First Slim Chickens franchisee serves as best brand advocate
First Slim Chickens franchisee serves as best brand advocate



Greg McKay serves not only as the very first franchisee for Slim Chickens but also as the brand's best advocate and mentor for potential franchisees.

McKay understands what it means to take a leap of faith and be completely unsure of a business' future success. Born and raised in Texarkana,.....



Greg McKay serves not only as the very first franchisee for Slim Chickens but also as the brand's best advocate and mentor for potential franchisees.

McKay understands what it means to take a leap of faith and be completely unsure of a business' future success. Born and raised in Texarkana, Ark., McKay entered the workforce immediately following high school, working for his father in the construction and home improvement industry. Working side by side with his father bolstered McKay’s sense of pride in following through on every project to ensure its success.

Almost 10 years later, McKay started his own business, Greg McKay Custom Homes. Managing and operating his own firm challenged McKay to persevere. Although he enjoyed that career, his interest in the restaurant industry was always on his mind but was put on hold due to his lack of experience in the industry.

After visiting his oldest daughter, Brooke, at the University of Arkansas and making a trip to "Slims," McKay felt there was nothing in Texarkana like Slim Chickens’ concept of fast food being completely fresh and not frozen. In 2007, once he compiled his research, McKay made the appropriate steps to begin this transition of careers and join Slim Chickens. However, at the time, Slim Chickens was not ready to franchise.

Yet McKay’s interest in Slim Chickens never wavered, and the restaurant brand rewarded his patience six years later, making him the first franchisee in April 2013. He opened his first location the following June, and in the past year he also has mentored new franchisees that joined Slim Chickens after he did. As one of the brand’s first operators, McKay considers it his responsibility to reflect Slim Chickens’ reputation positively to customers as well as potential franchisees.

Recently, McKay signed an additional development agreement for three more restaurants in the next three years throughout Northeast Texas. In addition to expanding in Texarkana, he is targeting the Texas markets of Tyler, Longview and possibly Marshall.

McKay also plans to keep his Slim Chickens business in the family: His son-in-law, Mark Coleman, serves as general manager and director of operations for the first store, where McKay’s son Blake is a manager and daughter Lauren works in both the front and back of the house.


How did you learn about the brand?

I was visiting my daughter at the University of Arkansas, and all we heard about was how great the food at "Slims" was. When we went it was packed and the food surpassed my expectations.

Why did you choose an opportunity with Slim Chickens?

It is something that grabbed my interest right away. I liked the idea of growing a business and making a career change. The Slim Chickens concept was great and the product was fantastic. It was something that fit so well and I knew it would be successful.

Do you have any development/extension plans? Add units? Timeframe?

Yes, of course. We want the brand to take off, and we want to be there every step of the way. I will definitely have three more locations open in the next three years. Future development all depends on real estate; I am targeting one location in Tyler next spring, one in Longview, one in Marshall and another location in Texarkana within the next three years. We have a long-term plan to add 20 stores, but only time will tell. My goal is to help expand the Slim Chickens name and continue to provide the best food and service that every community remembers.

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