Chicken Sandwiches and Children

When Truett Cathy was honored by the Council of Juvenile Court Judges of Georgia, he told reporter Chandra Thomas what inspires him to work with children.  The interview brings back memories of chicken sandwiches and children for Pete Colbenson, our community organizer at  Pete first met the founder of Chick-fil-A more than 30 years ago, when Cathy responded to a call for help. Pete was the director of the Clayton County Regional Youth Development Center in Jonesboro in 1987.  At the time, it was one of the oldest and most decrepit facilities in the state.  One morning he got to work and found out both kitchen stoves were broken down.  He had to find a way to feed the children– about 60 hungry kids needed lunch.  So he called The Chick-fil-A Dwarf House in Jonesboro and found a sympathetic ear. What happened next was a surprise Pete will never forget:

“An hour later an older gentleman in a beat up pickup truck arrived at the back gate. I went to open the gate and introduce myself.  I was stunned to learn it was Truett Cathy.

Truett’s Truth: Chick-fil-A’s Founder Speaks

He is credited with creating the chicken sandwich and his company is known for the wildly popular “Eat Mor Chikin” ad campaign. When Truett Cathy, 89, isn’t busy with his duties helming the Chick-fil-A fast food chain empire he founded, he’s busy serving as “grandpa” to hundreds of needy children. Since 1987 his WinShape Homes have served more than 300 kids in three states. The Georgia Council of Juvenile Court Judges has presented him with the Martha Glaze Service Award for his efforts. JJIE’s Chandra Thomas sat down with Cathy (who donned a burgundy tie plastered with his signature Chik-fil-A cows) to discuss the honor named for a retired Clayton County judge and his lifelong commitment to serving children.