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Our Team

A native of Naples, FL, Drew Hedlund has been working in restaurants since he was a kid. “I’ve done it all,” he shares, “From working as an expediter to serving tables to working the line,” he’s been involved in nearly every role.

A 1999 graduate of Johnson & Wales University, Drew served as the Resident Chef of Dewees Island and as the Chef de Cuisine at the former 101 Pitt in Mt. Pleasant. Hedlund joined the team at Fleet Landing just after opening, ascending to Executive Chef and helped make the restaurant the success it is today.

When Weesie + Tradd were concepting Tradd’s, they looked no further than tapping Drew has their Executive Chef. His dedication to his team, positive attitude, and acumen in the kitchen makes him an ideal choice to launch Tradd’s, a modern, American restaurant inspired by warm and welcoming hospitality, gracious and accommodating service, and sophisticated style.

Drew Hedlund

Executive Chef

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Abby Mertz

Special Events + Sales Director

Our Team

Both native Charlestonians, Weesie and Tradd Newton have a deep-rooted relationship with the local hospitality community.

Tradd grew up working in his family’s supermarket business, which they operated throughout the southeast. In 1998, the company purchased a struggling McCrady’s restaurant. Tradd was tasked with running the restaurant for many years, and succeeded in transforming it into the AAA Four Diamond establishment that remains today.

Determined to set out on their own, Weesie and Tradd opened their first restaurant, Fleet Landing, in 2004. Located on the Charleston Harbor, Fleet Landing quickly became one of the peninsula’s most popular dining spots. After many years of careful planning, traveling, and eating inspiring meals along the way, the duo opened their second restaurant, Tradd’s, in 2018.

Weesie and Tradd are both passionate about philanthropy and have a longstanding history of giving back to a variety of local boards and charitable causes. Weesie co-founded Women Making a Difference in 2002, which provides grants to local organizations to assist women and children. Since its inception, Women Making a Difference has generated more than $1 million in grants to Charleston-based charities. Tradd served on the board for Lowcountry Children’s Center for many years, and was recognized for his work with a national philanthropy award in 2017.

Weesie and Tradd have three children and live in James Island.

Weesie + Tradd Newton


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Brandon Buck

Chef De Cuisine

Sam Richardson

General Manager

Courtney Simpson

Executive Pastry Chef