Founder, Coffee Lab International and Vermont Artisan Coffee & Tea
A native of Lisbon Portugal, Mané has worked in the Wine and Coffee Industries for the past 18 years. In 1985 Mané relocated to the Alexander Valley in California where he worked as a winemaker and viticulture specialist. In 1990, he moved to Vermont where he began working in the specialty coffee business as a coffee cupper and coffee research analyst. In January 1995, Mané created Coffee Lab International, an independent coffee and beverage laboratory and consulting firm supporting the coffee industry through product development, quality control and sensory analysis. In January 2002, he started Vermont Artisan Coffee & Tea a new concept in local coffee: roasting, distribution and sales. Mané is an active member of the Specialty Coffee Association of America (S.C.A.A.) whose mission is to develop a common forum for coffee excellence and sustainability through education and cooperation. Mané is a current member of the Technical Standard Committee and was recently elected to the Roasters Guild Executive Council.
President, E&C Consulting
Over the past 15 years, Ed has worked with literally hundreds of clients in the planning and opening of their coffee businesses, as well as troubleshooting for existing, and struggling retailers. Ed has been personally involved with employee training, and the store openings of nearly 100 coffee businesses. Previous to his present career, he was an owner/manager of 3 retail coffee operations, as well as his own successful restaurant. Prior to taking the helm of E&C Consulting, Ed co-founded “Bellissimo Coffee InfoGroup” and was their senior consultant for over 15 years. While at Bellissimo he was co-developer of many of their core educational products, such as the “Espresso 101” training DVD, and the 700-page business start-up manual, “Bean Business Basics”. Ed also created and taught the business fundamentals portion of the American Barista & Coffee School, up until August of this year. A frequent contirbutor to coffee periodicals, Ed holds the distinction of having conducted more educational seminars at the “Coffee Fest” trade shows than any other industry speaker. Because he speaks about the operational and profitability issues that so often challenge coffee retailers, he is an industry favorite and considered an expert in concept development, business start-up, and store operations.
President, Cirqua Customized Water
David is the acknowledged expert in leading edge research on “formulated” water and ingredient-grade water for the specialty coffee & tea industry. Lecturing on water “formulation”, treatment technologies, reducing costs, protecting equipment and enhancing beverage flavor, David guests on talk radio and TV. Visit www.Cirqua.com.
Caroline Bell, Co-Owner, Café Grumpy, NYC
Growing up playing Lemonade Stand on her father’s computer while drinking tea, Caroline always realized the importance of having a tasty beverage in hand. Caroline’s relationship with coffee developed over the years. She spent hours in high school drinking coffee in New Jersey diners, prepared coffee for roommates in college, then served coffee while waiting tables. Caroline, along with her husband Chris, opened the first Café Grumpy in Greenpoint, Brooklyn in 2005. Their second store opened in Chelsea in 2006 followed by a third in Park Slope in 2009. In Fall 2009, the Greenpoint location became home to a coffee roastery.
Founder and Owner, Oren’s Daily Roast Since opening his first store in 1986, on First Avenue and 82nd Street, he has grown Oren’s Daily Roast to ten stores, a roasting plant, and web site selling the highest quality single origin coffees roasted daily and delivered to the stores within 24 hours. The concept was to buy the very best green coffee, roast it up fresh every day, and sell it at reasonable prices. That concept is still operative today.
Oren has done every job in the company from barista to buyer, from roastmaster to real estate (some with more joy than others). Along the way Oren’s Daily Roast has picked up awards as Best Brewed Coffee in New York by New York Magazine, winner of the first ever Roaster’s Choice Award—a national competition of roasters across the country, as well as showing how to brew the perfect cup of coffee on the NBC Today Show.
Oren is most proud of the Oren’s at Origin Program that links the long supply chain all the way to the farmer ensuring both the highest quality coffee and the best prices for the farmer with the premium paid for quality, not quantity. Besides ensuring proper payment to farmers, an offshoot of this program has led to Oren’s projects bringing clean water to a community in Ethiopia that had none, and to renovating a school in Ethiopia as well.
Oren currently lives in New York City, close to the stores, with wife Nancy and sons Andrew and Sam.
Manager-Coffee Excellence, Dunkin' Brands Jim has experience in every aspect of the coffee industry—from his start in the 1970’s at one of the country’s first specialty coffee roasters to roasting green coffee at one of the largest companies in the world (Sara Lee/Douwe Egberts) to his cupping skills, Jim is a highly regarded member of the coffee industry. Today Jim enjoys engaging his cupping skills at Dunkin, as one of the tools needed to help select Dunkin Donuts Quality (DDQ) coffees. Jim is active in the coffee industry and has been recognized for his coffee knowledge and skills. He is a certified Q grader, the most rigorous coffee skills certification program in the industry. He has also judged at the internationally recognized Cup of Excellence program, in which fine coffees from small farmers are judged by international cupping juries, and then auctioned on the Internet.
Vice President/Coffee Merchant, Atlantic (USA), Inc.
A second generation coffee merchant, Steve is a specialist in sales and origin procurement. After 15 years as Manager of Quality Control for J. Aron & Co., he stepped in at Atlantic USA's Vice President, a position he has held since 1991. Steve is also a former president of the SCAA, an ICE grader and an arbitrator for the GCA.
Vice President of Environmental Affairs, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters
Paul has a vision of accelerating Green Mountain Coffee’s leadership in the environmental arena by using climate change as a competitive advantage.His initial efforts to map the company’s environmental footprint have resulted in significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. Paul has initiated programs and processes that exhibit his belief that environmental practices are typically best business practices.His focus on the four R’s (reduce, reuse, recycle, recover) through the use of EMS (Environmental Management System) has diverted much of the waste stream resulting in a financial revenue stream.
Prior to joining Green Mountain Coffee in 1993, Paul founded and managed Baseline Solutions, a consulting company focused on bottom line improvements in manufacturing operations, pollution compliance, equipment design and process layout. During this time, GMCR was a major client for Baseline Solutions. Paul graduated from Boston State College with a major in sociology and a minor in education. After teaching for four years he was awarded a fellowship to Fitchburg State College, earning an ME.
Mother Parker's Tea & Coffee
Dennis Dran has more than 27 years of experience in coffee, having had responsibilities in a wide variety of areas encompassing soluble coffee manufacturing, product quality, Total Quality Management, Business Process Reengineering, product development, technical customer service, green coffee quality and organic certification. He has been a Certified Quality Engineer with the American Society for Quality and is a licensed coffee grader for the New York Board of Trade / ICE Intercontinental Exchange, and a licensed Q-Grader for the Coffee Quality Institute. Dennis is employed as Manager of Product Technology and Development with Mother Parker's Tea & Coffee and works from an office / lab in New Jersey.
Technical Services Director, Cirqua(R) Customized Water (TM)
Skip brings over a decade of experience and support to the specialty coffee & tea beverage retailer. His knowledge of the brewing and extraction process, and technical expertise in water "formulation" systems, has contributed to the success of many hundreds of establishments in your industry. With attention on the 98.5% of the beverage that is water, Cirqua pioneered the water quality standards now used by the largest chains in the industry. Skip has been the leading force in the field demonstrating how "formulation" works and providing information on the equipment to achieve that golden cup.
The culmination of a coffee heritage that began four generations ago when his great-grandfather emigrated from Germany and established himself in Cobán, Alta Verapaz, Guatemala, William Hempstead served on the Anacafe Board of Directors from 1987-1993, serving as President in 1993. In 2000, he was reelected as Director, a position he has held since that date. During his tenure with Anacafé he has inspired and developed marketing projects such as: Guatemala's eight coffee regions; Rainbow Mountain, Guatemalan Coffees canned coffee product for the Japanese market place and he has developed the Atlas of Guatemalan Coffees, where all farms that produce coffee have been identified with GPS technology, and most recently has coordinated Anacafé’s recent publications, Green Book and Portraits of Quality. William has also edited two books: "The History of Coffee in Guatemala" and "Four Centuries of Cartographic Expressions of the Isthmus of Central America, 1500-1900".
Co-Owner, Coffee Lab Roasters
A retired chef of 15 years, Mike is originally from Southern Florida were he schooled himself as executive sous-chef at both Maxwell’s Chophouse and New York Prime. He worked for Unique Restaurant Concepts for three years, where he concentrated on opening new restaurants. He has since relocated to Westchester County and has worked as sous-chef at Angelo and Maxies mid-town Manhattan, Chef de Cuisine at Harry’s of Hartsdale Steakhouse and Oyster Bar, and Executive Chef at Umami Café. Since 2003 Mike has been a co-owner of Coffee Labs Roasters, a Rainforest Alliance Certified, Bird Friendly Certified, Fair Trade Certified and Cup of Excellence member located in Tarrytown, NY. In addition to being an owner, roaster and champion barista, Mike is an active member in various coffee organizations, a quality cupping judge and teaches coffee education classes at Westchester Community College.
President, Cafe Imports
Andrew Miller is the president and founder of Café Imports, a boutique green coffee importing company based in Minneapolis MN. He has a B.A. from the University of Minnesota and twenty years of restaurant experience before launching an importing business in 1993.
Fourteen years later, he and the Café Imports team are sourcing and selling some of the world’s finest coffees and working with some of the nation’s best roasters to bring a revolutionary coffee experience to the people. They are working with Cup of Excellence coffees, innovative new “Miro-lots” , building a state of the art coffee lab and conducting cutting edge green coffee storage experiments to continue the knowledge curve and expand the possibilities of great coffee.
He currently serves on the SCAA Professional Development and on the Advisory Committee for the Cup of Excellence.
Trader, Atlantic (USA), Inc.
Historian, South Street Seaport Museum
Although Jack Putnam has done time in the hospitality industry, his chief acquaintance with coffee is as a consumer in his earlier incarnations as seafarer, editor of scholarly books at three university presses, bookseller, boat-builder and tour director. He has for some years been historian at the South Street Seaport Museum, where he has worked since 1982.
Director of Business Development, S&D Coffee
Stephen Schulman has been active in the coffee industry for the past 25 years. His first 15 years were spent in his family’s NYC metro area food service coffee roasting business. This experience allowed him to be involved in all aspects of running a multimillion pound a year roasterie. In 2000 Mr. Schulman joined renowned specialty roaster, Dallis Coffee in NYC. While always involved in sales and marketing, Stephen held the title of Roast Master and was responsible for all green coffee purchasing and blend creation. In September of 2008 Stephen joined the second largest food service roaster in the US, S&D Coffee of Concord, NC as Director of Business Development. With S&D’s reach and progressive culture, combined with Mr. Schulman's extensive knowledge of the specialty segment, contributions to our industry are sure to continue.
Executive Director, Cup Of Excellence
Susie Spindler co-created the Cup of Excellence program and is now the Executive Director for the Alliance for Coffee Excellence, Inc. the non profit organization which owns the program. Her experience includes marketing and management for coffee, tourism and even a grizzly bear facility as well as being co-owner of a small advertising agency. She holds a graduate degree from Thunderbird in international management and marketing.