When Jim Hyatt, CEO of Atlanta-based Church’s Chicken, reached one of the world’s highest mountain peaks, he saw it as both a personal achievement and a philanthropic enterprise. 

Mr. Hyatt, 57, and his wife, Christa, joined five other couples seeking to summit Mount Kilimanjaro, which rises nearly 20,000 feet above Tanzania and Kenya in East Africa. They took a photo at the top Church’s Chicken flag signed by employees back in Atlanta.

The CEO saw the climb as a team effort. Employees donated nominal sums for every 100 feet ascended, which will go into an internal foundation to help Church’s employees during tough times. The chicken chain employs 25,000 people in the United States and 25 countries. Mr. Hyatt is to personally match the donations, which are still coming in, the company said in a news release. 

During the climb, Mr. Hyatt drew on messages of support from back in Atlanta, which he checked on an iPhone powered with a solar charger. 

“When we reached the top and unfurled the Church’s Chicken flag there were no words that could truly describe this achievement,” he said. 

Visit www.churchs.com for more information. 

As managing editor of Global Atlanta, Trevor has spent 15+ years reporting on Atlanta’s ties with the world. An avid traveler, he has undertaken trips to 30+ countries to uncover stories on the perils...