Taylor English Duma LLP is pleased to announce the addition of Harold M. “Sonny” Cohen as a partner in the firm’s corporate practice. With more than 30 years of experience, Cohen is a proven lawyer and business executive with a strong grasp of the operational and financial needs of business clients.
Prior to joining Taylor English, Cohen served as General Counsel and Chief Administrative Officer of publicly traded AFC Enterprises, Inc. and Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc. He has extensive experience leading legal teams and guiding investors, senior management and boards of directors on a wide range of legal topics and business strategies.
Cohen began his career in private practice where he acquired organizational understanding and client service principles as an attorney with an Am Law 50 firm and his own co-founded real estate boutique law firm.
In 1995, Cohen joined the in-house team at AFC Enterprises, where he spent 22 years contributing to the success of the then private-equity owned holding company with global brands such as Popeyes, Seattle's Best Coffee, Cinnabon and Church's Chicken. He assumed numerous leadership roles in the organization, including serving as Senior Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer and General Counsel, until the sale of the company in 2017.
While in-house, Cohen was responsible for all legal functions, as well as the business units for enterprise risk management, property management, internal audits, equity management and facility management. Additionally, he played a leading role in the mergers and acquisitions activity of AFC Enterprises, and in 2001, was an integral part of the company’s initial public offering.
Cohen played a vital part of the successful transformation of Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, a $3 billion revenue global restaurant chain, and oversaw the company’s $1.8 billion sale to Restaurant Brands International, at a record multiple for a public restaurant company transaction.
Cohen has extensive experience working directly with CEOs and boards of directors on high profile, strategic projects and transactions, including M&A activities, divestitures, joint ventures, franchise and real estate activities, exclusive supply agreements, corporate governance and corporate support services.
Cohen earned his bachelor’s degree from Tulane University and his law degree from Georgetown University Law School.