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Resilience

Member Highlight: Sunrise Coffee

Juanny Romeo opened her first coffee shop during the Great Recession and over the years added several Las Vegas-based Sunrise Coffee cafes to the flagship—along with a deepening passion for both the product she sold and the customers who came in to try it. “The community we have is so important to me,” Juanny says,…

Sunrise Coffee: Serving Up Coffee, Community and Connectivity During COVID-19

For Juanny Romeo, coffee has always been brewed with a little bit of hardship and a whole lot of community. A former barista, Juanny opened her first coffee shop on the first day of the Great Recession in 2008. Now, she owns three (soon to be four!) Sunrise Coffee cafes and couldn’t think of anything…

Goodr: Feed More, Waste Less, and Digital-First

While feeding people on the streets of Atlanta in 2013, Jasmine Crowe was angry. She knew that every year, millions of Americans suffer from the effects of food scarcity – and yet, huge amounts of edible food are dumped in landfills.  So, she decided to do something about it.  Today, she is CEO of Goodr, a…

Peeko Oysters Has Hope for a Digitally-Enabled Future

Oyster farming is a tough business – but CEO Peter Stein’s determined grit as an oyster farmer served him well when the COVID-19 pandemic took everyone by surprise. Peter has always been interested in aquaculture. When he found himself laid off from a job in the educational software industry, he decided to turn a difficult…

Member Highlight: Okabashi Brands

Okabashi CEO Sara Irvani is a third-generation shoemaker. The company she leads has been manufacturing shoes in Georgia since it was founded by her grandfather, an Iranian expatriate, in 1984. Sara is proud of Okabashi’s tradition of not only making shoes in the U.S. but doing so in an environmentally and socially conscious way. Sara…

Helping Students Master Math During A Shutdown

As a student, Marcus Blackwell used his piano-playing skills to overcome his “math phobia.” Now, Blackwell’s educational app Make Music Count is helping 3rd – 12th grade students across the country master addition, subtraction, fractions, algebra, and more – while helping parents successfully homeschool their children during the pandemic. Blackwell began playing piano at age 5,…

The Spice House: Supporting Small Businesses While Staying Tastefully Safe

The Spice House is as much a community as it is an expert spice business. The 60-year-old business has a steady customer base of restaurants, chefs, and foodies, as well as a close-knit network of suppliers (with some so secret, even CEO Charlie Mayer doesn’t know them).  Mayer calls The Spice House stores “a sensory…

Name Glo: From Producing Neon to Protecting New York’s Health Care Workers

Name Glo co-owners Sas Simon and Lena Imamura are no strangers to finding innovative ways to fulfill a need – whether that need is custom neon signs or protective gear during a pandemic. The New York-based company’s story began in 2014 when Simon was scouring New York for someone to produce a neon sign of…

MedHaul: Providing Critical Medical Transportation For Those In Need

When Erica Plybeah founded MedHaul in 2017, she never could have anticipated its life-or-death importance only three years later. MedHaul – which has been called the “Uber of specialty medical transportation” – is making a difference by managing patient transportation to and from medical offices, clinics, and hospitals during COVID-19.  The company has been 100% digital and…

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