Speakers & Instructors

 

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Jenn Chen

San Francisco-based coffee marketer Jenn Chen uses compelling words and photography to make specialty coffee companies look stunning online. She believes in the power of creating inclusive digital and in-person communities. Her work has appeared with industry leaders like Acaia, Swiss Water, and Sprudge. When she is not working, you can find her with ice cream in one hand and a donut in another. You can connect with her at jennchen.com or on social media @thejennchen.

Keynote: Social Media: Marketing for Yourself and Your Coffee Company

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Hana Kaneshige

Counter Culture Coffee

Hana is a cafe manager turned coffee educator.

Workshop:
Cherry to Seed: Experiments in Fermentation

Panel:
Pursuing Careers in Wholesale

Selina Viguera

Blue Bottle Coffee

I started in coffee 18 years ago, Specialty Coffee 10 years ago, and have been with Blue Bottle Coffee for 8 years. I started at SF Ferry Building Cafe in 2010, and currently manage the Abbot Kinney Cafe in Venice, CA and have been there since it opened in 2014.

Workshop:
Espresso Fundamentals

Panel:
A Guide to Advancing Your Customer Service

Brent Hall

VP Coffee, Inc

Working as a coffee professional for 20 years, and has served as a barista, roaster, product development manager, customer relations expert, training coordinator, technical service provider, green coffee trader, Brent is now the business development manager for VP Coffee, Inc. There he oversees various functions of the business focusing on sales and marketing, while administrating the customer relations program. He lives in Apex, NC with his wife, two kids, and pets. He serves on the Executive Council for the Barista Guild of America and Chairs the Content Development Committee. He is a certified head judge. He loves coffee through and through.

Workshop:
Dissecting the Espresso Machine

Laila Ghambari

Stumptown Coffee Roasters

Laila Ghambari is the Director of Education and Training Operations for Stumptown Coffee Roasters in Portland, Or. She served 5 years on the Executive Council for the Barista Guild of America and in 2014 she won the United States Barista Competition. She loves hiking and spend time with her son Fitzgerald.

Workshop:
Designing Efficient Barflow

Panel:
Beyond the TNT: Starting and Growing Your Coffee Community
Starting Your Own Cafe

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Matthew Barahura

Intelligentsia Coffee

Matt Barahura is the Wholesale Educator for Intelligentsia Coffee in Los Angeles. Originally from San Diego, he's been in the industry for over 10 years. He's a seasoned competitor, long-time instructor and generally aims to get more people serving better coffee.

Workshop:
Water Chemistry, Beyond the Water
Water Chemistry, The Impact on Flavor

Panel:
Pursuing Careers in Wholesale

Jill Killen

Cloud City Coffee/El Diablo Coffee/Royal Drummer Cafe

Jill opened her first shop, Cloud City Coffee in 2002, thinking that her primary goal was just providing a community meeting space. The coffee bug hit her and she became obsessed with all things coffee related. She has since gone on to open two more shops, is a member of the “brew crew” (related to all things brewing at SCA) and is a certified Q Grader.

Workshop:
Batch Brew Exploration
Brewing Fundamentals

Panel:
Starting Your Own Cafe

Savannah Phillips

Cafe Virtuoso

Coffee educator with 7+ years experience in specialty coffee that devotes herself to co-operating a roasting facility in San Diego as well as running a non-profit SCA campus that provides job training to underserved populations.

Workshop:
Espresso Exploration

Weihong Zhang

BlendIn Coffee Club

Weihong Zhang graduated from Kansas State University and got his PhD degree in Biochemistry. A chance of cupping specialty coffee led Weihong into specialty coffee industry. Weihong is now a licensed Q Arabica Grader, and Authorized SCA Trainer for Introduction to Coffee, Barista, Brewing, Sensory Skills, Green Coffee and Roasting.

Workshop:
Crafting Seasonal Espresso Beverages

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Becky Reeves

Oatly US

Becky Reeves has over 8 years experience as a coffee professional focusing on education and market development. She’ could talk your ear off about regenerative agriculture while also making a strong case for the cinematic serious of DreamWork’s Trolls. She’s a Market Development Manger for Oatly US, and is passionate about accessibility, transparency, and sustainability.

Workshop:
Crafting Seasonal Cold Brew Beverages

Panel:
Pursuing Careers in Wholesale

Dylan Siemens

Onyx Coffee Lab

Dylan Siemens, head trainer at Onyx Coffee Lab in Fayetteville, Ar, is a veteran barista and brewing competitor. In 2017, he won the United States Brewers Cup Championship. Siemens’ aspirations in the coffee industry began in high school, as a customer of new business-owners Andrea and Jon Allen, who would eventually re-brand and grow their business as Onyx Coffee Lab. Siemens joined the team at the age of 19 and quickly became the full-time trainer for the company and their wholesale accounts. His passion for experimentation and discovery drive him to research and test all aspects of coffee extraction. Likewise, his passion for the industry compels him to share his findings and experiences with others in the coffee community.

Workshop:
Compulsory Brewing - A Competitor's Approach

Panel:
Demystifying Competition

Bailey Rayne Arnold

Gregory's Coffee

Beginning her specialty coffee journey in 2010, Bailey currently occupies the role of Director of Education for Gregorys Coffee in NYC. Alongside her team of educators, she facilitates the growth and development of around 300 baristas in three cities. She has taught at MANE, coordinated three seasons of TNTNYC, and is currently serving as Vice Chair of the Content Development Committee on the BGA's Executive Council. She is almost certainly a polymath, and her cat's name is Joey Tribbiani.

Workshop:
Organic Acids

Panel:
A Guide to Advancing Your Customer Service

Jill Fountain

Macchinisti, LLC

Jill Fountain, co-owner of Macchinisti, LLC in Austin, Tx, has successfully blended two of her passions, coffee and engineering, into a satisfying career. Beginning as a barista in Boulder, Co, she quickly fell in love with coffee, and was soon promoted as a head barista and trainer. Having always been mechanically inclined, she did not hesitate to tackle problem equipment. Eventually, she became the in-house technician for this three-location café. After a fortunate apprenticeship opportunity, she was able to realize her goals as an entrepreneur. She now uses her skills and experience to help further the coffee industry by making technical knowledge more accessible.

Workshop:
Dissecting the Espresso Machine

Adam JacksonBey

Tell Coffee

Adam JacksonBey is a competitive barista, Barista Guild Executive Council Member, and proud Virgo who’s worked in specialty coffee for 7 years. A notorious sandwich aficionado, he can often be found on #coffeetwitter at odd hours hoping the algorithm will hide his tweets to no avail. He’s also really smart and nice.

Workshop:
Beyond the TNT: Starting and Growing Your Coffee Community

Kathie Hilberg

Kathie Hilberg has done a variety of jobs in the specialty coffee industry including being a barista, education, production, sales, and roasting. In 2010, after completing her BA in Music, she began her career in specialty coffee. She currently sits on the executive council for the Barista Guild of America and has twice competed in the US Barista Championship. She and her rescue dog Monty live in southern California.

Panel:
Demystifying Competition

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Ori Tuler

Equator Coffee & Tea

Ori Tuler has worked in the industry for five years getting her start at Cloud City Coffee in Seattle, WA.
She is currently a Wholesale Account Manager and Trainer at Equator Coffees & Tea in Los Angeles, CA.
Her biggest passion is building a more inclusive and welcoming community through education and social events, beyond latte art competitions.

Also, corgi butts.

Workshop:
Beyond the TNT: Starting and Growing Your Coffee Community

Liz Dean

The Wing

Liz Dean has been working in the coffee industry for seven years. Her first coffee job was at a Seattle's Best in Borders above Penn Station. She currently works as the Senior Manager of Training for the Wing, where she leads staff and manager training for all-women's co-working and community spaces (including full-service cafes) in New York City and D.C. (and soon San Francisco!). Liz is passionate about using her work to develop and empower the teams she works with in order to create and cultivate inclusive, welcoming community spaces. In her spare time, Liz loves to do yoga, ride horses, eat good food, and spend time with her cats.

Panel:
A Guide to Advancing Your Customer Service

Oodie Taliaferro

Medici

Oodie Taliaferro, Austin-based barista and Dallas native, has spent the last five years transforming the coffee industry across the Lone Star State. Being both queer and indigenous, Taliaferro became acutely aware of the disconnect between coffee companies and the communities they serve. Through participating in the United States Barista Competition and providing coffee to the Austin market, Taliaferro acts as a catalyst of kindness as they bridge the gap between farmers, baristas, and customers through education and excellent customer service.

Panel:
Demystifying Competition

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Sarah Leslie

Leslie Coffee Co.

Sarah Leslie recently moved back to her hometown of Wichita, Kansas and plans to open Leslie Coffee Co. in the historic Delano neighborhood this fall. She serves as the chair of Barista Guild of America and a member of the Barista Guild unification committee. Sarah has spent most of her time in coffee behind the bar or in the training lab. Her favorite drink order to prepare is an americano and hot chocolate.

Panel:
A Guide to Advancing Your Customer Service
Starting Your Own Cafe

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Tyler Duncan

Topeca Coffee Roasters

Tyler works as Topeca’s Wholesale Trainer, and SCA Campus Manager. He has also taught at many venues, including SCA Expo, Barista Camp, various SCA Authorized Training Venues, and Topeca Instruments Division. As an AST, Tyler specializes in both the Brewing and Barista Skills curriculum. He loves tacos, enjoys mowing the lawn, and probably talks too much.

Panel:
Demystifying Competition

Networking:
Mentor Program

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Taylor Cowan

Spirit Tea

Taylor is a career tea educator and the co-founder of Spirit Tea, a specialty tea importer and wholesaler based in Chicago. Taylor splits his time each year between Nepal, Southwest China and the United States. A founding member of the new American Specialty Tea Alliance, he has previously been an instructor of Tea Chemistry and Intro to Tea modules at Barista Camp and will be teaching Foundation of Tea this Access. His current project is the cross-country educational series, the Spirit of Tea Tour, commencing here in Austin this Thursday.

Panel:
Pursuing Careers in Wholesale

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Charles Gonzalez

Rosella Coffee

Charles Gonzalez founded Rosella Coffee in 2014 as his passion for coffee grew into a desire to help others enjoy it as well. In 2017, Rosella expanded to to two more restaurants and two grab-and-go locations in San Antonio. The growth allowed Charles to end a nearly 20-year career in broadcast journalism. And to grow a beard. He lives in San Antonio with his wife Monika and their two children, Olivia Rose and Ella Sofia, who served as the inspiration for the business name.

Panel:
Starting Your Own Cafe

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Mark Michaelson

Onyx Coffee Lab

Mark is the head roaster for Onyx Coffee Lab. He has worked at Onyx since they started in 2012. In 2017 he won the US Roasters Championship and in 2018 he placed third in the US Roaster Championship. Since winning in 2017, coffee has taken him all over the world. He has taught roasting classes in China, South Korea, and even in Portland. Although coffee is a passion for Mark, that will never outshine his love for his wife and three children.

Workshop:
Exploring Roast Profiles