SCAA Board of Directors Approves Slate of Candidates for 2012 Election

The SCAA Board of Directors has approved a slate of candidates as recommended by the Nominating Committee for the 2012 Board of Directors Elections. The names below are the nominees for the positions listed:

2nd Vice President

Shawn Hamilton, Java City | Shawn Hamilton is the Vice-President of Operations and Coffee Buyer for Java City, located in Sacramento, California. Since 1985, Java City has pioneered initiatives designed to enhance the global village, support the communities and protect the environment. Shawn has been involved in the Specialty Coffee industry since 1987. During his tenure he has worked in almost every facet of the industry from Barista, packaging, roasting, quality control, coffee buying, purchasing, futures and options hedging to executive management. He was instrumental in several mergers and acquisitions within the industry. His experience also includes a proven dedication to the industry and volunteering. Shawn has been a volunteer in Colombia to teach and evaluate cuppers for Coffee Corps, participates as a lead judge in the annual Cupping for Quality for the Rainforest Alliance, and has been a judge for Cup of Excellence. In addition, he is one of the founding members of the Roasters Guild and served for six years on the Executive Council. While on the Executive Council, Shawn served as Chairman and was instrumental in the creation of the overall structure of the Guild. He has also served on the Board of the Pacific Coast Coffee Association. Currently he sits on the board for World Coffee Research and is the Secretary/ Treasurer for the SCAA.


Ben Pitts, Royal Cup Coffee | Ben Pitts is Vice President of FoodService & Hospitality at Royal Cup Coffee, a premium and specialty roaster serving all segments of the out of home coffee market. In addition to its Royal Cup branded coffees, the firm has launched luxury coffee brand and artisan roastery, H.C. Valentine. Ben joined Royal Cup in 1988 and has served as an Executive Officer since 1998. Current responsibilities include management of 8 Regions overseeing sales, service, and all field operations of Royal Cup’s FoodService Division. Ben also manages the Field Training Department. From an industry and professional perspective, Ben and fellow Royal Cuppers have been active through the years in various SCAA training and sponsorship endeavors. Ben is currently on the board of World Coffee Research (formerly GCQRI) helping launch collaborative coffee research initiatives. Coffee Certifications include the SCAA Golden Cup, Espresso Italiano Taster (Assaggiatore), and service as a Cup of Excellence judge (Best of Panama). Ben serves on the board of the Culinard (culinary) Institute and is an active supporter of the James Beard Foundation and the Southern Foodways Alliance. Service to his community includes United Way of Central Alabama cabinet member, Camp Fire USA current board president, and Rotary Club of Birmingham member.

(3 open seats)

Willem Boot, Boot Coffee Consulting | Willem Boot founded Boot Coffee Consulting in 1999 with the basic goal to improve quality throughout the coffee industry. He roasted his first batch of coffee at the age of 14 and obtained a masters-degree in business economics at the University of Amsterdam. During the 1990’s Willem was co-owner of his family’s coffee company “The Golden Coffee Box”. As a consultant, Willem has been managing quality improvement programs in countries like Colombia, Panama and Honduras. As a marketing strategist, he has been working on extensive programs for coffee industries in Ethiopia and El Salvador. He has been a lead trainer for the “Q” program and a head judge at many international coffee events. Over the years, hundreds of industry professionals have traveled to his coffee studio in Mill Valley, CA to attend roast profiling or cupping courses. Every year Willem donates at least one month of his time to non-profit causes. In 2006, a long time dream was realized. He planted the first Geisha tree at his cloudforest coffee farm “La Mula” in Panama; the first micro-crop is expected in 2011!

Carolyn Fairman, Coffee Kids | Carolyn Fairman, executive director of Coffee Kids, has been working in the coffee industry for 11 years. In her time with Coffee Kids she has helped create highly successful development programs in economic diversification, healthcare & nutrition, education, food security and capacity building in numerous coffee-farming communities in Latin America. Carolyn is also a member of the SCAA Sustainability Council. She received her master’s in Latin American Studies from the University of New Mexico, where she focused on political science and gender. Prior to Coffee Kids, Fairman worked with a non-governmental organization in Guatemala helping returning refugees after the country’s civil war.

Chad Trewick, Caribou Coffee Company | Chad Trewick joined Caribou Coffee in July of 1993 as a barista and within three months he had climbed the ranks to become a store manager. Shortly thereafter, when Caribou started to roast coffee, he was drawn closer to the bean and pursued a career as a roaster for four years in Caribou’s production facility. While fine-tuning his skills in the roastery, Chad began to travel to various Caribou markets to spread coffee knowledge to stores. In 1998, Chad took over as the green coffee buyer at Caribou. Encouraging farmers to engage in Rainforest Alliance certification and strengthening the supply chain through relationships at origin, he has been improving Caribou’s coffee quality and spreading the word ever since. Today, with more focus on origin conditions and sustainability than on buying, Chad scours the globe in search of the world’s finest coffees working to ensure mutually beneficial relationships at source where positive impacts can be made–he can rarely be found at his desk, instead opting for the tropical climes in emerging countries where coffee is grown. Understanding the chain of custody and the social and environmental conditions that result in coffee deliveries to Caribou Coffee Company is one of his top priorities. Chad strongly believes that the notions of sustainability and responsible capitalism gaining in notoriety today must continue to move from the sometimes-alienating fringe to the broader mainstream in order for us all to leave a positive, widespread, and lasting legacy through our work. In addition to his origin work he leads a team at Caribou whose charge is to minimize the environmental impact of the business through recycling efforts, waste reduction, and greater responsibility overall. Chad serves on the SCAA Sustainability Council and is committed to teaching people about his passions: coffee, preserving the planet’s people and places, and sustainability!

Election Timeline

Petitions to be added to the ballot are now being accepted. Deadline for petitions to be added to ballot is January 1, 2012. See section 11 (d) of the SCAA Bylaws for more information on the petition process. Email with any questions or instructions on how to submit a petition.

Ballots are distributed for official SCAA Board of Directors election on February 29, 2012.

Deadline for voting in official Board of Directors election is March 31, 2012.

The election is certified and results are announced in April 2012.