Today we’d like to introduce you to CF Hawkins.
Hi CF, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
Hi! I was corporate for 22 years, working in an industry that I loved. I grew professionally within that company with mad managerial skills but then got caught up in a “downsizing” move and lost that job. Too young to retire and not interested in entering another corporate setting, I set out to work on my bucket list of business opportunities I thought I would enjoy. As I took different courses that dealt mostly with food, I realized what a “foodie” I was, and I met a nice guy running an olive oil shop and I went to work for him. When he got ready to retire from this industry, it just felt right for me to combine my managing skills and my love of good, healthy, quality food. So here I am.
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Everything has its struggles in life. I acquired the business just a couple of months before the global pandemic really took hold of everything and everyone. With being in business for such a short amount of time, I did not qualify for any kind of state or federal assistance. So, determined to make the best of things, I worked seven days a week, upped my social media game and we are still here and moving forward!
Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
We specialize in Ultra-Premium Olive Oils and Balsamic Vinegars. While we are a small specialty food store, our main focus is educating the public about the health benefits of using oils that have never been commercially processed. We deal with farmers from all over the world that produce and ship unadulterated premium olive oil that offers many health benefits, including (but not limited to) anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties and free-radical scavengers. All of that, while tasting delicious.
Do you have any advice for those looking to network or find a mentor?
Our network of local producers is at the core of our business. We carry as many locally produced products that we can and continue to work closely with other small businesses so that it’s a win-win for everyone involved. I’d recommend reaching out to people in your immediate neighborhood or area who love the things you love. That’s the best way to find helpful people who share your passions.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: https://kalamazooolive.com/
- Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/kalamazooolive
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KalamazooOlive