Representatives from Minnesota's Punch Pizza will be attending Tuesday night's State of the Union Address as guests of First lady Michelle Obama. WATCH LIVE: You can watch the State of the Union live on FOX 9 and myfox9.com/live (starting at 7:55 p.m.)
Founder and co-owner John Soranno and employee Nick Chute will be recognized by President Barack Obama for establishing a starting wage of $10 an hour for their 8 Twin Cities locations.
Punch announced in Nov. that it would increase wages to a minimum of $10 for entry-level employees and pay other positions higher wages to attract and retain quality employees.
"For a small company that started with one store in Highland Park, and has been recognized for our food for many years, it proves that if you do the right thing, people notice," Soranno said. "The sweat and hard-work that our employees give to make our pizza and service excellent is emblematic of the American Dream."
PUNCH FAST FACTS
- Pizza cooks are paid $12-15 an hour, the most skilled cooks at a level equivalent of more than $30,000 a year
- New manager salary/bonus more than $50,000 a year and experienced general manager pay of $100,000 a year
- They launched Punch University which includes an Italian demonstration and practice oven, video studio for training films and a multi media manager training facility
- Their "Pizza Cam" acts as a quality control system that records every single pizza cooked at all locations for training and quality analysis