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Triple Wren Farms began in 2012 as a cut flower farm; Sarah and Steve grew florist favorites and trucked them up and down I-5 until the day of a certain King County wedding, brake lights, and a broken iPhone. Over the decade, they've pivoted, grown, shrunk and adjusted until reaching the current iteration: retail dahlia tuber sales. Today, the 20-a…
 
Brothers Chay Tan and Lee Tan purchased Coconut Kenny's back in 2004. Chay tells the stories of the early days - purchasing on an owner contract, slinging real estate to pay the bills, and stretching every marketing dollar. Now, the family-owned chain has 7 stores in 3 counties and has opened up co-ownership opportunities to their employees and man…
 
Greg Klassen's woodworking journey began as a newlywed making furniture out of door scraps. Later he would design the original River® table - live edge wood with blue glass. Greg's distinctive style, his grit in going to show after show after show with little results, and his willingness to learn marketing and write an infinity of press releases an…
 
Stemma Brewing Co began as a business plan while owner Jason Harper was a student at WWU. He got an inside look at the industry while working for a local distribution company and completed multiple levels of the Cicerone certification. In this episode, he and Leo talk about the importance of both subject matter education and business savvy, how co-…
 
AB Crepes just celebrated its 10 year anniversary, and to kick off Season 4 we sat down with owner Bayly Peterson. We talk late-night party vibes, negative Yelp reviews, and the sheer grit and work it took to run a new business while a full-time student. This year, Bayly and his business partner opened Otherside Bagel Co. Taking the lessons of AB C…
 
In this episode, we sat down with Ari and Paul to taste chocolate and talk about their journey: from squinting at chocolate bars in a grocery store, to landing 500 retail stores on the West Coast, to expanding into back-end manufacturing (and the ramifications of the new chocolate chip machine). Paul and Ari shared insights into the direct trade ch…
 
In this episode, Tony tells the story of his relentless desire to create. From scaling up (and back down again) Moceri Construction, to freelance writing for local publications, to promoting small yard games on social media, he brings energy and drive to a situation. Leo and Tony dig into real estate investing, mindset, and the importance of kindne…
 
Widnor Farms offers beef, chicken, lamb and pork along with other farm goods. In this episode, Brianna tells us about the process of transforming a rundown farmhouse into a home, and arid land into pasture that feeds their rotating herds of cows, pigs, lambs and chickens. Throughout the story, she talks about the challenge farmers have finding proc…
 
Bob Kramer forges some of the most sought-after kitchen knives in the world, and he has been featured in articles by the New York Times, Saveur, and Wall Street Journal. In this episode, Bob tells the story of a young man flying to six cities seeking the secret to knife sharpening, opening a storefront in the heart of Seattle, stacking up a two-yea…
 
Well friends, it's been 2.5 years, 19 feature-length episodes and 45 livestreams since the Building Bellingham Podcast began. And so for our 20th show, Leo and Tiffany take a deep-dive into the creation and growth of the show, and the challenges and mindset shifts they've had along the way. They talk branding, leaning down and livestreaming during …
 
Storia Cucina means "kitchen history" in Italian. This popular downtown Bellingham restaurant is the brainchild of Chef Jonathan Cicotti, formerly a restauranteur in San Francisco. The restaurant opened in May 2020 and quickly became a Bellingham favorite, thanks to delicious recipes from Jonathan's Italian heritage and the his commitment to sourci…
 
Kelsey’s entrepreneurial journey began at the young age of 11 with her Grandpa Paul, who taught her the secrets about connecting first, and selling second. Today, she’s built her business around that concept as a branding educator and photographer. Known for her big personality, bold colors, and wearing a jumpsuit to photoshoots, Kelsey is an unapo…
 
When you think of Hardware Sales, you're probably thinking of the place you go when you need nuts and bolts, or to rent a power washer (and you'd be right). But did you know about the 56,000 sq ft warehouse in Indiana? Or the consulting work they do for Amazon sellers in their industry? Or how one idea from an employee saved 132 hours of labor per …
 
Season 3 is just around the corner, but before that, here are some thoughts from Leo! Building Bellingham's host reflects on the last two years of conversations with local entrepreneurs. He also goes into why the topic of failure comes up in every interview. Website: https://livebellinghamnow.com/building_bellingham Facebook: https://www.facebook.c…
 
Frank Muljat founded the Muljat Group Realtors, a brokerage that now has multiple offices in our county, and has become a widely-recognized name. In 2017, Frank Muljat sold the business to his son, Troy Muljat, himself known for his 30 years of commercial appraising and investment experience. Troy is a trusted housing market data source, regularly …
 
Brothers Ryan & BJ Flood took over the brewery and offsite tap-room in 2019. Menace Brewing in the Fountain District has played host to trivia nights, open mic, and movie showings. The Local is nestled between Casa Que Pasa and Cafe Adagio on Railroad, and has 36 rotating taps, showcasing independent local breweries. They’re also known for having t…
 
Gretchen was drawn to Bellingham by the outdoor lifestyle - snowboarding, mountain biking and sea kayaking. These Pacific NW elements, along with bright colors, crisp lines, and large-scale design, make up her signature style. Her work can be found on the walls of local breweries and climbing gyms, to the sides of buildings in Bellingham, Seattle a…
 
Brist Mfg began as a clothing line popular in the WWU student bookstore. The company now manufactures private label hats, t-shirts, flannels and beanies, offers screenprinting & design, AND provides e-commerce and web store management and fulfillment services. Today, their nationwide client list includes Sundance Film Festival, SXSW, the Seattle Ma…
 
Greenhouse began in 1972 and Eric & BreAnne Green purchased the business in 2017. Bre manages the store and is the primary buyer, hand-selecting high-end, premium pieces of home decor, housewares, and furniture. Greenhouse pairs nicely with their real estate business, as they stage homes or work with buyers on making their new house a home. With th…
 
A brewer, a beertender and a business man walked into a bar...Aslan Brewing Co began in 2012 as a team of three friends. They brewed over 130 pilot batches and determined the core values that guide every development in their company: the Triple Bottom Line model, which places People and the Planet prior to Profits. Two years later, after an extensi…
 
Erin Baker’s all began in a 4-H kitchen at the Whidbey Island Fairgrounds in 1994, when the concept of a nutritionally dense ‘breakfast cookie’ was a brand new concept. In the early years, Erin made deliveries on a blue Schwinn bicycle, but today, Erin Baker’s Wholesome Baked Goods can be found in grocery stores in 17 states and also purchased at e…
 
Faithlife all began as a software side project for a Microsoft developer, and the first copies of Logos 1 were shipped from Bob’s parents’ kitchen table. Today, 28 years later, the software giant has tools available for over 3 billion people worldwide to study theology in their first language. In this episode, Bob talks about Thomas Edison's mining…
 
Ben Kinney is a giant in the real estate industry, the owner of the Bellingham-based sales team that consistently is one of the top teams in the Keller Williams' US brokerages. Ben himself owns multiple brokerage franchises in the US and London, along with BRIVITY, BKCO Mortage, Place Inc and other companies ancillary to the real estate world. But …
 
In this interview, we dive into culture, brand, and the PNW roots that created an environment for Woods Coffee to be successful. Wes goes deep into what it takes to make a business work. Planning for the ramp-up time, having enough capital to prepare for one or even two years before the business becomes profitable, and sacrificing to make it work. …
 
Our guest today is Ray Deck III, a high-octane human, Founding Director of Skookum Kids, and the Bellingham Chamber of Commerce CEO of the Year 2019. Throughout our conversation, Ray shares insights into what makes him a strong leader: taking natural talent and purposefully developing leadership as a skill, planning, preparing and surrounding himse…
 
Bramble Berry CEO Anne-Marie Faiola, aka The Soap Queen, tells the story of how she built her soapmaking business, from selling in farmer's markets, to getting a master's degree in her field plus an MBA, to developing a huge Instagram following and creating professional how-to videos that get thousands of views. Today she gives us a window into her…
 
Ziad Youssef, local lawyer and legal care advocate, sat down with Leo to talk about how he’s made a practice of noticing problems and intervening in them, how he earned success through service, and how he’s initiating systemic change in our community. Today, Ziad is working with cutting-edge legal technology that could cut down attorney time (and t…
 
Dylan Langei, a local loan officer, sat down with Leo to talk about how he graduated with an MBA and nowhere to go, how he competed with longstanding veterans in the business, how the lessons of team sports inform his business today, and how we can face our fears through purposeful preparation. His story is especially inspiring for the young busine…
 
Heather Simpson, longtime real estate agent and more recently, founder & director of She Leads Me, joins Leo to discuss her journey from living life on autopilot, to seizing each opportunity to live with intention. We were inspired by the raw and real story of how she has developed moxie - force of character - through severe lows in her personal an…
 
Jesse Nelson, co-founder and CEO of Overflow Taps, joins Leo to discuss his journey from hearing no to saying yes. He tells the story of opening two taphouses in Whatcom County, and the training process, recharging strategies, and strict Monday routine that he’s developed along the way. This debut episode is a must-listen for aspiring leaders. Whil…
 
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