USWIC Board of Directors
The USWIC Board of Directors consists of 12 volunteer members who serve a 2-year term. The board of directors supports the work of USWIC and provides mission-base leadership and strategic governance. Every year, a number of seats open up for nominations. Members of our community will be elected to serve a 2-year term.
Inaugural Board of Directors.
Executive Team: The initial term limits should last until year 2023 elections. This will give the organization some stability and assurance that goals are being set and achieved during the implementation of the next Executive Committee and stability with the installation of the first of the Directors.
Plan: Elect a 2nd VC. The VC would migrate to the Chair. The Chair would migrate to the Past Chair. The Exec Team would be a three-year commitment.
Directors: The Director positions should be divided between the three regions of the US; West, Central, and East. Half of the initial positions should be extended to 3 years so that all Directors do not expire at the same time.
The USWIC Bylaws are available here.
Meet the USWIC Board of Directors
Renee Espinoza is co-owner of Firedancer Coffee Consultants with primary responsibility for the education and training aspect of the company. Espinoza is an Authorized SCA Trainer; holding professional level certificates in Barista Skills, Brewing, and Roasting. She has extensive experience in events, restaurant, and café management as well as the creation and implementation of employee training programs. Renee is also a past board member of the International Women’s Coffee Alliance (IWCA) and resigned to push the US-based IWCA Chapter organization forward. She continues to find ways to make sure women’s voices are heard and have a seat at the table. As Notorious RBG said, “Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. It shouldn't be that women are the exception.”
Carrie Stein is a serial entrepreneur who founded a café in Dallas Texas and received numerous local and national awards. She opened and ran the cafe for 9 years before a successful exit to new ownership. Carrie has held operations and management positions in the nonprofit and corporate world and has worked as an Economic Analyst for the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and has served as adjunct Communications Professor at UT Dallas. Carrie brings her passion for supporting women entrepreneurs in coffee to the Board of the US Women in Coffee.
Mansi Chokshi joined the coffee industry in 2008 and is currently the SCA’s Regional Community Director supporting SCA Chapters, Competitions Bodies, and professional Guild communities for the Americas region. She manages the scholarship programs of LEAD Scholars, Re:co Fellows, and event-specific programs. Mansi volunteers with the International Women’s Coffee Alliance (IWCA) and is the current Vice President of the board. She’s passionate about community-building, fostering collaborative relationships, and a design thinking approach to problem-solving. She strives for respect for all persons (regardless of race, culture, background, orientation, etc.) and focuses on inclusivity and diversity from an accessibility perspective in her work. Most important to her is personal and professional mental well-being- “happy both inside and out”. Getting resourceful and utilizing her network is something she’s proud to have mastered as a skillset. Mansi resides in Southern California, with her husband and enthusiastic daughter, who likes to call her momma a “coffee-maker.”
Launtia is Co-Founder of the Taylor Gentles Group established in Switzerland in 1994, she has a proven leadership track record in Sales & Marketing in the coffee and cocoa industry bringing over 20 years of experience to the Team. She has served as the Chair for the SCA’s Lecture Committee, a Member of the Roasters Guild Executive Council, a Re-Co Ambassador for the SCA Symposium, and on the NCA Summit Team. Launtia also served as President of the IWCA Board of Directors. In this role, she was a speaker at the 2010 International Coffee Organization’s World Coffee Conference in Guatemala where she addressed the topic of Social Sustainability. As a past VP of Sales & Marketing for Probat Burns, she led the strategic design and implementation of projects for clients spanning the coffee and cocoa Industry. Launtia is currently President of the Taylor Gentles Group operating in Tampa FL, and a Senior Consulting Member of the Firedancer Coffee Consultants Team
1st Vice President
Patricia Schoenbach joined her family business Excelco Trading L.P., a green coffee trading house based in New York, after graduating from Parsons The New School with a Bachelor of Business Administration, in 2014. Before joining the trading team, she started working in the quality and logistics departments. Her present responsibilities include developing new sustainable supplier partnerships, as well as building new customer relationships. One of her key interests is to support women and the next generation in coffee. She became a Licensed Q Grader in 2017.
Emily Mcintyre is CEO of Ethiopian coffee importer Catalyst Trade and the creator of the world’s first Coffee Marketing system. Since she entered the coffee industry in 2008, she’s co-founded multiple coffee businesses including coffee subscription company Crema.co and consults on a variety of topics including operations, marketing, sales, and supply chain management. Her vision is to expand access to sustainable coffee careers to all womxn in coffee. She is a licensed Q Grader and an EO member who brings to USWICA a broad experience as a journalist, founder, and manager in nearly every aspect of the coffee industry.
Dash of sass, founder, and coffee queen, Tia Hoffman is a veteran specialty coffee professional with nearly 20 years of experience in every aspect of the supply stream from farm level to HORECA (hotel/restaurant/cafe) industries. She has successfully owned and operated eateries, a wholesale coffee roastery, a natural soda company, and a certified allied product distributor. Tia further honed her craft working with Illy Coffee, the Specialty Coffee Association, Barista Guild, world-renowned properties, and celebrity licensed coffee brands working with and teaching all over the globe. She is recognized as an industry instructor, a Specialty Coffee Authorized Trainer in Sensory Skills, Barista Skills, Brewing, and Introduction to Coffee. Tia has contributed her time and skillset as the current 2nd Vice President of the International Women's Coffee Alliance (IWCA) US Chapter, challenging the gender gap in coffee. The International Women's Coffee Alliance work is critical to identifying the most effective course of action for female-led policies and programs to secure women's future in coffee. Her favorite coffees are from Brazil. Pretty impressive for someone who had an intense dislike for coffee for much of her life. When Tia is not slurping coffees or traveling to coffee origin countries, she can be found near the ocean or spending time with her beloved family. She is endlessly searching for the perfect shade of red lipstick. Champagne is her to-go drink, and tacos are life. Her love of scuba diving in the Caribbean's shimmering blue waters inspired one of our packaging colors. And yes...she is silently judging how smooth your milk texture is.
2nd Vice President
Nick joined Merrill Lynch Wealth Management in 2017 after a successful career in residential mortgage origination dating back to the begging of 2010. He has dedicated himself to thoroughly understanding the life priorities of a broad range of individuals and families, providing them with personalized attention as well as disciplined, customized investment strategies that complement his ability to pursue the path to the financial lifestyle that is most meaningful to his clients. He works hard to gain clients’ trust and is committed to serving his clients with the care and attention they uniquely deserve to maintain that trust.
Nick graduated with honors receiving a B.S in Finance and a minor in marketing and also holds FINRA Series
Kim Ta is an experienced manager at Coffee Quality Institute supporting individuals in the coffee value chain to meet their goals through education and training initiatives.
Kim is deeply passionate about empowering others. In the six plus years she has worked in the non-profit coffee sector, Kim has helped individuals, businesses, and organizations achieve their own professional development goals. She has successfully managed and grown global training venue programs, mentored individuals to become instructors, and much more. No matter what she is currently doing, Kim is fully committed to giving her all and is invested in seeing people achieve their goals and dreams.