San Diego-based Luna Grill, founded in 2004, has hired Rich Pinnella as the company’s first-ever chief brand officer (CBO). Previously, Pinnella was an executive with Taco Bell for 20 years, serving the last seven as a VP and GM. At Taco Bell, Pinnella directed U.S. and international operations involving marketing, culinary and supply chain functions. He contributed to Taco Bell’s growth from $4 million to $10.5 million in sales. Now operating 50 restaurants in Southern California and the Dallas-Fort Worth areas, Luna Grill is a leader in the fast-casual dining segment. Its fresh Mediterranean cuisine includes kabob plates, gourmet salads, appetizers that include hummus and falafel, wraps, desserts, craft beer and wine.
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iHeart Media San Diego has announced Frankie Vinci will solo host the morning show at KSSX-FM JAM’N 95.7. The “Frankie V In the Morning” show will succeed “Frankie V and Tati in the Morning” following the recent pairing of Tati Pelegreen with Jesse Lozano at iHeart sister station KMYI-FM Star 94.1. Vinci has worked at JAM’N since the station launched in May of 2016. Prior to KSSX, he worked at JAM’N 94.5-FM in Boston, KHTS 93.3-FM in San Diego and KISS 95.7-FM in Hartford, Conn.
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San Diego branding agency Basic has announced it has opened a new satellite office in St. Louis operating under the name Studio 240. “The goal is simple, to create great work under the Basic brand,” said Matt Faulk, Basic founder and CEO. “We’re excited to see the projects that come out of this office.” Basic is one of San Diego’s fastest-growing agencies, according to Adweek. The trade publication recently ranked the top 100 fastest growing agencies. Basic was listed #18 worldwide with a growth rate of 355 percent over the past three years. The agency attributed its fast growth to the addition of several large clients representing the fashion, luxury, hospitality and financial technology industries.