Bill Baugh was trendsetter at Shoney’s

Sandra ClarkFarragut, Obits

Bill Baugh, 82, former president and CEO of Shoney’s of Knoxville Inc. (from 1995 to 2016), passed away Sunday, June 23. The family will receive friends 4-6 p.m. Monday, July 15, at Click Funeral Home Farragut Chapel with a service to follow. Memorial donations may be made to Shriners Hospitals for Children, Kerbela Shriners, 315 Mimosa Ave., Knoxville TN 37920.


Mr. Baugh had a full career with Shoney’s Big Boy, starting in the kitchen at the store in Charleston, West Virginia, after a stint in the U.S. Navy. According to his obituary, he was known for developing recipes, some that are still used.

He moved to Knoxville in the 1960s to be executive manager of the Shoney’s on Kingston Pike in Bearden. He was later promoted to area supervisor for the Knoxville-area restaurants. He was chief operating officer when the company was sold to Shoney’s of Knoxville Inc., an employee-owned ESOP. He was named president and CEO.

In continuous business locally since 1962, Shoney’s introduced a salad bar in 1979, a breakfast bar in 1981 and then the dinner buffet. At that point, the local Shoney’s dropped the “Big Boy” affiliation and became Shoney’s Family Restaurants, operating in 10 counties.

With Mr. Baugh leading the way, the Shoney’s employee-owners became involved in numerous community projects and nonprofits.

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