How Rich Is The Chick-Fil-A CEO And What's The Average Pay Of His Employees?

With over 2,500 locations in the United States (and two in Canada), Chick-fil-A is an immensely popular fast food chain, known for its craveable chicken sandwiches (via Scrape Hero).

Chick-fil-A's origins begin in Hapeville, Georgia, when S. Truett Cathy worked on several chicken sandwich recipes for his restaurant, the Dwarf Grill in 1946. In 1964, the restaurateur stumbled upon gold: A breaded chicken sandwich nestled inside a buttered bun. The recipe caught on. Cathy named it the "Chick-fil-A, with the capital A standing for grade A top quality," according to Chick-fil-A's website. The first Chick-fil-A restaurant opened in 1967 in Atlanta, Georgia. Since then, the company has grown to include locations in malls, airports, and college campuses in 47 states, Washington D.C., and Canada (via The Chicken Wire).

Truett's son, Dan Cathy, started working at Chick-fil-A in 1970. As the eldest son of Truett, Cathy grew up in the business. In 2013, Dan was named CEO of the chain. His brother, Bubba Cathy, serves as the executive vice president of the chain. How much does Dan Cathy earn as Chick-fil-A's CEO?

Chick-fil-A has been a lucrative family business

Selling chicken sandwiches has turned into quite the lucrative endeavor for the Cathy family. The family is listed as number 21 on Forbes' 2020 America's Richest Families list with a net worth of $14.2 billion. 

At 68 years of age, Dan Cathy's net worth is recorded as $7.1 billion, according to Forbes. He's ranked number 565 on Forbes' Billionaires list and made the number 81 spot on Forbes' Top 400. 

Though the chicken sandwich chain is popular, the company is not without controversy. S. Truett Cathy, who died in 2014 at the age of 93, was deeply religious and, according to the Chick-fil-A website, "led a life that was centered on biblical principles." Chick-fil-A stores are closed on Sundays for that reason. The company, which is privately owned, got into hot water when the company's foundation arm donated $1.8 million in 2017 to organizations like the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA), the Salvation Army, and a Christian youth home, according to Restaurant Business. These organizations, some say, have anti-LGBTQ beliefs.

According to Chick-fil-A, Dan Cathy is said to greet customers in his restaurants with, "Hi. I'm Dan. I work in customer service." While the CEO has a $7.1 billion net worth, how much do Chick-fil-A employees working in customer service really make?

What do Chick-fil-A's employees make?

Though the Cathy family has amassed billions of dollars, the vast wealth doesn't quite trickle down to its employees. Jobs website Indeed lists an average salary for a restaurant team member at $10.86 per hour. Kitchen team members average about $11.90 per hour. Managers fare better, making about $14.39 per hour. Outside of pay, the fast food restaurant chain does offer some perks and benefits, like guaranteed Sundays off, since all restaurants are closed one day a week. 

Chick-fil-A also offers tuition discounts at many universities across the country, and employees are invited to apply for college scholarships. According to the Chick-fil-A website, the company has awarded $92 million in Remarkable Futures scholarship money to over 59,000 employees since 1973.

Payscale reports other benefits for Chick-fil-A employees that could factor into making a decision to work there. Some employees report earning free drinks, food discounts, paid holidays and vacations, paid sick leave, and the ability to participate in a 401K.