Allen Leibowitz

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Postby allenleibowitz » Tue Jan 17, 2012 8:39 pm

Hello Fellow Roasters.

Thanks to the RGEC for again providing this forum to interact
with all the candidates.

I'm a relatively small roaster that started in a small corner of a
warehouse owned by one of my "sister companies." We've grown
from being wholesale-only to having a site with the roaster,
retail cafe and cupping lab. We sell regionally both directly and
through distribution.

The first SCAA class I attended was a roasting class (Boston, 2003)
where I was in awe of the open and lavish sharing of information.
Since then I've taught at a number of SCAA conferences, regional
and local barista events and food industry conferences. Ironically,
I attended the Guild Retreat for the first time this summer.
Resources and circumstances finally aligned and I found the Retreat
to be the single best industry experience I've had.

It's in that same spirit that I'd like to join the Roasters Guild
Executive Committee. Some things I hope to contribute include:
- experience in course development including "train-the-trainer"
- building membership with the perspective of boot-strapped
roasters and businesses
- furthering great communication among the Guild Members

Simply put, I've benefited greatly from the Roasters Guild and would like
to be one of its (our) servant leaders.

I look forward to more discussion on this board or offline.

Thanks and best regards,

--- Allen Leibowitz
Last edited by allenleibowitz on Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
allenleibowitz
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2010 5:52 pm
First Name: Allen
Last Name: Leibowitz
City: Ann Arbor
State: MI
Zip Code: 48108
Company: Zingerman's Coffee Co.
Roasting Since (Year): 2003

Postby Marty G Curtis » Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:08 pm

Hello Allen

I have a couple questions for you, answer as many as you like.

If elected how can you help or recommend to make the roaster certification program stronger so employers are willing to give time for their roaster to attend or even reimburse them?

How can you help make the roaster certification program stronger and have more meaning to your fellow guild members?

Is there any one thing that you feel we the guild can do better and how will be able to help us achieve this?
Does the company you work for have a problem with you sharing your views about roasting or cupping process?

Thanks you for running and look forward to your answers

Marty G Curtis
Marty G Curtis
 
Posts: 53
Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2010 6:07 am
First Name: marty
Last Name: curtis
City: romance
State: ar
Zip Code: 72136
Company: Combustion System Sales & Service Inc
Occupation: Rebuilder
Roasting Since (Year): 1977
Website: http://www.justquantifycoffeeacademy.com http://www.rozark.com/http:www.qgrader.com
Location: Romance AR

Postby Scapistrant » Fri Jan 27, 2012 3:37 pm

Hey Allen, congrats on the nomination, I have a couple of questions for you:

How can we encourage the use and development of the roasters guild forum? This is a powerful (and low cost tool) to help each other connect on tons of levels. What are some ideas that you have for continued development?

RG membership/retreats can be expensive for some people (even though we all know they are excellent resources in the industry!), what would you recommend the guild doing to developing and sustaining more support?

Thanks!
Scapistrant
 
Posts: 39
Joined: Thu Mar 04, 2010 8:22 pm
First Name: Sean
Last Name: Capistrant
City: Chicago
State: IL
Zip Code: 60640
Company: Metropolis Coffee Co.
Occupation: Roaster
Roasting Since (Year): 2009
Location: Chicago, IL

Postby allenleibowitz » Mon Feb 06, 2012 9:10 pm

Hi Marty.

Marty G Curtis wrote:[....]If elected how can you help or recommend to make the roaster certification program stronger so employers are willing to give time for their roaster to attend or even reimburse them?

Taking this question literally, my value added might be greatest in the communication of the value of the program. The guild has the range of members from entry level roasters to production roasters at multinational corporations. Clearly communicating the value to that range at specific levels would help employers.

Marty G Curtis wrote:How can you help make the roaster certification program stronger and have more meaning to your fellow guild members?

Building a strong(er) body of the train-the-trainer material for the classes and helping teach classes whenever and wherever possible.

Marty G Curtis wrote:Is there any one thing that you feel we the guild can do better and how will be able to help us achieve this?

I'd like to see even closer ties with the BGA and local barista communities. It's where many of our new members will be found. How might we achieve this? Offering roasting classes at barista events and vice versa would be a start.
Marty G Curtis wrote:Does the company you work for have a problem with you sharing your views about roasting or cupping process?

No, but then again I started the company. It's a great question, though and glad you ask it.
allenleibowitz
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2010 5:52 pm
First Name: Allen
Last Name: Leibowitz
City: Ann Arbor
State: MI
Zip Code: 48108
Company: Zingerman's Coffee Co.
Roasting Since (Year): 2003

Postby allenleibowitz » Mon Feb 06, 2012 9:43 pm

Hi Sean.
Scapistrant wrote:How can we encourage the use and development of the roasters guild forum? This is a powerful (and low cost tool) to help each other connect on tons of levels. What are some ideas that you have for continued development?


This is a great question and observation. I used the old forums quite a bit as a reference and haven't used or contributed much on this new one. That said, I love the path the RGEC took having a single forum and not splitting it between public/membership. My own experience guides me in answering your questions. I think we might benefit from some direct encouragement of the membership - personal communication to every RG member encouraging them to write a post, perhaps? Divide the membership count by number of RGEC and it's not a large number.

For me, as I got busier and gained more experience, I had less time and need to follow the forum. This may be true of other members that have been more active in the past. It seems common for forums (and groups) to renorm / regroup. A little encouragement to rebuild momentum may be in order.

For development, continued strong moderation and tight indexing will keep things on point and make the forum easy to navigate. I've always thought a common system for describing roast profiles would help new roasters.
Scapistrant wrote:RG membership/retreats can be expensive for some people (even though we all know they are excellent resources in the industry!), what would you recommend the guild doing to developing and sustaining more support?

Travel is a big part of the cost. I know there are many criteria for the retreat but it would be great to find
a city that minimizes travel expense for a majority of attendees. Maybe it's a city that is a major hub with cheap air and with a shorter travel times to/from the site. For small roasters, every day counts. Saving people even a half day would be a win.
allenleibowitz
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2010 5:52 pm
First Name: Allen
Last Name: Leibowitz
City: Ann Arbor
State: MI
Zip Code: 48108
Company: Zingerman's Coffee Co.
Roasting Since (Year): 2003


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