What roles have you played in past positions to get you to where you are at today? What's your story?
My current role I have played out over the past 25 years or so is that of a serial entrepreneur. I spent twenty years in the ski/sporting goods industry as a sales rep for many globally recognized brands and its thanks in part to that experience that motivated me to start my own brand back in 2008 which I run today called The Grateful Griller. The concept is food entertainment like no one has seen before! I specialize and have become a self confessed expert with an outside Bbq/cooker called a Kamado. I cater and throw down outdoor parties for anywhere from 25-150 at a time and travel with a few thousand pounds of grilling gear and essentially put on a show in various beautiful outdoor settings all over the Provinces of Quebec and Ontario, Canada.
Thanks in most part to my past roles in sales and having been surrounded by many levels of marketing through the years you could say that I never envisioned myself grilling great food for a paying public but that's exactly whats transpired over the last five years while building my brand. In general, I love people and I also love entertaining people on many levels. I feel privileged and humbled to have the opportunity to work with some great companies like Epicurean and sharing my thoughts and product knowledge with my fan base and clients alike. I've come to except the fact that this skill set is simply in my blood!
I feel fortunate to have grown up in one of the most beautiful parts of Eastern Canada just north of Montreal, Quebec in the Laurentian Mountain Range. My Father is a retired chef and worked in various levels of food services his entire life. My Mother was a nurse and translator and I have one brother. Today, I live with my wife Eva and only child, Delilah not far from where it all began as a kid for me. I spent the better part of a decade as a junior national level cyclist and skier and I think a lot of my drive and motivation comes from this aspect of my past life. Today, if I'm not throwing a party somewhere you can find me either riding long miles on the bike or searching for the perfect turn in deep powder.
What has been your inspiration?
My inspiration has been my family and my closest friends without a doubt. They have supported me from day one on any adventure I have set my mind to and I think its a big reason that my business card today says Food, Family, Friends and Music!
Where did you go to school?
The majority of my schooling took place in the Province of Ontario, Canada in the eastern part of our country. I finished High School and went onto post secondary studies at Seneca College, Ontario, Canada where I graduated with an outdoor recreation diploma. Arts and athletics were always at the top of mind for this griller apart from skipping the odd day or so for snow days!
What do you have cookin up? Industry plans, next steps, personal goals
I will continue to develop The Grateful Griller Party Experience in order to provide a totally unique and some what avant-garde option for my clients who are searching out a concept like this to celebrate that special occasion in their lives. The Kamado cooker has literally turned into a conduit for me and through it's unique and ancient story I hope to continue spreading the message about its magic and become a key influencer here in Canada first and then move forward from here into other countries around the world. This year will also see me writing even more content and developing my blog and with my small team starting to hone my skill at video production in order to get my message and my affiliated partners messages out there!
A dream goal would be to venture into television and documentary film production one day and shoot a movie tracing the Kamado cookers long journey into the spotlight of niche charcoal fired cookers that they are today. Time will tell but as long as I can continue inspiring people on the "grilled to obsession" lifestyle I will always be able to continue feeding life's fires!
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