A labor of love – and pizza

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Nikki and Dan Hughes met in 1995 when Dan was assigned to train Nikki on how to be a Figaro's manager. The couple was recently named 2013 Franchise Owners of the Year for Figaro's. (KEIZERTIMES/Craig Murphy)

Nikki and Dan Hughes met in 1995 when Dan was assigned to train Nikki on how to be a Figaro’s manager. The couple was recently named 2013 Franchise Owners of the Year for Figaro’s. (KEIZERTIMES/Craig Murphy)

By CRAIG MURPHY
Of the Keizertimes

The company rule was Dan Hughes couldn’t date an employee.

But dating a fellow manager? There was no rule at Figaro’s Pizza against that.

Dan and Nikki Hughes, owners of the Figaro’s Pizza at 5460 River Road N in Keizer plus one in Salem and another in McMinnville, were recently named 2013 Franchise Owners of the Year for Figaro’s.

But their story starts earlier.

Dan started working at Figaro’s in May 1990. By the summer of 1995 he was a manager for Jim and Paula Newman, who owned several successful Figaro’s stores.

Nikki, who had been working at the Figaro’s on Lancaster Drive in Salem, was promoted to a management position by Jim Newman. Dan was asked to train Nikki starting that August.

“We just hit it off,” Nikki said. “He asked me out by the end of September.”

Before asking Nikki out, however, Dan had to make sure it was permissible with the Newmans.

“The inner company policy is you don’t date employees,” Dan said. “She was a fellow manager, so that was different. But I had to make sure I could do it.”

The two were engaged in May 1996 and married that November.

“It was a good 15 months,” Dan said with a chuckle. “I had asked (the Newmans) if it was all okay. They were happy for us. They knew it was a good fit.”


To read the complete article and other news from around the Keizer area, pick up a copy of the September 6 print edition of Keizertimes, available at stores all around the area. To subscribe to the print edition for just $25 a year, click on the ‘Subscribe Today’ link at the top of the page, call 503-390-1051 or visit our office at 142 Chemawa Road North in Keizer.

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