Dave Goebel


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Dave Goebel is an accomplished Fortune 250 CEO, board director, and entrepreneur. He brings more than 35 years of leadership experience orchestrating successful growth strategies with fast-paced organizations. At Merryck & Co., he has mentored CEOs and emerging C-suite executives in the technology, banking, financial services, insurance and pharmaceutical industries.


In addition to his work at Merryck & Co., Goebel serves as non-executive chairman for Jack in the Box, Inc. (NASDAQ: JACK), board director at QuickChek, a privately held company in the gas/convenience food category, Wingstop Restaurants, Inc., a publicly traded company in the hospitality segment, and board director at Children’s Mercy Hospital.

Prior to joining Merryck, Goebel held senior executive positions at Applebee’s, including serving as president and CEO, during which time the $4.5B company operated 2,000 restaurants in the U.S. and internationally. As CEO of Applebee’s International, Inc., he effectively dealt with activist shareholders. His track record of success includes expanding both short and long- term shareholder value. Goebel is experienced in leading public and privately held companies including those that incorporated franchises within their model. He has effectively led organizations through transformation, often resulting in disruptive business models that have generated significant growth and increase in market share.

Before joining Applebee’s, Goebel was president of Summit Management, Inc. His largest entrepreneurial venture was with Finest Foodservice, LLC, a Boston Chicken/Boston Market franchise which he founded and co-owned, which was responsible for developing and operating 80 restaurants in seven Midwestern states.

Goebel holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Notre Dame and
did postgraduate work at The Ohio State University. His undergraduate degree in psychology and sociology and his postgraduate studies in personnel administration are the foundation for his propensity to help leaders grow beyond their own expectations.


Goebel teaches at Children’s Mercy Hospital in its development institute and lectures frequently on leadership and values. Goebel also chaired a board for the archdiocese of Kansas City Schools for more than 12 years. In addition, he enjoys spending time with his wife, children, and grandchildren, and dedicated more than 20 years extending his leadership skills on the field as a baseball coach.

Leadership Moments

Before You Speak, Remember the W.A.I.T. Acronym: “Why Am I Talking?”​

“Ask the open-ended question and be quiet, because that’s leadership.”

In his interview with Merryck’s Adam Bryant, Goebel shares insights on the essential leadership skill of listening, and the importance of self-awareness about why you’re talking. Click here to read more.