AJ Francavilla, Senior Director of Digital Experience for North America awarded 2022 Business Equality Network 'Forty under Forty LGBTQ Leader'

January 31, 2022

AJFrancavillaAJ Francavilla, Senior Director of Digital Experience for North America, began his career with Sodexo 14 years ago as a campus intern at Lycoming College in Williamsport, PA. Majoring in Biology and Environmental Policy, a field AJ intended to pursue post-graduation. However, his contributions to Sodexo from the start lead him down a different path.

While in school, AJ served as the SGA president thus forming a collaborative working relationship with the Sodexo team and Lycoming College. He also worked on campus for the IT Department which organically lead itself to growing the relationship. As a result, in the summer of graduation, Sodexo approached AJ asking him to join the team as an intern to undertake a barcoding project which would enable better tracking of sales and improve the speed of service. The success of this project at Lycoming piqued the interest of the organization and spurred a larger cross-segment standardization of the practice. Thus, he was recruited to stay on board and work through the larger project.

AJ has since worked on projects such as deploying Sodexo’s first mobile ordering platforms in 2011. He then moved on to lead Digital Strategies within the Universities segment from 2013 – 2018. From there he transitioned to Food Platform where he led the mobilization of digital strategy and created the strategy, vision, and roadmap for central marketing. AJ is now the Senior Director of Digital Experience for North America where he works in a cross-discipline matrix approach to bring visions to life.

AJ credits his internship with allowing him the opportunity to explore the world beyond academia, helping him gain an understanding of how foodservice works on campus and to see the bigger picture as a business. AJ notes that his favorite part of working for Sodexo has been the opportunity to travel to over 160 campuses and sites and the chance to see much of the country. He also enjoys watching his projects and hard work come to life, such as mobile ordering. “It’s rewarding to see that impact on the customer experience.” Additionally, he is thankful for Sodexo’s commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion noting the empowerment that is put on the notion of bringing one's whole self to work. AJ has recently been recognized by Business Equality Network as a 2022 Forty under Forty LGBTQ Leader.

AJ’s advice to interns is “Keep an open mind, be fluid, and able to adjust. There are many ways to grow your skill sets and an opportunity may come about that changes what you think you want to do. I planned on focusing on environmental policy which didn’t turn out to be the case, but I love what I do.”