What’s your name and What did you do prior to coffee?
Stephen Houston, Worked in various call centers for about 7 1/2 years and then a few fashion retail locations. I also was an stencil artist for around 10 years in my spare time, not much time for it now since I found coffee!
When and how did you first get into Coffee?
Started drinking it when I was about 14-15 and just enjoyed it, only got into it properly once I applied for a roastery assistant job in Bailies, that was just over 4 years ago.
How did you get involved in SCA?
Under the company we are members and I have done up to my professional level qualifications in Barista and Grinding and brewing. In 2016 I got involved with the RGE and over the last year I have become a member of the membership committee on the CRG. I have also competed in competitions under the SCA since 2016.
What encouraged you to become an ambassador and what area do you cover?
I really love what I do as a coffee professional and I always want to meet like minded people, I believe communities such as these only make us all better and really help drive an interest in specialty coffee. I would love to assist the SCA and CRG in encouraging others to join, I have been lucky enough to benefit from being a member and happy to share that with the local community.
Where do you see the chapter going with your involvement?
Hopefully gain more membership and more visibility of what members would like to see the SCA and Guilds do for them as coffee professionals, Also help strengthen our competition side, with more members, that could mean bigger and better competitions with more structure and heighten our stance on the world stage.
Why would you encourage people to become members of SCA?
I have first hand experiencing the benefits of being an SCA member, with my own personal training through the SCA I have become a better barista, roaster and professional. I would happily share that with new members, providing resource and advice if needed. I also think events that support what we do as a chapter are a good way of engagement, so hosting/attending an event based around local coffee professionals would be something I’d love to do.
What coffee are you currently drinking and how is it brewed?
A new coffee I have just roasted, a Costa Rica Red Honey Typica from Finca Volcan Azul. Currently enjoying it on a Kalita wave 155