We had the good fortune of connecting with David Clarke and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi David, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I had been a coffee geek for over 35 years after falling in love with espresso on a visit to Italy and I was also very motivated by the lack of real community as experienced in my home continent of Europe. Having the vision for a combination of coffee motivated community and being at the end of wanting to be working in a corporate environment, I set out to create a business plan and pursue my dream of creating this business to fulfill the above vision.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I have done many things in my career including psychiatric nursing, banking, church leadership, IT, Software and a number of senior management roles. I have always sought to add value to the businesses and jobs I have had and have a history of being promoted rapidly because of that. I have always been able to assume leadership and gained the support and cooperation of others which took me to the board of directors in a company with 16 businesses throughout the middle east and then to assume leadership of a Professional Services organization with over 70 employees. This last was achieved at the suggestion of my peers when a vacant SVP position happened in the last company I worked for. I enjoy motivating and encouraging people to achieve their goals and have had a lot of success doing that.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I would take them to eat at one of Marcus Pasley’s restaurants, show them the spot where JFK was shot. I would then hop into our little 4 seater plane and take them out to some of the more scenic parts of the area such as Mineral Wells and maybe stop for a little German food in Granbury, visit the Air Museum in Mount Pleasant and then come back and simply relax for a bit of home cooking and a nice whiskey and coffee. During the day, visiting the Kimble or Modern Art museums and of course Fort Worth Symphony a big favorite
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I have to give a shoutout to my wife of 40 years who has consistently stood by me and supported our vision. Whilst she has done plenty of things to enhance our business, she only plays a minor active role. However, when the business was on the line and we were close to bankruptcy after 3 years and we had to sell our house and live in rented accomadation for 5 years, she never complained and simply rolled with the punches. We have now been able to live in our own house again for the last 5 years but she continues to be a steadfast support and I couldn’t have done this without her.
Linkedin: David Clarke
Yelp: Buon Giorno Coffee Grapevine and Fort Worth
Other: Personal blog verysmallrocks.io
It would only let me upload one image – this is our newest location in Fort Worth just after we opened