At Cafe Campesino, creating a caring global community starts at home. We strive not only to treat one another with dignity and respect, but also to promote teamwork, to celebrate each other's achievements, and, of course, to have fun. The Cafe Campesino team includes:
Dave Campbell: Customer Service Manager
Dave is a North Carolina native who did a rewarding 2-year stint at Koinonia and then naturally eased over to Cafe Campesino. Here he impressed one and all by his experience with web stuff and his ability to lift heavy coffee bags . Alas, the staff continues to be enthralled by the calculator that seems to be embedded in Dave's brain as well as his zeal for finding a good bargain on the internet. In his spare time, he home-brews his own beer, is a fantastic vegan cook, and swills lots of Critical Mass blend.
Nema Etheridge: Retail Manager
Nema can clearly remember the first time she walked through the doors at Cafe Campesino: two men in camouflage overalls were drinking coffee as salsa music pumped out over the sound system. That neat combination of Southern and international flair lured her to become an intern and later a staffer. She holds Americus in high esteem due to its sense of community, ample volunteerism, and social justice origins and legends. Nema joined a Habitat for Humanity Global Village trip to Ethiopia in 2013 (where she also did coffee work), would love to do a summer cycling tour of Quebec, and once spent a year in France as a nanny.
Hannah Mercer: Sales, Customer Service, and Training
Hannah hails from the nearby town of Cordele, Ga. While she isn't a native of Americus, she has been a resident for over 5 years, and claims it as her home. She cites the caring atmosphere and sense of community as what drove her to apply at Cafe Campesino, first as a barista, then as Coffee House Manager. She starts every day with a double shot of espresso, but when she's drinking coffee prefers "whatever we're brewing that day, black. Every coffee we have is amazing, no need for cream and sugar!" If pressed she says her favorite is Mad Poet or Mexico Full City. A ten year veteran of the service industry, her favorite part of the job is interacting with the customers and sharing the good word about Cafe Campesino. Her memory for customer's names and drink orders is impressive, calling most customers by name and asking if they want "the usual." When she isn't behind the bar or running around the Coffee House, Hannah is finishing her B.A. in English with a concentration in professional writing, reading, or trying to convince her dog to go on a walk.
Marcia Dupree: Bookkeeper
Marcia exudes flair, class, and order to both colleagues and customers alike. She parlays her years spent in banking as a Controller and HR Supervisor to keep the accounts of Cafe Campesino organized and accurate.....and free of coffee spills. She relishes having all her family locally in Americus, started raising chickens last spring (and gives away tons of free-range eggs), and counts her best vacation as a 2009 trip to Montana and Wyoming with her husband and one of her daughters. Her next big trip? Taking the grandkids to Disney World.
Itzel Reyes: Production Manager
Itzel celebrated her first year at Cafe Campesino this November and has been constantly enthralled with the whole process of Fair Trade coffee production and how it involves so many different hands at so many different places. This Mexico native is indeed a coffee drinker herself and pays homage to her homeland by sticking with Mexico Full City Roast as her favorite due to its nutty, chocolate tones. She has a 6 year old son who has boundless energy, just returned from an action-packed trip to California (including visits to the Golden Gate Bridge AND Disneyland), and hopes to do a repeat Spring Break jaunt to Daytona Beach in 2014.
Karen Montano: Barista & Production Assistant
If you ever wonder who arrives first at a coffee shop to brew that vital, inaugural carafe, look no further than Karen. An avowed early riser, she bounces in at about 6:15 AM, gets things set up for the day, and deserves almost as much kudos as The Founding Fathers. Karen is indeed a coffee drinker and calls a tie for her favorite between Bolivia Medium Roast and Peru Viennese Roast. She and her family play copious amounts of competitive vollleyball on weekends. And, she and her husband would love to take a trip to Spain both for their fluency in Spanish as well as his being a diehard soccer (football) fan who pulls for Barcelona.
Ethan Ryan: Roaster
Ethan grew up right here in Americus and became a barista while in college in Montgomery. He freely admits that he drinks a bit too much coffee, and he gravitates toward Peru Viennese Roast and Colombia Medium Roast - both for their warm flavors. Part of what drives Ethan toward Cafe Campesino is "the care with which we treat the coffee as well as the people producing and handling it all along the process. We are invested in making sure that no one gets a raw deal, from the farmer to the customer. It's definitely an idea that I can get behind." His best vacation was a trip to Atlanta with friends to take in two symphonies and The High Museum of Art. He is a chess aficionado and improves his skill with books and online sources but also likes just playing the game with friends. He's an avid reader (Sherlock Holmes stories, Walker Percy fiction) and also plays the guitar.
Bill is equal parts pied piper and serial entrepreneur. An Americus native, his extremely frayed passport is proof of his frequent travels to visit our coffee producer partners. Bill's favorite color is actually the palette of colors on the Cafe Campesino label: orange, red, green, and brown since it reminds him of Africa and Central America. Amongst his many side ventures is growing organic blueberries (a superfood which he consumes daily!) on a family farm just outside Americus. His favorite TV show has always been "Gilligan's Island"; he was and is entranced with their resourcefulness and how many ways they used bamboo. On a serious side, Bill is an expert in the fair trade and coffee supply chain world, though he would be the last to admit it. Also, the staff concur that he has a brilliant financial mind, and everyone who works for him is a changed person....for the better! Through his leadership and example, Cafe Campesino has become part of a greater movement - with emphasis on social entrepreneurship, sustainability, & business by the Golden Rule.
Geoffrey Hennies, AKA Peaceful Traveler, discovered Cafe Campesino while volunteering at nearby Koinonia Partners
, our first, and one of our largest wholesale customers. Over the last 15 years, he has followed a path of simple living while offering service to communities and individuals across the country including spending 2-1/2 years helping groups with their rebuilding efforts in New Orleans. Apart from helping with some of our outreach events, he is also offers tech support and is organizer of Cafe Campesino's web presence along with other social justice organizations with Lowthian Design Works
. If you have a good project for him contact him on his website
"If there is one thing I want Cafe Campesino customers to know, it is that roasting and delivering the best fair trade coffee in the country isn't enough," says Tripp Pomeroy, board member and former president. "In order for us to truly make a difference, we need to ensure that the Cafe Campesino "experience" is a uniquely positive one...consistently. Our customers should feel satisfied, if not energized, by their interaction with Cafe Campesino. Ultimately, developing great relationships with our customers is part and parcel to building and sustaining the great relationships we have with our producers and making fair trade flourish." Tripp is a long-time friend of Bill, whom he met while volunteering with Habitat in 1989-1990. He has more than 15 years of working experience in business and new venture development and management, international trade, sales and marketing and communications. He has lived and worked in Mexico and Paraguay (where he met his wife) and has worked on a variety of business ventures in Argentina, Brazil and Italy. He is fluent in Spanish. "Based on my experience in Latin America and the Caribbean," Tripp says, "fair trade is one of the most effective ways to instill ethical, compassionate and transparent business practices in a world where they are sorely lacking, at the expense of so many good people." In his free time, Tripp enjoys landscaping, reading, throwing horseshoes and playing with his little critters, which include two children and a fun-loving cat. Baristas in Our Coffeehouse: