CEO, Cultivate Coffee
Winner of YNPN LINK 2019
How did you end up in the coffee world?
My wife and I have always worked in the nonprofit and community building world, so naturally, we have often “officed” out of various coffee shops throughout Phoenix. As a self-proclaimed foodie and a lover of all things local, I get excited about trying new places and experiencing their unique spin in things. Out of this, my love for coffee grew. Not only because the art and science behind growing, roasting, and brewing fascinated me, but also because of the community that is often developed around cups of coffee. So, when we decided to start a business to offer job training to vulnerable youth, both of our passions and curiosity for coffee seemed a great fit!
What motivates you?
We’re most motivated by seeing people and our community as a whole flourish. We want to cultivate the best out of the people and places we work with.
How did you find out about LINK and why did you decide to enter?
Kimberly Roland of the Better Business Bureau recommended we get connected to YNPN and participate in LINK. It sounded incredibly fun and I was excited to meet other passionate community builders.
What did you learn while going through the process?
I think the biggest takeaway for me was the knowledge I gained about each of the presenter's organizations and the great work they’re doing. It was really encouraging hearing their passion and the stories of other people doing great work in the valley.
How did you feel when you found out you won?
I was honestly shocked! I believed I had a strong presentation, but so did so many other presenters. I was just sitting there thinking, “This was totally worth it to get to know these 5 great people and to go through the process and to share Cultivate with this audience”, and I started picking in my head a couple of the presenters who I thought would win and all of the sudden my name was called. I was humbled to be picked.
What tips would you pass on to future LINK participants?
Enjoy the process, get to know the other organizations being presented, and speak from your heart about your own work. Don’t worry too much about presenting to an audience and the technical things that go along with that or whether you’ll remember all your words. You know your organization, your work, and your passion. Speak from that.
Any parting thoughts about LINK, YNPN, nonprofits, AZ, life in general…?
I really appreciate YNPN and the work to highlight and inspire nonprofit work. There are a lot of great people doing great work in our valley and I’m incredibly grateful for that. I’m a Phx native and love this city and state, so to see so many people come together for the sake of identifying the broken areas and working to bring restoration or some kind of healing is encouraging to me.
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