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Volume 21 No. 34
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Forty Under 40: Jaime Faulkner

JUSTIN WINGET / LEVY RESTAURANTS
Contemplating the root of her inclination toward analytics, Jaime Faulkner tracks all the way back to middle school, when she began to ponder which college might be the right fit and where that might lead.

“I’ve always tended to be thinking about what the next thing I need to do is,” said Faulkner, who chose Baylor, majored in economics and landed a plum consulting job out of school. “That may be one of the reasons I’m in the profession I’m in, where you’re constantly trying to optimize the situation.”

Faulkner was on the fast track toward making partner with KPMG when she decided to take some time off after she started a family with husband Colin Faulkner, a Chicago Cubs executive and a 2015 Forty Under 40 honoree. But her success continued after she returned, leading toward the shot to launch E15, Levy Restaurants’ analytics subsidiary.

The issue that most occupies her solution-oriented mind these days is the ever-asked question of how to compete with a big screen, a refrigerator and a recliner. Faulkner believes the answer lies in finding the best use for the wireless device now glued to most fans’ hands.

“Can you make it easier for me to come to your event?” Faulkner asked. “Can you make it easier for me once I get to your event? We need to use technology to drive that type of functionality.” She thinks her experience stepping away to start a family and then returning while her kids all are still at home has helped shape her management style.

“My family knows that they come first, and my employer knows my family comes first, and they’re both very supportive about letting me keep my priorities the way I want to keep them,” Faulkner said. “If you can’t be here, we will still sell hot dogs tomorrow. But this is your son’s first kindergarten trip or first baseball game; that won’t happen again.”

— Bill King

Jaime Faulkner

E15 | CEO
Age: 39
Where born: Cullman, Ala.
Education: Baylor University (B.B.A., economics)
Family: Husband, Colin; children, Avery (13), Blake (12), Drew (9)

Advice I’d give to my younger self: Live in the moment; don’t be so quick to jump to the next thing.
2016 will be a good year if: The Cubs win the World Series.

I'd like to change jobs for a day with: A judge on “The Voice.”
Group supported: Compassion International.
Most thrilling/adventurous thing I’ve done: Becoming a mom. Every day is a new adventure, and once you have it figured out, something has changed.
You'd be surprised to know: I watch “Ellen” every single day.