In December of 2012, we launched our first member group, the Core Chapter. This membership is for established, mission-aligned, founders and CEO’s in the natural products industry. Together, we work through tough business and industry challenges with a carefully facilitated agenda that involves thoughtful evaluation and meaningful connection.
Interested in participating? Or know someone who might be a good fit? We are currently seeking the best and brightest sustainable product leaders committed to making a positive impact on our industry, people, and environment.
Interested in Joining?FIND OUT MORE
CEO & Founder Nativas Organics
CEO & Co-Founder, Pathwater
Shadi Bakour is the CEO and Co-Founder of Pathwater, a bottled water company that provides the first 100% reusable, recyclable bottled water in a sturdy aluminum bottle. An expert in the beverage industry, Shadi’s extensive experience has driven the overall vision and strategy for one of the fastest growing and most disruptive beverage brands of the century.
Shadi is responsible for overseeing all facets of the business, specializing in accelerating ideas through strategic foresight, drive, and determination. Previously, Shadi worked in Consulting and Private Equity at Booz Allen Hamilton and Abraaj Capital. Shadi excelled in academics and athletics from a young age, and received a full scholarship to Culver Military Academy, one of the most prestigious boarding schools in the nation.
Shadi graduated Summa Cum Laude from The George Washington University, where he received a Bachelors of Business Administration in Finance and Economics. Shadi received a Full Scholarship, Dean’s List, and was a Board of Trustees Scholar.
CEO & Co-Founder, Sambazon
Ryan Black is the CEO and co-founder of SAMBAZON, the industry leader in Açai and the first brand to bring organic Açai from the Brazilian Amazon to the United States. Black is a pioneer in the natural foods industry, creating the company in 2000 with his brother Jeremy Black and friend Ed “Skanda” Nichols after a surf trip to Brazil.
After eating his first Açai bowl, Black saw an opportunity to create nutritious, Açai-based products to share with people all over the world while committing to a socially- and environmentally-conscious business model. This was before buzzwords like social responsibility and entrepreneurship existed, and from day one, Black has ensured that SAMBAZON stays true to its founding principles and commitment to doing good. In addition, Black paved the way in helping create the current organic and fair trade certification standards for wild-harvesting the Açai crop where they did not previously exist. SAMBAZON continues to operate under the Triple Bottom Line philosophy, which measures success economically, socially and environmentally. This progressive, forward-thinking culture is thread through the fabric of SAMBAZON today.
Black is also the co-founder of the tri.org, a non-profit organization working to empower and educate millennials into mobilizing and building a more conscious future, socially, in sustainability and economically. Together, with like-minded partners, SAMBAZON, Thrive Market, Numi Tea and Dr. Bronner’s, Black and the tri.org are working to build a community of activists, conscious warriors and change makers.
Prior to co-founding SAMBAZON, Black received his BA in Finance at the University of Colorado at Boulder, then played in the NFL for the Minnesota Vikings and in European Football Leagues. Now, Black lives near the beach in San Clemente, CA and his passions include travel, music, and surfing. He speaks multiple languages, and credits his time in Boulder and his international football career as the stepping-stones to building a socially-responsible, international business.
Ryan and Sambazon joined OSC2 as a community Member in 2018.
Board President, Naturally Bay Area Partner, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
Don is a strategic legal advisor and corporate counsel to emerging growth and middle-market Food & Beverage, Food Tech, and Ag Tech innovators and investors. His clients are based in the major U.S. food hubs, including the Bay Area, Boulder, Brooklyn, Austin and Los Angeles. His law firm, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP (DWT), has one of the largest food & beverage practices in the United States, with over 40 attorneys serving food venture entrepreneurs, emerging brands, larger food companies, and the private equity firms that invest in them, at every level of the food chain from “Farm to Label”. Don is a Founding Faculty Member and member of the Advisory Board of the Food Business School at the Culinary Institute of America (Napa Valley). He currently serves as the Vice-Chair of the board of Directors of KCETLink TV, the public television station in LA, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Technion Society – San Francisco Chapter.
CEO Lotus Foods
Timothy Childs is a parallel entrepreneur, supertaster and awardwinning innovator whose personal approach to creative disruption champions the deployment of new systems to update archaic industries.
A pioneer in the food+technology space, Timothy is cofounder and CEO of Treasure8, a San Franciscobased food innovation and technology company on a mission to solve the nutritional challenges and environmental stresses of a growing global population. Timothy and his team develop, patent and deploy gamechanging, delicious food ingredients, processes and products that are healthier for people and the planet with a keen focus on creating nutritionally dense foods from agricultural and food production remnants.
In 2006, Timothy founded TCHO Chocolate in San Francisco and was the driving and creative force behind the company’s vision and strategy and including TCHO’s flavordriven approach to chocolate making and TCHOSource, an innovative project to improve farmers’ livelihoods and generate prosperity throughout the cocoa value chain. Working in partnership with USAID, TCHOSource has become a model for sustainably focused programs in South America and beyond.
Timothy is a participant in the Google Innovation Lab for Food Experiences, a global collaborative network for leading thinkers and doers in the food space who apply their knowledge and passion towards imagining and shaping the future of food. He also is the founder of World Headquarters, a 73,000 square foot curated design, art and food innovation lab on Treasure Island and home of Treasure8 and the Future Food Center.
Before he brought his Silicon Valley startup mentality to the food industry, Timothy founded a company that developed machinevision systems for NASA’s Space Shuttle program. His background in technology is deeply rooted in the preweb internet and early realtime computer graphics fields. Timothy was directly involved in many early stage internet/computer graphics and virtual reality companies, and cofounded the nonprofit, communitybuilding organizations VeRGe (Virtual Reality Education Foundation in 1991) and the infamous Web3D RoundUP. He continues to embrace advanced visualization tools in all his businesses.
Timothy is a founding member of the board of Illuminate the Arts—presenting organization of The Bay Lights—and a founding member of other advisory boards, such as OSC2. He is an internationally soughtafter speaker and has been featured in hundreds of print, broadcast and online stories by major media outlets, including The Economist, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Wired, Time and NPR
CEO & Founder, All Good
Caroline Duell is Founder and CEO of All Good. Based in Morro Bay, California, All Good makes organic and botanical body care products including All Good Goop, healing balm, and a line of zinc based sunscreens. After years of working in the combined fields of emergency medicine, wilderness education and holistic healing, Caroline turned her farm based salve-making hobby into a business. In 2006, she joined 1% for the Planet, and in 2009, she certified the company as a B Corp. All Good products are available globally in natural foods stores, outdoor and gift shops, online, and as private label purchases for businesses.
Caroline received a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies from the University of Vermont and a Certification in Neuromuscular Reprogramming from California’s Institute of Conscious Bodywork. Caroline and her husband, Ryan Rich, All Good’s VP of Sales and Marketing, love to be outdoors; mountain biking, skiing, kite surfing, climbing and growing food. They live on their organic farm with their equally nature loving daughters, Kalia and Allegra.
CEO of Numi Organic Tea
Brian Durkee is an impact-driven business leader, an educator, and an advocate for change. With more than 20 years in leadership roles in the natural / specialty food industry, he is a dynamic, results-oriented leader with a strong track record of successfully planning, implementing, and directing all facets of strategic and operational activities in multiple rapidly growing, entrepreneurial environments.
Brian currently serves as CEO for Numi Organic Tea, where he has been instrumental to the company’s growth and organizational development for several years. In addition to leading the Numi team and driving overall company strategy and culture, Brian has been an active decision maker in all areas of the business. He has managed strategic partnerships, financial planning and execution, sales and marketing initiatives, global supply chain developments, and product innovation. He travels abroad frequently and has worked intimately with customers and suppliers from more than 35 countries.
Founder & CEO, La Tourangelle
Matthieu Kohlmeyer is a successful natural food entrepreneur with 20 years experience in the industry. Matthieu wrote his first business plan at 21 while attending his MBA in Canada. Maturing his business plan into action, Matthieu proceeded to raise money from Mitsubishi Corp. and start La Tourangelle in California in 2002 as a joint venture with his family business (Huilerie Croix Verte SAS).
La Tourangelle was launched as the first traditional nut oil mill making high quality flavorful & all-natural oils in California. All nut oils made by La Tourangelle are 100% locally sourced and participate to a positive upcycling process where lower grade nuts find a second life as delicious nut oils. La Tourangelle sources mostly organic oils from outside and partners with like-minded artisan oil makers all over the world to offer a full line of oils & organic dressings.
After a successful period of significant growth, Matthieu successfully negotiated the buyout of MIC in 2016. Today, La Tourangelle is a $75M global business with manufacturing facilities in France & California. La Tourangelle is a leading specialty food brand in North America, Europe, and China. La Tourangelle products are distributed in over 35,000 stores globally. La Tourangelle offers branded products and private label products to its customers. With over 160 employees globally and strong relationships with all key American retailers, Matthieu brings vision, execution and a true entrepreneurial spirit to businesses.
Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Lotus Foods
Since 1995, pioneered the introduction of heirloom and specialty rice to the food trade in North America. Lee has specialized in creating supply relationships with smallholder farmers in developing countries who had no previous export experience, playing a key role in capacity building and promoting more inclusive value chains. A member of Social Venture Network, Lee is a frequent speaker at trade and educational events such as the National Cooperative Grocers, International Association of Culinary Professionals, Culinary Institute of America, Clinton Global Initiative, Global Philanthropy Forum, and Yale Global Health & Innovation Conference. Prior to founding Lotus Foods, Lee worked in the insurance industry and as a financial consultant. He is a graduate of the University of Rhode Island.
Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Lotus Foods
Caryl Levine is the Co-Founder and Co-CEO behind Lotus Foods, one of the most innovative, organic and fair trade specialty rice brands in the country. After a 17-year career fundraising in higher education Levine now leads Lotus Foods marketing and sales and is primarily responsible for the image and positioning of the Lotus Foods brand, the development of all packaging and merchandising materials. Recipient of the 2014 Specialty Foods leadership award for vision, Levine has been an invited speaker around the world and most recently at the 2015 World Food Prize, the 2014 Clinton Global Initiative mid-year meeting, the 2013 Social Venture Network Conference and the 2012 Bioneers Conference. Levine is a founding member of the Whole Grain Council and a member of the Social Venture Network. She holds a MPA in Public Administration from the University of Hartford.
CEO Harmless Harvest
Ben Mand is the CEO of Harmless Harvest, a pioneer and leader in U.S. refrigerated premium
coconut water and plant-based dairy. Harmless has been built on a fundamental belief in
“constructive capitalism” – an ecosystem-based approach to business that integrates all the
stakeholders to deliver better products and outcomes for all. Over the past 20 years, Ben has built
his career building and leading responsible businesses. Ben’s career started in the late 90’s when
he took a sabbatical from consulting to volunteer at an organic coffee farm in Costa Rica, where
he discovered a passion for the food he grew by working closely with local farmers.
Since then, Ben has worked in various brand marketing and innovation roles at leading
companies including General Mills, Johnson & Johnson, and Interbrand. He has made an impact
as a change agent, driving improvements in health, sustainability, and social impact while
delivering consistent sales and profit growth. Prior to joining Harmless, Ben oversaw all
marketing, innovation and creative strategy for Plum Organics, a leading organic baby food
brand. Under Ben’s tenure, the brand quickly accelerated from #3 to #1 in the category.
Ben is a seasoned speaker and has been featured at industry events including SXSW, Natural
Products Expo and Advertising Week – speaking about everything from socially minded
business practices to marketing with empathy.
CEO / Chairman of the Gourd, Guayaki Yerba Mate
Chris got his BA in Economics from Harvard University but quickly realized that economics conveniently forgot about sustaining the environment and protecting people. Through his experience with Guayaki and previously with Natural Flavors, a 100% organic, vegan restaurant that employed 25 people and 60 local farmers, Chris is finding that by recognizing common purpose, seemingly disparate groups can integrate social justice, environmental restoration and economic success.
VP of Cooperative Affairs, Organic Valley
Jerry is a lifelong organic consumer who has been with CROPP Cooperative for 20 years, holding numerous positions. During his tenure, he led the development of numerous departments, including Human Resources, Learning & Organizational and Development, Legal Affairs, Government Affairs, Investor Relations, Facilities Management, and Sustainability. Currently, Jerry serves as vice president of cooperative affairs. In this role, he oversees the departments of Human Resources, Learning & Organizational Development, and Sustainability.
Jerry is actively involved in the start-up and development of cooperatives and has consulted with several co-ops during their start-up phase. He has served as chair of the National Cooperative Business Association (NCBA) board of directors and currently sits on the NCBA executive committee. From 2006 to 2015, Jerry was a founding member of the Wisconsin Organic Advisory Council, charged with advising the Wisconsin Secretary of Agriculture and other government officials on issues and policies related to Wisconsin’s organic industry.
In his community, he serves on the Center for Special Children board, and is board president for the Youth Initiative High School in his hometown of Viroqua, Wisconsin. Jerry is a past member of the board for the Viroqua Food Co-op. He earned a bachelor’s of social work degree from Middle Tennessee State University.
Prior to CROPP, Jerry worked as a therapist facilitating group therapy sessions, providing one-on-one instruction and therapy, crisis intervention, and respite services.
Jerry enjoys spending time with his wife and three boys playing sports and reveling in the great outdoors.
Steve Naccarato was a pioneer in the development of organic virgin coconut oil as a successful mass consumer product, helping to launch Nutiva’ s coconut oil product line in 2002. His technical expertise not only helped to overcome the packaging and seal security issues inherent in the manufacture of this product but also was instrumental in developing and maintaining the primary supply from the Philippines.
In the 20+ years of experience, Steve’s evident ability to develop strong businesses, client relationships, and products has culminated in the development of 400+ new products and packaging, including private label items for such companies as Loblaws (Westfair Foods), Canada Safeway, Overwaitea Foods, Costco, Sobeys, 7-11 Convenient Stores, Interprovincial Cooperative (Federated Co-op) and other retailers, distributors, and health and nutrition brand owners. Results-oriented, he also successfully negotiated custom packaging contracts with major multi-national companies.
Steve is grateful to be apart of the health and wellness community offering organic sustainable foods. When he isn’t traveling around the world he enjoys spending time with his four boys in Canada.
Co-founder J.E.D.I Collaborative and Women on Boards Project, and former CEO REBBL
**JEDI Board Committee Member
Co-founder J.E.D.I Collaborative and Women on Boards Project, and former CEO REBBL
Sheryl O’Loughlin is an accomplished entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience leading natural products companies with her trademark bold humility rooted in love.
In 2017, Sheryl introduced her first book, Killing It: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Keeping Your Head Without Losing Your Heart (HarperBusiness). The book has been featured in Fortune, Conscious Company, Inc., Forbes and Huffington Post, among others.
From 2015 to 2019, Sheryl was CEO and “Chief Love Officer” of REBBL, the first plant-based, super herb adaptogen beverage company. In partnership with Not for Sale, a nonprofit dedicated to creating a future without human trafficking, REBBL works to create regenerative and just supply chains.
Sheryl is co-founder of the Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (J.E.D.I) Collaborative. She is also co-founder and board chair of the Women on Boards Project, a nonprofit with the mission of empowering women business leaders and improving diversity and inclusion at the board of directors’ level across consumer brands. Both non profits are focused on supporting and advocating for a more inclusive industry and economy to drive innovation, growth, profitability and justice.
Earlier in her career, Sheryl served as the CEO of Clif Bar and Company. There she led the concept development and introduction of Luna, the first whole nutrition bar for women, which became a $70 million business in three years and continues to be a core brand in the company’s portfolio. She went on to co-found and serve as CEO for Plum, Inc., a healthy, organic food company that aims to nourish kids “from the high chair to the lunch box.” In 2013, Plum was successfully sold to Campbell Soup Company.
After Plum, Sheryl was the Executive Director of the Center for Entrepreneurial Studies at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, and she held a faculty position at Sonoma State University, where she taught hundreds of aspiring entrepreneurs and other professionals.
Sheryl currently serves on the board of directors for Pet IQ Inc. (NASDAQ: PETQ) and the board of non-profit One Step Closer (OSC) as well as the advisory board of S. Martinelli and Company, a family-owned company. She is also a member of the Forbes San Francisco Business Council. Previous boards include Zuke’s Natural Dog Treats, thinkThin Nutrition, Sugar Bowl Bakery, Gardein Plant-based Nutrition, FoodStirs Junk Free Bakery, Once Upon A Farm, American Sustainable Business Council, and the Harvest Innovation Summit. Sheryl supported Zuke’s, Gardein and thinkThin to successful exits.
Sheryl earned her Bachelor of Business Administration from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan and her Master of Business Administration from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. An avid camper and traveler, she lives in Santa Rosa, California, with her husband, Patrick, and their two sons.
Learn more at www.sheryloloughlin.com
Global COO/CFO of Sambazon
Ricardo Perdigao, Global COO/CFO. Ricardo joined Sambazon in 2017 from over 25 years of experience in multiple industries and global enterprises such as Coca-Cola, British American Tobacco and SHV Energy. Ricardo is an experienced international and commercially driven finance executive that held CFO position in different countries such as Italy, South Korea and Brazil. Ricardo led transformational agendas in the areas of cost effectiveness, factory footprint, supply chain finance, pricing & taxation, M&A and held, for 3 years, the role of Chairman of Taxation Group of the European Chamber of Commerce in South Korea.
Co-Founder OSC; CVO & Master Tea Blender behind Numi Organic Tea
Ahmed Rahim is the Co-Founder, CVO and Chief Alchemist behind Numi Organic Tea, the largest premium, organic, Fair Trade Certified tea company in North America. Ahmed is responsible for all of the unique Numi blends and products the company introduces to the marketplace. He started the company in 1999 in Oakland, California with his sister, Reem Rahim Hassani.
At Numi, Ahmed travels to remote regions of the world seeking unique herbs and teas unknown in the United States, building partnerships with farmers and their communities. Numi has proudly benefited the farming community by increasing wages, sponsoring schools, hospitals, community centers, road construction and other needs to improve living standards in farming communities.
Ahmed and his sister Reem have been evolving their vision for Numi through the Numi Foundation, with initiatives that focus on local and global programs, acknowledging and addressing the challenges within their farming communities and in their backyard of Oakland, CA; from education to health and nutrition. Numi Foundation’s Together for H2OPE project is providing clean safe drinking water to farming communities across the globe.
Ahmed co-founded OSC, One Step Closer, a national community of sustainable natural products CEOs and business leaders. OSC strives to leave earth and humanity in better condition than we found it by inspiring natural products leaders to work in innovative and collaborative ways toward positive change. The group addresses the toughest sustainability problems facing our industry and our planet by building new regenerative business models and agricultural systems
Ahmed sits on various for-profit and non-profit boards enhancing their growth and sustainability goals. Ahmed’s core goal is to be in service to those focused on caring for their community and creating positive change for our environment.
Company Website: numitea.com
Co-Owner/VP of Sales & Marketing, All Good
Co-Founder Pure Planet and Alter Eco Americas
Edouard Rollet heads Alter Eco Americas, PBC as co-founder and co-CEO. A seasoned leader and innovator, Rollet brings more than 15 years of experience. As co-CEO, Rollet leads sourcing and supply chains strategy, financial and operational strategy, brand development and innovations. Rollet co-founded Alter Eco in the United States in 2005 with a vision to change the world and introduce delicious, nutritious and environmentally responsible products.
Prior to launching Alter Eco in the US, Rollet was a Senior Trade Attaché at the French Embassy in New York where he specialized in foreign investment, new ventures, media, marketing and mass retail. He has also consulted for the communications department of the UNICEF in Dakar, Senegal. Rollet holds an MBA from The European Institute of Business (IEA-Paris) and an MA in Mass Communications from the University of Florida.
Born in Lyon, France, Rollet moved to the US two decades ago. He enjoys traveling, the outdoors and exploring street food and restaurants around the world. Rollet resides in Mill Valley, Calif. and is married to Ilse Keijzer, founder of Alter Eco Pacific, which serves the Australian and New Zealand markets.
Cofounder & CEO, Klersun
Frederick Schilling has been an intrepid entrepreneur in the natural foods industry for 20 years. As a self-proclaimed instigator-entrepreneur, he has founded 4 industry-influencing enterprises in his career and has been the subject of many provocative media publications, including an award-winning article in the New Yorker by New York Times best selling author, Bill Buford.
In 2001, Frederick founded Dagoba Organic Chocolate, the first chocolate brand in the United States that not only rooted the triple bottom line principles of Planet-People-Profit to that industry, but also opened the door to using chocolate as a canvas for embracing exotic flavors and promoting single origin chocolate, giving rise to the chocolate industry as we know it today.
After selling Dagoba Organic Chocolate to the Hershey Company in 2006, Frederick then went on to co-found three more influential global companies in the organic market.
In 2008, Frederick teamed up with Diego Badaró, a 3rd generation cacao farmer, to start AMMA Chocolate, a vertically integrated chocolate company with operations in Bahia, Brazil. The mission of AMMA is to use cacao as a catalyst for rainforest preservation and restoration. Today, AMMA is regarded as Brazil’s premiere chocolate brand, recognized for its contribution to the country’s environmental and social efforts and for its quality.
Frederick also co-founded Big Tree Farms in 2008; based on Bali, Indonesia, with his business partner Ben Ripple. BTF is now Indonesia’s largest organic food company, operating the largest organic coconut supply chain in SE Asia with over 10,000 small holder farmers. BTF is the global pioneer of coconut blossom nectar-based sweeteners, the fastest growing alternative organic sweetener and coconut aminos. BTF also built, which at that time in 2011, was the world’s largest Bamboo structure.
In 2015 Frederick co-founded Medisun Farms, a hemp cultivation enterprise with a focus on growing organic feminized hemp for the production and extraction of CBD and other valuable cannabinoids. In 2018, Medisun Farms and Kler Solutions merged to create Klersun. Today Frederick is CEO of Klersun, which has become a major ingredient solution provider in the emerging hemp-cannabinoid industry.
CEO and Founder, Miyoko’s Kitchen
Miyoko Schinner is founder and CEO of Miyoko’s Kitchen, makers of an award-winning line of artisan vegan cheese and other dairy alternatives sold in thousands of stores across the country. A vegan for thirty years, Miyoko missed the “cheese experience” and spent years perfecting recipes that would satisfy this craving not only for herself but foodies across a broad spectrum, eventually building a brand that is currently the fastest growing in its category.
Miyoko is the author of five cookbooks, including the bestselling The Homemade Vegan Pantry (Ten Speed Press, 2015) and Artisan Vegan Cheese (Book Publishing Co., 2012). No stranger to media, she co-hosted three seasons of Vegan Mashup, a cooking show that aired on PBS stations nationwide. A coveted speaker, Miyoko presents at conferences, events, and universities across the country about culinary arts, animal rights, and the future of food. She has been featured numerous times in the media, including The New York Times, San Francisco Chronical, Huffington Post, The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Today Show, PBS, and many others. Forbes recently included her in a line-up of women leading the future of food, and the North American Vegetarian Society inducted her into the Vegetarian Hall of Fame in 2016.
Caring deeply about animals, Miyoko, along with her husband, founded Rancho Compasión a farmed animal sanctuary in Northern California, which provides a “forever home” to cows, goats, sheep, pigs, chicken, ducks, and other critter rescued from animal agriculture. Miyoko devotes her life to promoting a lifestyle based on compassion and sustainability in order to create awareness about the consequences of animal agriculture, and do her part to save the lives of animals and the health of the planet.
Books by Miyoko Schinner
The Homemade Vegan Pantry, the Art of Making Your Own Staples (Ten Speed Press, 2015)
Artisan Vegan Cheese (Book Publishing Company, 2012)
The New Now and Zen Epicure (Book Publishing Company, 2001)
Japanese Cooking, Contemporary and Traditional (Book Publishing Company, 1999)
Founder and CEO of Simple Mills
Katlin Smith is the founder and CEO of Simple Mills, a Chicago-based company at the forefront of a clean food movement that is shaping the next generation of natural foods and changing the way America eats. She created Simple Mills after she cleaned up her own diet and realized the tremendous power food has to transform how people felt. Eight years after launch, the company is the #1 baking mix and #1 cracker brand as well as the #2 cookie item in the natural channel; distributed in more than 20,000 stores ranging from Whole Foods to Kroger, Publix, Walmart, and Target; and a driving force in transforming the center aisle by providing innovative, clean snack alternatives in categories traditionally lacking better-for-you options.
Smith, a former management consultant, has been widely recognized for these achievements, including being honored with Forbes 30 Under 30, Inc. 30 Under 30, and Progressive Grocer’s Top Woman in Grocery awards.
Founded in 2013, Simple Mills now offers more than 35 baking mixes, frostings, crackers, cookies, and snack bars that are free of gluten, grain, dairy, soy, GMOs, excessive sugar, gums, emulsifiers, and anything artificial. All products are made exclusively with real, purposeful ingredients like nutrient-rich almond flour and unrefined coconut sugar that make healthy eating deliciously simple with a taste that is on par with familiar favorites.
Dr. Bronners/Brother Davids
Les oversees business development activities for Dr. Bronner’s. This includes supporting the company’s supply chain projects around the world; new product development; strategic and business planning; and identification and evaluation of investment opportunities. He currently sits on the boards of Serendi Coco Samoa Ltd., and LifeDose. Les has over 20 years of experience in the natural products and apparel industries. He was a co-founder of Living Harvest, Dunderdon, and Infinity Sport. He has a Liberal Arts degree from UCLA, and a Masters in Business from Harvard University.
CEO of Peace Coffee
Lee Wallace is the owner and Queen Bean of Peace Coffee, a company on a mission to craft a delicious coffee experience with communities around the globe. A rare CEO whose area of expertise resides in, in her words, “that intersection between mission and money,” she is a sought-after writer and speaker as well as a recognized leader and expert in multiple fields: social enterprise businesses, fair trade enterprises, and specialty coffee importing. Lee sits on the Research Advisory Council for the Specialty Coffee Association and holds an active leadership role in the the B Corps movement. In 2020, Lee received the University of Minnesota’s Outstanding Achievement Award for her success in building an ethical business. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling to new places, puttering around in her garden and hanging out with her dogs Ruby and Felix.
Based in the heart of Minneapolis, Peace Coffee has been proudly roasting, pedaling and brewing outstanding coffee since 1996. Under Lee’s leadership the company has garnered local, national and international recognition – from being named one of the 10 Most Sustainable Coffee Businesses in the U.S. by Civil Eats, to earning the Best Coffee Roaster title by Minnesota Monthly and Growler magazines, to being recognized as one of the top places to work by Minnesota Business Magazine. The company has also been honored with list placements on Best for the World, Community, B Corp, 2018 and 2019; Ten Most Sustainable U.S. Coffee Businesses; and Most Ethical Coffee Companies, Fair World Project.