This Is It! Southern Kitchen and BBQ Launches Franchise Program, Names CEO

Atlanta — This is it! Southern Kitchen and BBQ, an Atlanta-based Southern home-style restaurant brand, has launched its franchising program and signed professional NBA player Paul Millsap as its first area developer for Greater Atlanta. The newly revamped Southern food brand has also appointed Tamala Fowler as its CEO and partnered with renowned BBQ restaurateur and Food Network star Pat Neely to assist in recipe development and new menu offerings.

This Is It! was founded more than 35 years ago by the Anthony family, which has a rich, 80-year history in the restaurant business. Today it has 11 locations throughout Greater Atlanta.

During his time in Atlanta playing for the Atlanta Hawks, Millsap became a frequent visitor to This Is It! restaurants and was drawn to the brand’s emphasis on family and its mix of homemade BBQ, seafood and soul food. As the brand’s first area developer for Greater Atlanta, Paul plans to open at least three new locations in the area, with the first of these restaurants to open by mid-2020.

With the brand’s franchising launch, This Is It! Southern Kitchen and BBQ has named franchise veteran Tamala Fowler as its new CEO. Fowler was previously the president of GiGi’s Cupcakes, where she oversaw aggressive store growth, and served as the senior vice president of supply chain and international development for Dickey’s Barbeque Pit, in which she spearheaded the brand’s entrance into retail locations such as Walmart and Kroger.

To assist with the brand’s revamp and launch into franchising, This Is It! has partnered with Food Network celebrity chef and BBQ connoisseur Pat Neely. A restauranteur for over 25 years, Neely owned and operated the award-winning Neely’s BBQ chain in Tennessee, with five locations across Memphis and Nashville, and Neely’s Barbecue Parlor in New York City. Neely also starred in his own show on the Food Network called “Down Home with the Neelys” for 13 seasons. In this partnership, Neely will help efficiently scale the brand, promote nationally and replicate the success of the original restaurants in Atlanta, while training franchisees on store operations and recipe execution.

For more information, visit


SOURCE: This Is It! Southern Kitchen and BBQ

Tagged under