Employee Newsletter 6/19/2023

CoCo Reflections from Garrett McGowan:

This Week’s CoCo: Be Urgent to the Customer

For a little over two years after being married, Lauren and I lived together in a studio apartment in Downtown Los Angeles. I worked long hours at a financial firm, and she worked nights and weekends at the hospital. We have many fond memories of that time, but down-time together was both scarce and precious in that season of life. 

One fateful Saturday, the stars aligned, and we had an entire day to spend together free of any obligations. Lauren, wanting to be a responsible adult, mentioned that we had gone too long without a visit to the dentist and that we should put the free time to good use. I begrudgingly agreed but requested that she book something close by so that we didn’t waste our entire day enduring traffic. She obliged and quickly booked a location in the city that was a 20-minute walk from our apartment.

The day of the appointment arrived. We exited our apartment, and I pulled up the office on my phone. “This is a strange location,” I said as we began walking. We made our way into a quiet, gritty, industrial part of the city. We arrived at our destination, which looked like a big factory building. A single metal door stood before us with a small plaque indicating that it was a dentist’s office. We opened the door and made our way up a long-carpeted staircase into a silent, non-descript waiting room. “Where did you find this place?” I asked. I pulled up the location and, in a city of millions, the office had only a handful of generically worded reviews. I was about to say that we should leave when a receptionist came out saying the dentist was ready right away. Lauren and I looked at each other and nodded – even if we made it out with a few less organs, we weren’t going to waste our day.

The dentist sat both of us in separate rooms and began the routine teeth cleaning. There were no assistants and rather than attending to one patient before moving to another, it was clear that he was running between rooms to perform on us like some kind of human-mouth Ford factory line. The dentist was in Lauren’s room when I heard him say, “One moment, I have to go grab a package.” At this point, he completely left the building. We sat in silence for what had to be 10 minutes. The only sound that could be heard was our stifled laughing between rooms. 

He eventually returned, finished the cleaning, and to our surprise we left the office whole and intact. On our walk home, we were commiserating on how bizarre our experience was. I told her that I couldn’t believe he left the building while we sat in the operation chairs. “You know what’s even worse?” Lauren asked. “He left the suction device in my mouth the entire time.”

Being urgent to the customer requires prioritization and intentionality. This urgency does not necessitate toxic mindsets like ‘the customer is always right.’ Rather, it simply asks that we provide our full attention and effort to deliver on the customer experience. We can’t always control external factors and sometimes we will be limited in our ability to deliver, but we should always maintain the internal urgency to others. We should never give in to apathy. We should never leave the building with medical devices in the mouths of our customers.

Next Week’s CoCo: Never Stop Learning

In the final weeks of 2017, Lauren and I embarked on a move from Southern California to Wisconsin. Through a set of extraordinary circumstances, my best pal and now brother-in-law (a separate story), Lucas, made the move with us. We agreed to split a U-Haul and to share the cost. Later, we found out that Lucas had a storage unit full of family heirlooms and so we had no other option than to go all in. A group of individuals, softened by the Southern California lifestyle, committed to driving a 26-foot U-Haul across the country and into the Midwest during the dead of winter. And, to our credit, we made the journey with relative ease.

On the third and final day of the trip, we crossed the border into Wisconsin. The snow was falling, holiday music was playing, and we were in top tier spirits. The whole extended family was gathered and waiting for us at Lauren’s uncle’s house about 40 minutes west of Milwaukee. The sun had set, the festive lights were on, and a thin sheet of snow covered the ground. We turned into the neighborhood and began cheering and high fiving. We had made it successfully: the journey was over. 

We pulled up to the house. Lauren’s uncle was at the end of the long driveway waiving us in. Lucas swiftly turned the U-Haul into the driveway but, due to the snow coverage, he did not see that on either side of the narrow driveway was a 3-foot drainage ditch. The two left wheels of the U-Haul hit the driveway and the two right wheels sunk into the ditch. We bounced over the incline and for a good 5 seconds we were wobbling down the driveway on two wheels. There was complete silence: we had journeyed over 2,000 miles safely only to crash on burn in the last 15 feet.

Luckily, the car slammed down on all four wheels, and we skidded to a stop at the end of the driveway. We exhaled a collective sigh of relief. Lucas, wanting to salvage his first impression, confidently strutted out of the U-Haul and up to Lauren’s uncle for a firm handshake. But, in his flustered state of mind, he did so without putting the vehicle into park. I sat in the passenger seat, wide eyed and paralyzed by shock, as our 26-foot U-Haul began rolling across the backyard. To Lucas’ credit, he athletically ran back, dove into the cab, and stopped the vehicle. The only damage done that evening was to Lucas’ ego. It was the great premature celebration of 2017.

Until we draw our last breath, our journey is never complete. We may hit milestones throughout our lives that can and should be celebrated, but the motto Never Stop Learning is a reminder that we have perpetual opportunities to live more and to live better. A fulfilled life is a life full of curiosity. It’s a life of exploring the unfamiliar, embracing experiences, and expanding one’s knowledge. It’s a life surrounded by others that share a similar passion and hunger for life. So read that book, say yes to the experience that tests your abilities, and agree to write company-wide reflections despite it feeling uncomfortable. If we are learning, we are growing. When we choose to be stagnant, we atrophy. I strive to live in a way where I can admit my limits, but I choose to not always accept them – I want to be pushing forward with my hands on the wheel, not aimlessly rolling into a backyard.

CoCo Heroes:

  • Be Urgent to the Customer: This Core Commitment Hero comes from the Bakery Team – The Bake-Off crew – Jay, Atlas, Corina, Eric, and Noel! This crew beautifully proofs, fills, bakes, tops and packs all of our bakery in time for our amazing delivery crew to come get it by 5pm each day. Not only do they create remarkable food, but they crush the time it takes to get it ready for delivery and our customers in cafe! Thanks to these folks for their dedication to our customers.
  • Never Stop Learning: This Core Commitment Hero comes from the Factory Cafe Team – Austin Grandlich! Austin may be new to coffee, but he definitely is not new to learning. Austin has taken the time since starting with us in January to not only accomplish his scholar barista certification, but also Cafe Coach Training on top of that. The team adores Austin’s commitment to learning and growing at Stone Creek Coffee, and we are so excited to have him a part of the Factory Cafe Team! 


  • Employee Satisfaction Survey: As you know, one of the most important things at Stone Creek Coffee is you! We care about you and the experiences that you have working here. To continue to never stop learning about areas in which we are excelling and areas that we can improve, we are conducting a super short employee survey. Your experience at Stone Creek Coffee is important to us, and this survey is another opportunity to share your thoughts. Click here to #SpeakUp and share your feedback by the end of the day on Friday, June 23rd.  
  • Join the Whitefish Bay Opening Team: We are so excited for the opportunity to Create Remarkable Care in a new Whitefish Bay Cafe & Kitchen, with a target opening date this summer! We are in the early stages of building a team of Baristas, Line Cooks, and Cafe & Kitchen Team Leaders. If you are interested in joining the Whitefish Bay opening team, either as a permanent transfer or a temporary transfer, reach out to teams@stonecreekcoffee.com!
  • 6/22 TNT: Join us on June 22nd for our next Thursday Night Throwdown! This time around it is Jazz Night themed so come in some comfortable jazz club attire and be ready for a relaxing night of competition and fun! There will be two brackets, a beginner’s bracket, and an experienced bracket, food, and more! We’ll be giving away prizes for all competitive aspects of the TNT. All team members from all teams are invited. Please note that anyone who has been a barista for less than a year qualifies for the beginner’s bracket. See you there!
  • SCC Transportation Grant Coming Up: Hey Coffee Geeks! In striving to be equitable, inclusive, and environmentally conscious, SCC offers a transportation grant opportunity to a handful of team members each quarter. This grant is awarded based on need. Team members who receive this grant will receive a monthly reimbursement towards a bus pass, bike, etc. If your primary method of transportation to work is something other than a personal vehicle and you are interested in participating, please email teams@stonecreekcoffee.com to request an application. All current and previous recipients should reach out to Teams to request a new application to reapply for the upcoming quarter. We will be accepting applications Monday, April 3rd through the end of the day Monday, July 10th, 2023. Q3 grant recipients will be selected by the end of the day on Monday, July 17th. Please see the 2023 Employee Handbook for additional details.
  • Brewing Change Project – Guest House: Stone Creek Coffee is thrilled to be partnering with Guest House of Milwaukee for another volunteer opportunity. Located on North 13th Street between Juneau and McKinley Avenues in the King Park neighborhood. To learn more about Guest House of Milwaukee check out their website. We are looking for up to 10 coffee geeks to join Factory barista, Radar and Cafe Coach, Austin in creating sandwiches for Guest House on July 20th, from 1pm-2:30pm at Guest House. Guest House provides approximately 200-400 sandwiches daily to shelter guests and to those in need in our community. The goal is to have sandwiches available to all those in need each day of the year. Take a moment to let us know and sign up here by Friday, June 30th!
  • July 19th Professional Development Opportunity: We are thrilled to share another SCC Professional Development workshop with our teams! On Wednesday, July 19th, SCC team members are eligible to participate in Building and Maintaining Professional Relationships. This class focuses on the value and impact of building authentic connections in a professional environment with an emphasis on communication strategies, goal alignment, and strategic partnerships in the workplace. Together, we’ll build up our toolkit with strategies for successful interactions with team members, team leaders, and other folks we’re likely to encounter on our professional path (such as prospective employers, would-be coworkers, and vendors). Part-Time and Full-Time team members are invited to use their Paid Professional Development Time to attend from 3-6pm in the Factory Meeting Room on Wednesday 7/19. Click here to sign up for our July Professional Development opportunity. See you there!
  • October 21st MKE Barista League: The Barista League holds unique coffee competitions all over the world, and this fall they’re coming to Milwaukee! Interested team members can choose to compete (free – compete in pairs; competitors are limited so sign up early!), volunteer (eligible for paid volunteer time), or just attend the event (tickets available for purchase). While SCC is not formally involved in the event, we are a community of #CoffeeGeeks and wanted to share this info with you! For more info, as well as competitor applications, volunteer applications, and ticket pricing, check out their website

Wins & Shout-outs:

John Harvey – Tech
Thank you for showing remarkable care and taking care of your coworkers at the many SCC locations. Keep up the crushery!

Anthony Moroder – Harwood
Anthony, thank you for preparing a bunch of 5lb bags for the most recent 5lb sale. It’s super helpful heading into a sale like that (during a holiday) knowing everything is already prepped and ready to go.  #takecareofyourcoworkers

Ali Nofrey – Harwood
Ali regularly thinks through what could be improved at the cafe and helps think through solutions. Most recently Ali reorganized our label bin with new folders and labels. She also thought through how to deal with a leaking Fetco while still serving coffee. Way to think hard Ali!

If you’d like to recognize or celebrate a teammate, we would love to hear about it! By clicking here, you can fill out a form to nominate a hero and choose how you would like them to be celebrated.


  • 6/19 – Angeline Garvey
  • 6/25 – Rachel Shea
  • 6/26 – Litzel Saavedra
  • 7/2 – Mara Rugen
  • 7/3 – Matthew Wilkins
  • 7/6 – Hailey Barsch
  • 7/6 – William Thiemann
  • 7/7 – Jenna Knapp
  • 7/7 – Olivia O’Neill
  • 7/11 – Margaret Bigler
  • 7/11 – Bryan Bach
  • 7/15 – Selina Domenech
  • 7/21 – Meghan Gross
  • 7/24 – Arcadia Schmid
  • 7/29 – Olivia Aponte
  • 7/30 – Amy Balestrieri


  • Patricia Kovochich – 6 years!
  • Brian Koznarek – 2 years!
  • Bryan Kraft – 16 years!!!
  • Andy Kubash – 2 years!
  • Molly Persin – 2 years!
  • Marie Redding – 2 years!
  • Domenic Serena – 2 years!
  • Mitch Stewart – 3 years!
  • Karen Strange – 7 years!
  • Margaret Tews – 4 years!
  • Johnny Zei – 1 year!


  • Adam Sack – Baker
  • Josephine Bieker – Baker
  • Yesenia Perez-Valazquez – Baker
  • Rehaan Machhi – Harwood
  • Dulce Garcia Perez- Glendale (Welcome back!)

Employee Discount Codes:
Please don’t share these with non-employees

  • 20% Employee-Only Website Coupon Code
    • June: Jun2023sccemp
    • July: Jul2023sccemp
  • 40% Employee-Only Mobile App Coupon Code
    • June: Jun2023sccemp
    • July: Jul2023sccemp

Catch up on all of our newsletters, company updates, recipes, and more in our Employee Blog here.

Ways to Speak Up:

Do you want to speak up about ideas, thoughts, and more? Send an email to Teams & People (teams@stonecreekcoffee.com) or use the button below to send a note anonymously.

At Stone Creek Coffee, social responsibility is a foundational element of our identity. We believe that a commitment to the environment must coexist with other elements of social responsibility for a holistic approach to doing our best for the world and others.

Stone Creek Coffee will regularly audit and identify areas of environmental strength and weakness within the overall operations of the organization.  We will attempt to reduce any negative impacts to air, surface water, ground water, public health, community quality of life, and employee health while producing coffee that is sweet, clean, and juicy. Stone Creek Coffee will strive for continual improvement in pollution prevention while meeting or exceeding all regulations.

Eric Resch, Managing Director
As a mission-driven company, at Stone Creek Coffee, we believe in serving and enhancing the local communities we live and work in.

We believe that the socially responsible practices we apply daily in our internal operations can proliferate with the involvement of our stakeholders, customers, and our communities. In each community where our employees work and live, we — as Stone Creek Coffee and individual members of the community — actively create opportunities to play a positive role through various initiatives. These initiatives include support of important charitable organizations through monetary and/or material donations, promoting volunteerism, and more.

In line with our mission to be socially responsible, we also commit to the following: 

Serving Local Customers
  • We commit to serve at least 75% local and independent clients or customers. 
  • Local Hiring - As a company that is committed to its local community, at Stone Creek Coffee, we are also committed to local hiring.
  • Local Suppliers - We are committed to using local suppliers when possible.

Eric Resch, Managing Director

At Stone Creek Coffee, social responsibility is a foundational aspect of our identity. As such, we expect our partners and suppliers to conduct themselves and their business in an ethical, legal, and socially responsible manner including, but not limited to, their commitment to the environment, their employees, and the community. 

Legal Requirements

We expect that all suppliers know and follow the laws that apply to them and their business, as well as to treat the law as the minimum standard. 

Ethical Requirements - Integrity

At Stone Creek Coffee, we believe in conducting business with integrity and as a force for good. We expect our suppliers to operate fairly and ethically. Bribes, kickbacks, inappropriate gifts or hospitality, or other improper incentives in connection with Stone Creek Coffee are not tolerated. Suppliers are expected to avoid any conflict of interest relating to financial interests or other arrangements with our employees that may be considered inappropriate, and are to work with their own suppliers to promote business conduct consistent with the principles in this Code.

Labor Requirements 

Child Labor and Slavery - We do not tolerate child labor or slavery in our supply chain. Consistent with the United Nations Global compact principles, suppliers should avoid any sort of child labor in the business operations. 

Identification of Concerns - Suppliers are required to provide means for their employees to report concerns or potentially unlawful activities in the workplace. Any report should be treated in a confidential manner. Suppliers will investigate such reports and take corrective action if needed.

Wages and Working Conditions

Working Hours, Wages and Benefits - Working hours for suppliers’ employees will not exceed the maximum set by the applicable national law. Compensation paid to employees will comply with applicable national wage laws and ensure an adequate standard of living. Suppliers are expected to provide their employees with fair and competitive compensation and benefits. Compensation and benefits should aim at providing an adequate standard of living for employees and their families. Suppliers’ employees will be paid in a timely manner. It is recommended that suppliers offer their employees ample training and educational opportunities.

Diversity and Inclusion - Fair and equal treatment of all employees is expected to be a fundamental principle of all of our supplier’s corporate policies. Typical discriminatory treatment takes into consideration – consciously or unconsciously – irrelevant characteristics of an employee such as race, national origin, gender, age, physical characteristics, social origin, disability, religion, family status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression or any unlawful criterion under applicable law. Suppliers will ensure that their employees are not harassed in any way. Stone Creek Coffee encourages its suppliers to provide an inclusive and supportive working environment while exercising diversity when it comes to their employees as well as in their decisions to select subcontractors.

Health, Safety, Quality, and Security

Health and Safety - In order to provide dignity and respect, we expect all of our suppliers to protect workers’ rights and provide safe and healthy working conditions. We encourage our supplier partners to foster an environment that is inclusive, and free of harassment and discrimination. 

Emergency Preparedness, Risk Information, and Training - Suppliers will make available safety information on identified workplace risks and suppliers’ employees will be correspondingly trained to ensure they are adequately protected. Suppliers will identify and assess likely and potential emergency situations in the workplace and minimize their impact by implementing emergency plans and response procedures.

Quality and Security - Suppliers are expected to have good security practices across their supply chains. Suppliers will maintain processes and standards that are designed to assure the integrity of each shipment to Stone Creek Coffee from its origin through to its destination and all points in between. Suppliers are expected to implement the necessary and appropriate measures in their area of responsibility to ensure that Stone Creek Coffee products, their workable components or raw materials as well as the corresponding know-how do not end up in the hands of counterfeiters or third parties and do not leave the legal supply chain.

Environmental Awareness 

Waste and Emissions - Suppliers will have systems in place to ensure the safe handling, movement, storage, recycling, reuse and management of waste, air emissions and wastewater discharges. Any of these activities that have the potential to adversely impact human or environmental health will be appropriately managed, measured, controlled and handled prior to release of any substance into the environment. Suppliers will have systems in place to prevent or mitigate accidental spills and releases into the environment.

Resource Conservation and Climate Protection - Suppliers are expected to use natural resources (e.g. water, sources of energy, raw materials) n an economical way. Negative impacts on the environment and climate will be minimized or eliminated at their source or by practices such as the modification of production, maintenance and facility processes, material substitution, conservation, recycling and material reutilization. Suppliers will engage in the development and use of climate-friendly products and processes to reduce power consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.

Preference to Purchase from Local Suppliers and Suppliers with Ownership from Underrepresented Populations - At Stone Creek Coffee, we are committed to our community and the environment. As such, we have a preference to purchase from local suppliers when possible, as well as to purchase from suppliers who support other local suppliers. We also give preferences to suppliers with ownership from underrepresented populations.

Supplier Audits and Record Keeping - In order to make responsible, well-informed business decisions and disclose truthful and timely information to our stakeholders, we expect our supplier partners to maintain accurate and honest records.  In line with this, we expect our supplier partners to do the following: maintain books and records that reflect all transactions in an accurate, honest, and timely way; employ appropriate quality audit and compliance processes for matters such as product and food safety, worker health and safety, and labor and employment; to enable traceability, disclose the location of facilities and known origins of materials upon request/audit.

When screening potential suppliers, we screen for the following:
  1. Compliance with all local laws and regulations, including those related to social and environmental performance
  2. Good governance, including policies related to ethics and corruption, as well as diversity and inclusion
  3. Positive practices beyond what is required by regulations (e.g. environmentally-friendly manufacturing process, excellent labor practices, performance to the Core Commitments, etc.)
  4. Third-party certifications related to positive social and/or environmental performance (B Corp certification, Bird Friendly, etc.)
  5. Local suppliers should be given preference (within 250 miles of Factory)
  6. Suppliers owned by underrepresented populations should be given preference

Jessica Sheridan, Director of Coffee 

Ally Coffee
Alto Cold Brew
Amazon Business
American Solutions for Business
Atlas Coffee
AUI Fine Foods
Badger Distributing of Milwaukee LLC
Bodum USA
Boelter Companies
Britevision Media
Cafe Imports
Caravela Coffee
Carmo Coffee
Champaign Coffee Company
Chemex Corporation
Clover Distribution
Complete Office of WIsconsin
Component Design
DWC Specialties
Economy Lamp Co
Englehardt Dairy
Espresso Parts
Evolve Snacking
Exclusive Coffees
Flair Flexible Packaging Corp
Genuine Origin Coffee
Good Land Supply Co
Gordon Food Service
Gravity Marketing
Great American Spice Company
Greco & Sons
Green Bay Packaging
Halo Soap LLC
InterAmerican Coffee
Kallas Honey Farm
La Marzocco USA
Long Miles Coffee Int Ltd
Magellan Promotions, LLC
Marich Confectionery
Meadowlark Organics
Milwaukee Candle Company
Natures Flavors
NKG (Neumann Kaffee Gruppe)
Occhetti Foods
Olam Specialty Coffee
Omanhene Cocoa Bean Co.
Online Labels
Orchard Street Press
PBFY Flexible Packaging
Plant Guru
Polaris Specialty Coffee
Premium Water
Rishi Tea
Royal Coffee
San Miguel Single Origin Coffees (Green Power Trade Inc.)
Sassy Cow Creamery
Shared Source Coffee
Sleeve A Message
Spice House
Sysco East Wisconsin
Tapped Maple Syrup
Terra Spice
The Chai Company
The Chef's Warehouse
Tony Machi Fruits & Vegetables
V. Marchese
Valley Bakers
Fiscal Year 2020
  Benefit Director - Eric Resch

Owners (owning >= 5% of the shares of the benefit corporation): Melissa Perez, Eric Resch

Letter from Benefit Director

Social obligation is a founding principle of Stone Creek Coffee and acts as an ethos for our business. With this obligation comes responsibilities and commitments. At Stone Creek Coffee, we are committed to keeping those commitments. In line with this, this past year, we became a benefit corporation with the state of Wisconsin by amending our articles of incorporation in order to further promote and uphold this commitment. 

As a benefit corporation, we are required to share a Benefit Report at the end of each fiscal year that outlines the work we have done, as well as any potential drawbacks or challenges we have faced, to work towards the specific benefits we have committed to serve. Though 2020 was full of challenges as we all lived and worked through an unprecedented time, we are humbled by the progress we made and continue to make towards creating benefit for our community, the environment, and beyond. We are profoundly moved by the continued work and assistance of our stakeholders to achieve these goals, as well as to create new ones. We look forward to the work that lies ahead of us in 2021. Together, we are better.

On we Go.

- Eric Resch, Benefit Director, Managing Director and Co-owner

Stone Creek Coffee officially became a benefit corporation with the State of Wisconsin on June 5th, 2020. A benefit corporation is a legal entity that formally commits to serving general and specific benefit(s) to the public and the environment by writing social and environmental values into their articles of incorporation. At the end of each fiscal year, benefit corporations publish an annual report that outlines what they have done to serve these benefits, as well as any challenges we have faced in the course of doing so.

Specific Benefit Purposes in Our Bylaws

The purposes for which Stone Creek Coffee’s benefit corporation are formed are as follows:
  1. To create a general public benefit.
  2. To create the specific public benefits of: 
    1. Providing individuals or communities with beneficial products or services.
    2. Preserving the environment.
  3. To do any and all other lawful activities or business permitted under the laws of the United States, Wisconsin, or any other state, territory, or nation.
Major accomplishments:
  1. Became a benefit corporation with the State of Wisconsin.
  2. Officially kicked off our ‘Brewing Change’ initiative, which speaks directly to our commitments to provide stakeholders with beneficial products or services and to preserve the environment. 
  3. Implemented formal policies across the company that benefit our stakeholders (employees, customers, suppliers, community) and the environment. These policies are listed more specifically in the section, Stone Creek Coffee’s Efforts to Create Public Benefit.
  4. Completed the B Impact Assessment as our third-party standard to assess our performance to our commitments, as well as to guide our work. The B Impact Assessment is a free, comprehensive, and transparent tool for assessing overall corporate social and environmental performance. 
By and large, the COVID-19 pandemic was a challenge for us as a company and as individuals. However, rather than allowing the pandemic to become a hindrance to our mission to create benefit, we used this difficult time as an opportunity to pivot our business, as well as take on more projects that seek to benefit our stakeholders, the community, and the environment, which is clearly outlined in the following sections. 

Stone Creek Coffee’s Efforts to Create Public Benefit:

We updated our Articles of Incorporation with the State of WI and officially became a benefit corporation. Being a Benefit Corporation formally demonstrates our commitment to the public and the environment.
  1. Drafted and shared formal SCC Breastfeeding Policy to support lactating employees across teams, no matter their position, location, or employment status. (Officially added to the Employee Handbook in 2021.)
  2. Maintained insurance costs for hourly employees, keeping in line with our commitment to make healthcare accessible for our employees.
  3. Formed our Employee Council. This group consists of one representative from each of our cafes, bakery, and production teams at Stone Creek Coffee. This representative is nominated by their team to meet with Eric, Managing Director and Co-Owner, every other month to discuss items that can be improved within their work spaces or the company as a whole as it relates to day-to-day operations. Specific work items generated through the Employee Council include but are not limited to: requesting mental health days as an added benefit, exploring expression of personalities through more flexible dress code and music choice in work spaces, updating shift drink benefits to include non-dairy products, increasing our vegan and gluten-friendly food menu, greater access to coffee equipment for cafe teams, such as a third espresso grinder, improvements to employee training and access to online HR and benefits tools, and added opportunities to celebrate employees, such as on their birthday.
  4. Employees paid in full during COVID-19 shutdown in order to guarantee wage security. 
  5. Social Justice Donation Matching: Over the course of Summer of 2020 and in line with Stone Creek Coffee’s social obligation to our community, all employee donations made to social justice organizations were matched by Stone Creek Coffee. Employees were encouraged to make donations to local social justice organizations making change in our community such as Wisconsin Voices and MKE LGBT Community Center.  Over the course of the summer, 21 employees donated $5,077.46 to different social justice organizations across Milwaukee and the US that were matched by Stone Creek Coffee. Together, with our employees, we have donated $10,154.92.
  6. Increased amount of paid sick time for all employees (16 hours/year)
  1. Donated food and beverage items to employees during COVID-19 shut-down.
  2. Supplier Screening Topics implemented across the company. This premade list of screening topics serves to better screen our potential suppliers to ensure that they do things such as: follow all laws, possess good governance practices, gives preference to local suppliers, and more.
  3. Supplier Code of Conduct implemented across the company. This document outlines how we expect our partners and suppliers to conduct themselves and their business in an ethical, legal, and socially responsible manner including, but not limited to, their commitment to the environment, their employees, and the community. 
  4. We made a formal commitment to our local community and hiring. In doing so, we have committed to serving our local community by making a commitment to serve local customers, hire locally, and choose local suppliers when possible.
  5. We made available a list of our significant suppliers on our website.

  1. We began monitoring and recording our energy use via a master spreadsheet.
  2. We began monitoring and recording our waste production via a master spreadsheet.
  3. We made the switch to renewable, wind-powered electrical energy at all of our facilities. 
  4. We implemented a Hazardous Waste Disposal Policy across the company.
  5. We implemented an Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Policy. 
  6. We implemented a Travel Policy Addendum which limits corporate travel.
  7. We made a formal policy statement about our commitment to the environment.

  1. COVID-19 Shut-down Donations: To keep all of our employees and customers safe, we shut down our cafes in mid-March due to the spread of Coronavirus. Since we weren’t going to be serving customers and our cafes held perishable products, we donated them to local food pantries and shelters around Milwaukee and Lake Country. Donations included hundreds of gallons of milk, fresh bakery items, bottled beverages, and more.
  2. Social Justice Donations: In the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement happening across our country and the tragic murder of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and countless other innocent people around our country, Stone Creek Coffee donated $2,000 to the Equal Justice Initiative and Radio Milwaukee and their ‘Community Stories’ initiative to help them tell our history.
  3. 10,000 Thank You’s for Teachers and Staff: The 2020 school year looked different for many of us. We understand the challenges that regularly come with teaching, but 2020 came along with more barriers to overcome. To show our appreciation for those members of our community, we committed to make this donation. By the end of 2020, we donated 5,724 pounds, although this project is continuing into 2021 until it is seen through completion. As of March 4th, 2021, we have donated 6,726lbs. 
  4. 1,000 Pounds of Coffee: Stone Creek Coffee partnered with local food banks in March and April 2020 to donate 1,000 pounds of coffee to those in need in our community. In addition, Stone Creek Coffee highlighted community resources and food banks on our social media platforms to spread awareness of assistance available to those in need and to potential volunteers that were willing to help out. 1,000 pounds of coffee was donated to five Milwaukee area food banks including Hunger Task Force and UW-Milwaukee Food Center and Pantry.
  5. Neighbor Loaves: Stone Creek Coffee utilized its unused oven time and our many talented bakers to give back to our community via the Neighbor Loaves program. By purchasing Neighbor Loaves, freshly baked bread was donated directly to the Riverwest Food Pantry. We partnered with the Artisan Grain Collaborative, Meadowlark Organics, and Lonesome Stone Milling to make this program happen. We sold, baked, and donated 711 loaves of bread for the Riverwest Food Pantry. In 2021, we are continuing and expanding this project to a “Buy a Loaf, Give a Loaf” program in our cafes.
  6. Community Fridge Milwaukee: Stone Creek believes that a cup of coffee has the power to heal. In this spirit, we are now supporting the Milwaukee Community Fridge. Each month, a donation of 30, 2.25oz fractional packs of coffee is donated to the Community Fridge. This is an ongoing project.
  7. Community Coffee Donation Boxes: Stone Creek Coffee takes pride in supporting organizations that make our community a better place to live, work, and play. Our goal is to extend deeper within communities in which we operate, by partnering with and supporting organizations that share our values and goals. Stone Creek Coffee offers donations of brewed coffee and gift boxes for raffles. We do not make cash donations unless we are closely involved with an organization. Groups that take priority are non-profit 501c3 organizations, local schools, youth organizations, and businesses we regularly work with. Stone Creek donates a minimum of 9 gift boxes (valued at $40) each month. 
  8. Bake the Vote: Bake the Vote is an international bake sale effort under the Bakers Against Racism banner to raise money for organizations working for fair elections. Our Bakery team made and donated pastries to this citywide bake sale, and proceeds from the sale were donated to Wisconsin Voices, an organization “supporting creative ways to mobilize and empower people across the state.” Our Bakery team made 100 fruit galettes that were donated.
  9. Love your Parks: To support Milwaukee County Parks and their ‘Love Your Parks’ campaign, Stone Creek Coffee teamed up with our friends at Milwaukee County Parks to create a half pound bag of coffee called Love Your Parks. $2 of every purchase of this short run coffee was donated to Milwaukee County Parks. We sold 1,706 bags of Love Your Parks and were able to donate $3,413 to the Milwaukee Parks Department as part of this Brewing Change collaboration. Our goal was to sell 500 bags of Love Your Parks coffee and donate over $1,000 to our County Park system, but with our customers’ support, we surpassed that goal. 
  10. Rally for Ally: For each half-pound of the short-run coffee Rally for Ally sold, Stone Creek would make a donation to the Alyssa Anna Pape Endowment Fund. We were able to donate $956 to this fund, which helps support the Herma Heart Institute at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin.
  11. Participated in Dressember: Human trafficking is a global problem, which doesn’t exclude Milwaukee. Dressember is now a global event where you commit to wearing a dress or tie everyday in the month of December. For every pound of coffee sold on December 4th, 2020, Stone Creek donated $1. In total, we raised awareness for human trafficking as well as donated $397 to the Dressember movement.
We look forward to continuing to benefit those around us in 2021! 
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