Who Are You Buying Your Coffee From?

By Ruth Ann Petroff
Who Are You Buying Your Coffee From?
As consumers, we like to know the story behind the brands we buy. As producers, we think it's important that you know who you buy your coffee from, and what it means to us to be able to provide you with delicious organic roasts.

Snake River Roasting Co. opened our doors over ten years ago, roasting organic craft coffees for Wyoming cafes, hotels, restaurants, and homes and is owned by Ruth Ann Petroff. Ruth Ann has been in the hospitality industry her entire adult life, including more than 30 years in Teton County as a small business owner.

Ruth Ann graduated in 1983 from the Laboratory School at University of Northern Colorado as a Preparatory School Graduate and immediately began working for Domino's Pizza Inc. as a driver at first then working her way to becoming an owner. Changing directions in 2003, Ruth Ann opened Hard Drive Cafe. Through attending tradeshows, connecting with other coffee professionals and participating in various trainings, it became clear that this was an opportunity for Ruth Ann to introduce small batch organic craft coffee roasting to Jackson Hole. This eventually led to the creation of Snake River Roasting Co. in 2007. It was here that she established a business that focused on offering quality coffee, exemplary education, and investing in the community.

Ruth Ann served in the Wyoming State Legislature just 50 miles north of Greeley, Colorado where she was born and raised. In the House for three terms, and as chairman of Travel, Recreation, and Wildlife Committee for the last two years, Ruth Ann was a leader on sweeping issues like the Grand Teton National Park land transfer. Her passion while in the legislature was focusing on bills that made small changes in statutes, which then had a dramatic impact on individuals and businesses.

Philanthropy and engaged community involvement have always been the cornerstone of Ruth Ann's personal and professional life in Wyoming. A proud supporter of every nonprofit in Jackson, Wyoming, and the surrounding areas, Ruth Ann makes sure that you can always find in-kind donations from Snake River Roasting Co. at every fundraiser or community event.

One of the benefits of being a woman and an entrepreneur is the opportunity to set the tone in the workplace from company culture to customer service to hiring practices. Ruth Ann has always believed that it is an opportunity to implement changes in areas that have not supported women and marginalized communities in the workplace.

The role of an entrepreneur is to find new ways to do old things. Educating and empowering our staff and customers, creating collaborative communities and networks of support, and always being available to share personal experiences in this industry is something that Ruth Ann strives to do in a consistent and impactful way.

From seed to cup Snake River Roasting Co. takes pride in our roasts at every stage. That is why our all-women coffee roaster partners with Café Femenino – a women-owned and run coffee cooperative and nonprofit that is empowering female farmers in developing countries. As a women-owned business, it is imperative that Snake River Roasting Co. participate in the conversation around equality as well as taking steps to change structures and stigmas that have held women back for too long.

The feedback we receive from customers is that we bring businesses offline and back to Main Street. Through our forward-thinking, sustainable, and regenerative business practices, we highlight the efforts of craft makers and creators from the women farmers who grow our coffee beans to our all-women roasting team. Our wrap-around service model and accountability practices have built a strong and supportive network of small-business owners who know that when one succeeds, we all succeed.

Next month Ruth Ann will bring her newest espresso blend, Wild Iris to the Golden Bean North America competition. If you want to taste this award-winning roast, you can purchase it in our online shop!

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