As of June 1, 2010 there will be a new management regime at PT’s original location, Barrington Village. As the location has grown throughout its 17 years in operation, so has the role of management so we decided that it was time to take a little bit different approach…

Three people in three distinct positions. Each of them can have a primary focus on an aspect of the business, bringing their own skills sets and experience to their respective areas. As of yesterday Keith Dunbar, Morgan Smith, and Nikki Strong have accepted their positions! Here’s a little bit about each of them-

Keith Dunbar- Manager of Operations

Keith has been a barista for PT’s Coffee since 2008, but has been in coffee for about 5 years now. Finding that his love for the craft has only grown over time, he jumped at the opportunity to take on a bigger role. As a student at Washburn University here in Topeka, KS, he has been studying both Marketing and Economics and expects to graduate in May of 2011. His skill sets lend him to be a great manager for the ins and outs of operation, as well as having a way with people. Here’s a little more about Keith:

What’s your favorite coffee currently and why? “Currently I find myself favoring the Ethiopian Sidama Ardi. The light roast we’ve been running with allows for a great natural sweetness, perfect for spring.

How do you brew your coffee at home? “Most of the time I just run down to the shop, but when I do brew at home, I use french press”

If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go? “Because I’m such a fan of cycling and a lover of coffee, I’d probably go to Europe. I would love to get over there in July to see the Tour de France and enjoy a street side cafe or two…”

What made you want to pursue the manager position at PT’s Barrington Village? “After working for the organization, I felt it was time for me to step up and do all I can for PT’s. I feel I have great organizational skills and wanted to put them to better use”

Morgan Smith- Coffee Quality Manager

Morgan might have only been with PT’s for a year, but it has been a really busy one for her! Last summer when the SCAA’s Midwest Regional Barista Competition was announced to be held at the end of October, she decided that she would see what she was made of. After giving up the majority of her social life for several months in order to be prepared, she not only made the finals, but walked away with the third place trophy! Since then she has prepared for her first national championship where she ranked in the top 25 baristas in the United States. We expect great things! She now wants to focus her energies into Barrington and help elevate the level of coffee knowledge, both with customers and her peers. Here’s a little about Morgan-

What’s your favorite coffee and why? Costa Rica from Finca Cerro, Paldo, still… (she used this coffee at the United States Barista Championship). It’s clean, mellow and very well rounded”

How did you get into coffee? “I was born into it. My mom opened a coffee shop when I was born so that she would be able to work and still spend time with me. It was the customers that made me want to stick with it.”

If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go? “Easy. Italy or Greece!”

What made you want to pursue one of the manager positions at PT’s Barrington Village? “I saw things that I felt really needed a change and I thought I could be the right person to change them.”

Nikki Strong- Manager of Food and Bakery

Nikki started with PT’s in 2004, but her romance with coffee started in high school. Before she was taken on as a barista, she was a customer and has been a part of the PT’s family for over a decade. Through out her time with us she has also had opportunities to work for other companies that taught her the value of systems and has a firm understanding of how to apply that specifically to the area of food service. She has a creative outlook on life and we look forward to her bringing that into play with our food offerings and systems at Barrington Village. Here’s what Nikki had to say for herself-

What’s your favorite coffee and why? “I love just about every Costa Rican. They are sweet and chocolaty and yummy!”

How do you brew your coffee at home? “I don’t right now. I usually go to the shop. I want a Chemex but I’m afraid I’ll break it…”

How did you get into coffee? “I started hanging out at PT’s in high school, and that’s where I met my boyfriend (he was a barista there) and a lot of my friends. When a job became available at PT’s Stormont Vail (one of our former locations), I jumped in.”

If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go? “Somewhere tropical, but not touristy. The South Pacific or Caribbean. I spent a couple vacations in the British Virgin Islands on a chartered sail boat with my family and I loved it!”

What made you want to pursue a management position at PT’s Barrington Village? “I love the shop and I want to help make it even better. I’ve worked at other coffee shops that don’t have the same camaraderie and excitement, and now I’m happy to be back home at PT’s.”

We are excited to see where these three take our retail experience! Please stop by the cafe and congratulate them when you have the chance!