Restaurateur Andy Marshall Honored For Ongoing Community Contributions

Monday, December 18, 2017
Andy Marshall, pictured with his wife, Jan, accepting the Epsilon Sigma Phi Friend of Extension award
Andy Marshall, pictured with his wife, Jan, accepting the Epsilon Sigma Phi Friend of Extension award

Andy Marshall, proprietor of Puckett’s Gro. and Restaurant in downtown Chattanooga and 11 other restaurant and hospitality concepts across the state, has been recognized by Middle Tennessee State University’s Jones College of Business and the Tennessee Hospitality and Tourism Association for his commitment to service in the community and the hospitality industry. 

Mr. Marshall was named a 2017 recipient of the Joe M. Rodgers Spirit of America Award, presented by his alma mater. Named for a former United States ambassador, businessman and the inaugural holder of the Jennings A. Jones Chair of Excellence in Free Enterprise in the Jones College of Business, the award is presented to an individual who has demonstrated the highest ideals in keeping with the American spirit of innovation, entrepreneurship and commitment to others.  

Nominations for the Spirit of America award are solicited from the executive leadership in the Jones College of Business, with the final selection made by the dean of the College of Business, Dr. David Urban. 

“Andy has made many contributions to the growth of the middle Tennessee area,” Dr. Urban said. “His tireless work in building his business, including the recent opening of Puckett’s Gro. and Hattie Jane’s Creamery in Murfreesboro, is making a huge impact on regional economic development. The students at the Jones College -- especially those students in our Entrepreneurship program -- can learn a great deal from him.” 

Mr. Marshall was also named the Tennessee Hospitality & Tourism Association’s 2017 Restaurateur of the Year at the organization’s annual “Stars of the Industry” gala event, held at the Gatlinburg Convention Center. These prestigious awards honor those who have made notable contributions to the hospitality and tourism industry in Tennessee and demonstrate strong character, work ethic and leadership ability in their careers. 

With more than 1,800 members, the non-profit TnHTA represents the interests of the state’s lodging, dining and tourism establishments and businesses related to the hospitality and tourism industry. Mr. Marshall sits on the TnHTA board as chair of the government relations committee.  

“Andy Marshall is an integral piece of the fabric of Tennessee’s hospitality and tourism industry,” said TnHTA President and CEO Greg Adkins. “His commitment to business excellence in his home state continues to bring visitors to Tennessee and serves as an inspiration for other entrepreneurs in the industry.” 

Just last week, Mr. Marshall was presented with the state-level Friend of Extension award from Epsilon Sigma Phi, a national leadership organization which governs the local and statewide extensions of state universities’ agriculture branches. The Friend of Extension award is the highest honor presented to a non-Extension member. 

Mr. Marshall received the award at the ESP Tennessee Omega Chapter 2017 State Meeting. He was recognized for his longstanding partnership with the University of Tennessee Extension in Williamson County and his contributions to growing the understanding and appreciation for agriculture in Tennessee through his restaurant and hospitality business across the state.  

The awards come on the heels of A. Marshall Family Foods’ grand opening of its twelfth concept, Deacon’s New South in Downtown Nashville. In addition to Deacon’s and Puckett’s in Chattanooga, the company owns and operates Puckett’s locations in downtown Franklin, downtown Nashville, downtown Columbia and downtown Murfreesboro, Tenn.; Puckett’s Boat House, a Southern seafood concept and Scout’s Pub, a modern, upscale pub, both in Franklin; Puckett’s Trolley; Homestead Manor, a multi-layer historic property that boasts an on-site restaurant, farm and event venue; and two locations of Hattie Jane’s Creamery, a small-batch, artisan ice cream shop in Columbia and Murfreesboro, Tenn.  

Mr. Marshall has also received several awards on the local level this year, including the Boys & Girls Clubs Tennessee Area “C.A.R.E” Award, presented to him at the organization’s Council luncheon in September. The award, which stands for “Children Are the Reason for Excellence,” annually honors someone with outstanding leadership and dedicated service to youth in his or her community. 

In 2017, the Nashville Business Journal recognized Mr. Marshall as one of Nashville’s Most Admired CEOs for the fourth year in a row. A. Marshall Family Foods has more than 700 employees and has been named to the Inc. 5000 list of America’s Fastest Growing Companies in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017. To learn more about A. Marshall Family Foods, including career opportunities, visit


Mike’s Hole in the Wall Moving Across The Street; Virgola Opens On Georgia Avenue; Mojo Burrito Adds 4th Location

Mike’s Hole in the Wall, 535 Cherokee Blvd., is moving to a new, remodeled location across the street from its original location after 10 years. It was described by John McClellan as a neighborhood bar and restaurant. A new beer license was needed from the city beer board because of the new address and because a third partner, David Debroskey, has been added. Virgola will ... (click for more)

Crabtree Farms Offers Instant Pot Workshop On Saturday

Crabtree Farms is offering an afternoon on the basics of using an Instant Pot o n Saturday, March 10 ,  from 3-4:30 p.m .  Amanda Nelson-Varnell, of Dish T’Pass Catering Company, will be host the of this class.  An Instant Pot is an electric, programmable, and highly versatile kitchen device that does the work of seven kitchen gadgets.  It can be ... (click for more)

City May Make It Easier For Food Trucks To Operate In Chattanooga

The City Council is considering action that would make it easier for food trucks to operate in Chattanooga.  City Attorney Wade Hinton said cities like Austin and Portland have thriving food truck operations and Chattanooga is studying those models. He said, "It's truly an industry there." He said a 2013 food truck ordinance was limited and did not allow food trucks on ... (click for more)

Haslam Proposes $30 Million For School Safety

Governor Bill Haslam Tuesday proposed $30 million to improve school safety across the state in the amendment to the fiscal year 2018-19 budget proposal to be considered by the General Assembly in the coming weeks. The funding includes $25 million in nonrecurring and $5.2 million in recurring school safety grants. Earlier this month, the governor appointed a School Safety Working ... (click for more)

The Panhandling "Tax" On Gunbarrel

I’ve been reading about the panhandling problem in downtown; it is a huge problem in the Gunbarrel area, too.  It’s commonplace to be accosted by panhandlers when walking from your parked car into a commercial establishment.  And often they are aggressive.  I look carefully around my car before getting out, but sometimes someone will be lurking in between cars and ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Meme From The Meanies

Hardly a day goes past that I don’t receive several strings of memes in my incoming emails and yesterday there was one particular collection that gave me pause for thought. First, here’s the definition of a meme: “An Internet meme (/mi?m/ MEEM) is an activity, concept, catchphrase or piece of media which spreads, often as mimicry or for humorous purposes, from person to person via ... (click for more)