AFTER 23 years with McDonald’s in Warrnambool, Trevor Hawker will leave the golden arches to new owners in September.
Mr Hawker has spent the past two decades running the fast-food outlets in Warrnambool, starting with the east Warrnambool store in 1989 (now Guyetts Funerals).
Despite having little business experience and a background of 20 years in the police force, he also launched the Liebig Street franchise in 1996, then the newest Raglan Parade store in 2008.
Between the three outlets he estimated more than 3000 workers had been employed at McDonald’s in Warrnambool, including many in their first jobs.
Mr Hawker said the job had been kind to him but he would mostly miss the chance to offer employment to disabled people unable to find work elsewhere.
“Coming from a government department and knowing little about business, this job provided me with the greatest opportunity; the opportunity of a lifetime,” Mr Hawker said.
“It allowed me to expand what I was doing in the police force, which was working with the community. Here people in schools can get their first job, they get confidence and a heck of a learning experience.
“For most of them it’s a stepping stone into working environments or an opportunity if they so desire to make a lifetime career.”
He said new owners John and Amanda Whitehouse, who run McDonald’s franchises in Horsham and Stawell, would be great for the Warrnambool community as new owners.
“They’re looking for a sea change.
“They’re getting a terrific team at both stores and all my management and structure will stay the same.
“Of any couple in the McDonald’s system I couldn’t be any happier with the people they are to come in and work with my guys.
“They’ll be great for Warrnambool.”
Also an owner of Pasta La Vista in Warrnambool, Mr Hawker said he now had other ideas and business ventures to keep him busy at a local, national and international level.