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A majority of founders and leadership in growing companies in the food and beverage space have reported that they expect to see growth in 2020.  Even after the volatility and challenges of 2020 – the food and beverage industry as a whole is looking forward to 2021 to see what products will impact and hit with consumers and the marketplace.  Join us to explore and examine that “growth” as part of our Founders Series for 2021 – the conversation that founders and leadership from growing companies across the Midwest want to be a part of!

The Founders Series has been re-imaged for 2021, in partnership with Foodbevy and CA Fortune, we are looking to industry experts, a wide range of successful and growing founders, and our own partners to provide hands-on learning opportunities around each of our primary topic areas.  Join us to explore how your peers and industry can help you tackle growth in 2021.


*As always, Founders and CFBN Members attend these events for FREE.  Reach out by dropping us an email if you are looking to be connected!

  • Quarter 3 (July 22):  Production & Operations
  • Quarter 4 (TBA):  Finance

With the enhancement of technology and continued innovation in the production and operations sector,  food and beverage owners and founders have lots of factors to consider. Leadership in growing companies can incorporate smart processes freeing up time to focus on other aspects of their business.  Join us for the third event in the 2021 Founders Series to talk Production and Operations. Don’t miss the in-depth conversation ranging from third-party logistics, greater investment in automation, safety standards, and consumer requested transparency of the supply chain.

Register for this 60-minute webinar featuring our speakers and guests.  Join the conversation during the Q&A portion and engage with our panel of speakers.

  • 11:00 AM:  General Welcome (Alan Reed, CFBN)
  • 11:05 AM – 12:00 PM:   Featured Conversation and Q&A



William MaddenSenior Partner/Co-founder, Whole Brain Consulting

Senior partner, William Madden Ph.D., has worked in the food industry for the past 20 years. He specializes in big-picture operations and supply chain management and contract negotiation between food companies and contract manufacturers.  Madden has helped everything from start-ups to multimillion-dollar businesses find perfect-match contract manufacturers, setting them up for long term success. He is also the author of “Separating the Con Man From the Co Man – A Guide to Contract Manufacturing” (Train of Thought Press, available at Barnes and Noble and Amazon).

Natalie ShmulikCEOThe Hatchery Chicago

Natalie Shmulik is The Hatchery’s CEO, and go-to resource for launching a successful food and beverage business. After successfully operating her own restaurant, Natalie was hired as a specialty consultant for one of Ontario’s largest supermarket chains where she enhanced consumer experiences through educational initiatives. Discovering her passion for innovation, Natalie was brought on as a brand strategist for the first cold brew tea company and later moved to Chicago to run The Hatchery Chicago. With over six years of food incubation experience, Natalie has gained a unique perspective on the industry and what it takes to launch and grow a successful business. 

Jordann AmateaFounderBase Culture

Jordann Amatea is the Founder of Base Culture, a natural food brand that produces delicious gluten-free, grain-free and Paleo baked goods and almond butters. Base Culture created its own state-of-the-art manufacturing facility before its national launch in 2017. Through its tremendous growth, Base Culture continues to own its entire production process and ensure the highest product quality. Base Culture products can now be found in over 12,000 stores, with national distribution in natural, grocery, and e-commerce channels. 


Jordan Buckner, Founder  Foodbevy & Founder  TeaSquares

Jordan Buckner is on a mission to help food and beverage companies build successful businesses, and launched to create a pipeline for companies to grow from startup to scale by reducing the resource and network gaps.  Jordan also co-founded TeaSquares, a line of superfood energy bars designed to help people stay focused and alert so they could achieve their passions. 

Steve Gaither, Chief Marketing OfficerCA Fortune

Steve Gaither is the Chief Marketing Officer at C.A. Fortune, and leads the C.A. Branding pillar. Founded as JB Chicago, C.A. Branding is an integrated marketing agency whose clients range from Fortune 500, middle-market, to emerging brands.  As a mentor at the Good Food Business Accelerator, ICNC, the Food Foundry, Chicagoland Food and Bev, and The Hatchery, his relationships with entrepreneurs led him to co-found the Windy City Troublemakers, an early-stage food meetup in Chicago. Steve was formerly a partner in Spiral Sun Ventures and Windy City Food Brands, where he and his fellow CPG experts provided the capital and go-to market strategies that help brands accelerate their growth. Steve graduated from Ball State University with a degree in Architecture and Planning. He resides in Munster, Indiana with his wife and three children.

Event Details
07. 22. 2021
11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Free – $10