Abbey Duke, Owner, Sugarsnap
My indirect career path led me through field biology, journalism and a little marketing before deciding to pursue my dream: run a farm business that sells its end product. In December of 2003, I opened Sugarsnap with a small farm in the Intervale and a take-out cafe. From about 1,000 square feet, we cooked and sold fresh take-out meals and started doing some catering. Over the past 16 years, I have taken Sugarsnap from that small storefront to become the largest off-premise caterer in the Burlington area. I led the move (and financing) to a 5,000 square foot space and the addition of 2 more cafes. I also led the change of the business model to a complete focus on catering. My experience has led me to a deep understanding of the value of persistence, teamwork, strategic focus and cashflow.