

"We go out of our way to say 'Hi,' wave and ask her, 'How about a wave?'" Lisa continues. "One day, she waved to us and we got all excited. Then she started giving us high-fives every day. Now she's even saying good-bye, which made her grandma cry."

"We call it donut therapy," Aly's grandma, Suzanne, says. "I believe our visits to Dunkin' give Aly a boost in confidence at the start of her school day. I also believe that her DD experience has been a big part of her progress in speaking in a very soft voice or whispers to her teachers and classmates."

"Everyone loves to decorate Aly's donut," says Lisa. "I'm just glad we can make a difference!"


Where Everyone Knows Your Name
Aly may be the only name on a donut at the Cortland, NY, DD but crew members know more than 60 "regulars" by name.

Every morning they decorate and stack cups with festive stickers and handwritten messages such as "Have a Good Day" and the name of each frequent guest. They know each order simply by looking at the guest's name!

"Guests love that we personalize their cups," says RM Lisa Heath. "We have lots of comments on our GSS survey about it. I have had guests tell me they 'brag' at work or to friends that they get a special DD cup. I have also seen them 'brag' about it on Facebook®."


click to read the full story.


DUNKIN' DONUTS FRANCHISEE PARTNERS WITH COLLEGE FOR AMERICA AT SOUTHERN NEW HAMPSHIRE UNIVERSITY TO OFFER FREE COLLEGE EDUCATION TO SELECT EMPLOYEES

03.26.14

Program to initially offer 25 Dunkin' Donuts Franchisee's employees in Maine, New Hampshire and New York an opportunity for a fully-paid college education. Goal to eventually offer program to all 1,600 employees in The Wolak Group network.

FALMOUTH, ME - Dunkin' Donuts franchise network The Wolak Group, which operates over 85 Dunkin' Donuts stores in Maine, New Hampshire and New York, today announced a program with nonprofit College for America at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) that will offer 25 Wolak Group employees the opportunity to receive a fully-paid online college education and earn an accredited associate degree. If successful, this program offering may expand to all eligible employees in The Wolak Group network.

"The success of our Dunkin' Donuts restaurants is a direct result of the dedication of our employees; that's why we are investing in them through this program," said Dunkin' Donuts franchisee and Founder of The Wolak Group, Ed Wolak. "We are thrilled to offer this benefit to our employees and believe that it will help us hire and retain good people. I am hopeful that if this program proves to be beneficial for our employees and our business, we can expand it to all 1,600 employees in The Wolak Group network, and that other Dunkin' Donuts franchisees will consider offering a similar benefit to their employees, either in conjunction with SNHU or another university catering to the needs of working adults."

College for America at SNHU is a nonprofit school that offers working adults the opportunity to earn an fully-accredited associate of the arts degree in General Studies with a concentration in Business, through a competency-based curriculum built around applicable student projects and real-world job skills. Through this program, beginning in Spring 2014, the select Wolak Group employees will pursue a college degree through an online learning model.

"We are proud to partner with The Wolak Group to offer a fully-funded college education to local Dunkin' Donuts Franchisee employees," said Paul LeBlanc, President of Southern New Hampshire University. "We look forward to working together to bring this program to life and to continuing our commitment of offering a college degree program designed for working adults."

To learn more about Dunkin' Donuts, visit www.DunkinDonuts.com or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/DunkinDonuts) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/DunkinDonuts).

To learn more about College for America at Southern New Hampshire University, visit http://collegeforamerica.org/.

About Dunkin' Donuts
Founded in 1950, Dunkin' Donuts is America's favorite all-day, everyday stop for coffee and baked goods. Dunkin' Donuts is a market leader in the hot regular/decaf/flavored coffee, iced coffee, donut, bagel and muffin categories. Dunkin' Donuts has earned the No. 1 ranking for customer loyalty in the coffee category by Brand Keys for eight years running. The company has nearly 11,000 restaurants in 33 countries worldwide. Based in Canton, Mass., Dunkin' Donuts is part of the Dunkin' Brands Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: DNKN) family of companies. For more information, visit www.DunkinDonuts.com.

About College for America at Southern New Hampshire University
Driven by its nonprofit mission to radically expand access and improve the quality of higher education, College for America at Southern New Hampshire University partners with companies and nonprofits nationwide to offer their employees a rigorous, competency-based college degree built on applicable projects and real-world learning instead of lectures and credit hours. The school was the first such competency-based institution approved for financial aid by the federal government, and has been widely cited as a leader and innovator in making higher education more accessible for working adults. For more information, visit www.collegeforamerica.org

About the Wolak Group
Founded in 1975 by Ed Wolak, The Wolak Group is an independent franchisee network that owns and operates over 85 Dunkin' Donuts restaurants in Maine, New Hampshire and New York. For more information, visit www.thewolakgroup.com.


Click here to watch the video on syracuse.com

Syracuse-area Dunkin' Donuts stores sport new look

03.21.14; By Kevin Tampone of Syracuse.com

Dunkin' franchisee Tom Santurri of the Wolak Group talks about a new look for the chain found at some of its Syracuse-area locations, including the store at the former Sam Dell property on West Genesee Street.

SYRACUSE, NY - Some new Dunkin' Donuts locations in the Syracuse area feature an updated design from the chain.

Stores at the former Sam Dell property on West Genesee Street and on Teall Avenue feature amenities like expanded seating areas and conference rooms available for business meetings.

Both locations also have fireplaces.

click to read the full article and watch the video.


Click here to watch the video on Ynn.com

Golisano's receives $24,000 donation from Dunkin Donuts

07.25.12; YNN Central New York

SYRACUSE, NY - Upstate Golisano Children's Hospital in Syracuse is more than $24,000 richer thanks to Dunkin Donuts. The coffee shop handed the hospital a check Wednesday morning.

Dunkin Donuts raised the money through its Iced Coffee Day back in May. For each iced coffee sold that day in its Central New York locations, the restaurant donated $1 to Golisano's.

"This is a wonderful thing for us because many people don't realize we provide a lot of services for children beyond medicine. In particular, we have a program called Child Life that brings specialists in working with children from art and music and education," said Tom Welch, Medical Director of Golisano Children's Hospital.

Officials at the Children's Hospital say they will use the money to extend programs, like Child Life, that help both children being treated there and their families.

click to visit the web site and watch the video.


Keep Maine Strong Campaign

07.23.12

A commercial for the Keep Maine Strong Campaign focusing on Ed Wolak and his daughter Kim discussing The Wolak Group's involvement with the local economy and community.


Ed Wolak, KoKo Puff, MSSPA President Marilyn Goodreau, and Kimberly Wolak Garrett Ed Wolak, KoKo Puff, MSSPA President Marilyn Goodreau, and Kimberly Wolak Garrett

Dunkin' Donuts executive helps abused horses

03.06.12; MSSPA.org - Maine State Society for the Protection of Animals

Kimberly Garrett is a remarkable young woman. She is well-educated, ambitious, hard-working, and successful. She has inner and outer beauty and a kind demeanor, is a loving daughter, devoted wife, and adoring mother to her son Tyler. And she is passionate about horses!

Growing up in southern Maine, Kim rode and owned horses until she left the state to continue her education. Later, working full time in California in the film industry and then the wine industry, Kim, always drawn to the world of horses, began teaching riding on the side, part-time, focusing on saddleseat equitation and training multiple breeds at Jim Bennett Farms at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center in Burbank, CA. Kim loves all horses, but has a particular fondness for American Saddlebreds, the breed of her first horse, Peavine's Pistol.

Peavine's Pistol Peavine's Pistol

After she returned home to Maine, happily married and with a young son, Kim took on significant responsibility at the Wolak Group, a family-owned business headquartered in Falmouth, Maine. Today she is Vice President of Management Services, Human Resource Manager and Franchise Owner for the Maine and New Hampshire network of the Wolak Group. As a young working mother, Kim knows the challenge of juggling many roles. She also understands the value of giving back to her community. She has never lost her passion for horses.

Kim teaching at J. Bennett Farms in California Kim teaching at J. Bennett Farms in California

That is very good news for the nearly 75 horses living at the Maine State Society for the Protection of Animals. In September 2011, Kim called the MSSPA after hearing many accolades from her mother, Debby Wolak, a supporter of the organization. She asked whether the Society would like the opportunity to receive customer donations from 11 local Dunkin' Donut stores owned by the Wolak Group. A new friendship was formed and spectacular results were achieved. Between September 1 and December 31 last year, the Society gratefully received customer donations totaling $10,222.02. Kim Garrett and her family have developed a close relationship with the animal-serving public charity; Kim is facilitating additional projects of mutual benefit to the Wolak Group's for profit enterprise and the Society, including the opportunity to receive customer donations again from those same locations from September 1, 2012-December 31st. 2012. Kim modestly credits much of her success to her son, who gives her a reason every day to work hard and make a difference, her husband for supporting her goals, and a close relationship with her parents, who support her unconditionally. Her dedication to personal achievement is evident in her accomplishments to date. Her concern for others and belief in personal responsibility is reflected in her commitment to service to the community. She has been recognized for her talent in marketing and brand development and was recently appointed to serve on the statewide Dunkin' Donuts Advertising Committee. But when Kim Garrett walks down the center aisle of the big barn at the MSSPA, the horses simply recognize her love for them.

Kim riding Midtown Man Kim riding Midtown Man

"I was given an amazing opportunity in life," Kim said. "One of the best things about my work is that I have so many opportunities to make a difference. Animal welfare, especially for horses, has always been my personal number one cause that I wanted to impact the most. I am unbelievably thankful to Marilyn, Meris and all the wonderful people who work hard at MSSPA every day and have allowed me to be a part of their family."

click to visit the web site.


The Wolak Group of Dunkin' Donuts restaurants is commended by Make-A-Wish foundation's Jim Christie of Maine (left). President of The Wolak Group Ed Wolak accepts the award along with (from left) Franchisee and The Wolak Group VP of Management Services Kimberly Garrett, Wolak Group Director of Operations for Maine and New Hampshire Dave Brooks, and Wolak Group Store Manager in Portland, Maine, Daniel Webster. The Wolak Group of Dunkin' Donuts restaurants is commended by Make-A-Wish foundation's Jim Christie of Maine (left). President of The Wolak Group Ed Wolak accepts the award along with (from left) Franchisee and The Wolak Group VP of Management Services Kimberly Garrett, Wolak Group Director of Operations for Maine and New Hampshire Dave Brooks, and Wolak Group Store Manager in Portland, Maine, Daniel Webster.

Dunkin' Donuts group collects Spare Change for charities in Maine, New Hampshire, New York

02.29.12; DDIFO.org - Suzanne McDonald

Dunkin' group's 'Spare Change' gathers big money for charities

To each of us, it's just a few cents weighing us down. But since 2009 this Dunkin' Donuts group has witnessed the impact small change has for the greater good throughout Maine, New Hampshire, and Central New York.

Customers dropped $78,861.01 into collection jars for the Make-A-Wish. So far, 12 children – nine in Central New York and three in New Hampshire and Maine – were granted their wishes, thanks to Dunkin' Donuts independent franchise owner the Wolak Group.

Make-A-Wish grants wishes to children between ages 2-1/2 and 18 with life-threatening medical conditions.

The "Spare Change" program made these, among many more, wishes possible:

  • Cody, 17, with acute Myelogenous Leukemia went deep-sea fishing in Alaska.
  • Jacob, 10, with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy traveled to Universal Studios.
  • Aiden, 5, with Double Inlet Left Ventricle visited Walt Disney World.

click to visit the web site.


USO gets a little help from their friends, Dunkin' Donuts and Domino's Pizza kick-off fundraiser

02.10.12

For the first time in Watertown, two businesses are holding a fundraising campaign for a Fort Drum non-profit organization.

The Fort Drum USO has partnered with Dunkin' Donuts and Domino's Pizza with a new fundraising campaign, raising money to continue the free 'home-away-from-home" that the USO provides to our 10th Mountain Division troops.

Karen Clark, USO executive director, works throughout the year to continue the services for the men and woman that serve our country. The USO is a non-profit organization that relies solely on donations of time and money to ensure that soldiers and their families have a place to relax and enjoy a home-like atmosphere.

Dunkin' Donuts and Domino's Pizza will be asking each customer if they would like to donate a dollar to the USO with their purchase. The money raised will stay 100% local and help the USO continue daily operations.

Donations can be made at any of the Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence County locations.

click to visit the web site.


From left to right: Rochester Red Wings General Manager Dan Mason; Dunkin' Donuts Franchisee Lou Cabral and his sons; Foodlink Communications Manager Martha Brown; and Rochester Community Baseball President/CEO/COO Naomi Silver. From left to right: Rochester Red Wings General Manager Dan Mason; Dunkin' Donuts Franchisee Lou Cabral and his sons; Foodlink Communications Manager Martha Brown; and Rochester Community Baseball President/CEO/COO Naomi Silver.

Dunkin' Donuts and the Rochester Red Wings Team up to score over 330 pounds of coffee for Foodlink

09.03.11

Local franchisees donate coffee to Foodlink

The 336 pounds, or 14 cases, of coffee equates to approximately 16,800 cups. The 336 pounds, or 14 cases, of coffee equates to approximately 16,800 cups.

ROCHESTER, NY - Rochester Red Wings General Manager Dan Mason joined Dunkin' Donuts franchisees today to donate 336 pounds of coffee to Foodlink, the regional food bank of the Genesee Valley and Finger Lakes Region. The donation - the equivalent of 16,800 cups of coffee - was fueled by a season-long partnership between the team and Dunkin' Donuts.

During the 2011 season, Dunkin' Donuts pledged to donate one pound of coffee to Foodlink for every run scored at home by the Red Wings. The Red Wings had scored a total of 325 runs heading into the final regular season home game. Dunkin' Donuts has guaranteed a minimum of 14 cases, or 336 pounds, of coffee for the food bank.
click to read the more.


Ed Wolak of The Wolak Group

Dunkin' Donuts franchisee makes it his business to give to Maine causes

08.01.11 - Portland Press Herald; By STEPHANIE HARDIMAN Staff Writer

Ed Wolak of Scarborough began at Dunkin' Donuts more than 40 years ago and now owns 70 stores.

FALMOUTH, ME - When Ed Wolak was 16 in 1967, he was working his first job washing floors in a Manchester, N.H., Dunkin' Donuts. He didn't plan on sticking with it long term, particularly when he hit college and developed an allergy to flour, suffering from what he calls "baker's asthma."

Fast-forward more than 40 years, and Wolak, who lives in Scarborough, clearly decided to stick with it. Today he has 70 stores -- including 11 in Maine -- and plans to open at least 30 more in the next five years... click to read more.

Spare Change Program The Wolak Group

Wishes granted for local kids

06.08.11 - YNN; By Amanda Kelley

Two Jefferson County kids are about to live their dreams, thanks to some spare change from the local community. Our Amanda Kelley tells us about a fundraising program at a popular coffee shop and how its efforts are helping a pair of amazing young kids.

WATERTOWN, NY -- These kids might not show it, but they're battling life threatening diseases.

Make-A-Wish parent Lynnette Bartels said, "Jacob has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Eventually he will go into a wheelchair. It affects all the muscles in the body."

Make-A-Wish parent Kevin Sellers said, "Aiden was diagnosed at 20 weeks with a disease called double end left ventricle. Basically, he only has three chambers in his heart."... click to read more and watch the video.

Related Articles:

Ed Wolak '72, '74 with Lauren Hawkins, a junior marketing major in SNHU's marketing research class, discussing one of the presentations created to help decide whether bread and rolls should be introduced into several of Wolak's Dunkin' Donuts stores in the Syracuse, NY, area.

Where Are They Now?

Spring 2011 - The Extra Mile; By Mike Cullity

Over the last four decades, Ed Wolak '72, '74 has parlayed an entry-level job at Dunkin' Donuts into a small doughnut empire.

MANCHESTER, NH - The 59-year-old owner of more than 70 Dunkin' Donuts franchises in Maine, New Hampshire and upstate New York, Wolak started out sweeping floors at a Dunkin' Donuts store in Manchester, N.H., during high school. He paid his way through SNHU by baking for Dunkin' franchises in the area, earning an associate degree and then a bachelor's degree in business management.... click to read more.

Dunkin Brands

Dunkin' Brands, Inc., Honors Scarborough Franchisee

03.10.11 - Dunkin' Brands Press Release

Edward Wolak Named 2010 Dunkin' Donuts Developer of the Year at Annual Dunkin' Brands Franchisee & Enterprise Awards

CANTON, MA - Dunkin' Brands, Inc., the parent company of Dunkin' Donuts and Baskin-Robbins, honored Edward Wolak of Scarborough, Maine. as the 2010 Dunkin' Donuts Developer of the Year -- one of the company's highest distinctions. The Developer of the Year Award is presented to a franchisee who has demonstrated success in multi-store growth, commitment to quality brand standards and executional excellence. click to read more.

Dunkin Donuts Neon Sign

Dunkin' Donuts Franchise Adds More Members to Company Oversight Council

04.29.2010 - Press Release

Wolak reappointed to the Dunkin' Advisory Council.

CANTON, MA - Dunkin' Donuts, America's all-day, everyday stop for coffee and baked goods, has announced the result of its most recent Brand Advisory Council (BAC) election with twenty-six franchise leaders representing five regions.

The members serve a two year term, providing strategic advice and guidance on brand initiatives. They attend regular meetings with the senior leadership team at Dunkin' Brands corporate headquarters in Canton, Mass. This group represents the entire franchise community and serves as a forum to exchange ideas, provide feedback, observations and suggestions. click to read more.

Roy and Tom of the Wolak Group

45 Stores and counting

03.2010 - Oswego County Business; Cover Story By Lou Sorendo

The Kings of Donuts and Coffee

Oswego, NY - Recession-proof — very few businesses in the Central New York region can claim to have such a status.

One of those is The Wolak Group, made up of three Dunkin' Donuts franchisees who are expanding their holdings in whirlwind fashion.

Roy Clark of Fulton and Tom Santurri of Tully anchor the Dunkin' Donuts team that is rapidly expanding throughout the Central New York region. click to read more.

©2011 DD IP Holder LLC. The Dunkin' Donuts trademarks, logos and designs are trademarks of DD IP Holder LLC. Used under license.