Mark's journey with business, entrepreneurship, and coffee has been somewhat unconventional. After college, Mark began his career in commercial real estate in San Diego where he gained valuable business experience and learned from some of the best in the industry. After realizing the corporate grind was not what he wanted, he knew he needed to work for himself. "I remember the first time I went to Coffee & Tea Collective in North Park in San Diego. After visiting that place, I knew I was going to eventually work in coffee". Mark spent the next few years selling real estate and honing in on coffee. Over time, he became great friends with Daniel Kam and Kevin Kim, the founding owners of Solid. Eventually, he became the third owner and Managing Partner. On the experience, Mark says, "We all kind of knew right away that it would work out. We joke and call ourselves the triple-braided cord: 'for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.'"
Jo-Jo is our retail store manager at both the Artesia and Santa Ana Locations. She wears a lot of hats: from day to day you can find her placing stock orders, scheduling, working behind the bar, etc. Ultimately, we rely on Jo-Jo for a lot, and she plays a huge role in making sure Solid runs smoothly day in and day out.
Jo-Jo is very easy going, and she's really fun to work with. A self described Jack of All Trades: she's got experience with calligraphy, graphic design, event planning, cooking, etc. All of her experience comes into play when running the storefront.
What's one of your favorite things about working at Solid?
"I think it's all about the environment. I love working in an atmosphere where you can grow & be innovative."
We're definitely grateful for Jo-Jo and all that she does. If you see here at either location, be sure to stop and say hi!
Here at Solid, we're experiencing a period of growth & change as we prepare to expand to a third location late this year. For a while now, we've felt that it is important to re-evaluate our mission and vision for Solid. As we prepare to enter these new endeavors, we want to make sure we know who we are and what we stand for. This will help steer us as we navigate the months and years ahead.
I joined the Solid team a little over a month ago, and it is definitely clear that this company is driven by its people. The best workplaces after all, at least for me, are the ones that involve face to face interaction with others. As such, one of the best aspects of working in the coffee industry is the opportunity for daily face to face interactions with co-workers and customers.
In our case, the most unique aspect of our company is our roasting operation. We roast our beans in the same space as our main café, so we're a tight nit group. From green coffee beans to final brew, it all happens in the same place. It's a unique experience, and surely one that we strive to keep as an environment of mutual respect and individuality. We believe that each member of our team provides a unique perspective that ultimately drives who we are and how we function as a unit.
As such, we felt that it would be great to highlight the people who make Solid Coffee Roasters function day in and day out. This section of our blog will be dedicated to highlighting a Solid Team Member once a week, so keep checking back for more updates and friendly faces! In the process of getting to know us, we also hope to get to know you!