A Common Theme ... Helping The Environment
U•Konserve waste-free and reusable lunch-packing and food-storage solutions were a natural outgrowth of what two women saw as a critical need that required immediate attention. With the premise that any business they undertook had to help the environment in some way, it didn’t take much imagination to see how they, as parents of young children, were contributing to garbage landfills, pollutants and sending the wrong message to their own children. How could they set an example of conservation for their children and empower them to be examples of change for the future?
Calculating the amount of lunch trash being produced each day at their own schools shocked them enough to begin more research into reusable products that would dramatically cut down on our Earth’s ever-growing garbage pile. Focusing on how school lunch programs operate opened their eyes and propelled them to create Kids Konserve.
Co-Founder, Chief Growth Officer
Lynn began her career working for an institutional financial advisor in the San Francisco Bay Area. She later moved to Denver, Colorado and became a manager for a large mutual fund company, then accepted another challenge when a new company emerged. In her role as Senior Vice President, she grew the financial services organization to over 100 branches nationwide, and recruited and managed over 500 brokers and advisors. She left the firm to raise her kids and soon became aware of the tons of lunch trash being added to landfills every year. In 2008 she partnered with her co-founder, Chance, to address this pressing issue, and Kids Konserve was born. Lynn and Chance have managed to create a perfect balance of running a business together in two different locations. It has been an evolving process that has naturally fallen into place and managed to work just right. Lynn runs the corporate “home office” managing all aspects of the financial, legal, systems and technology areas of the company along with sales, operations, wholesale and international sales.
Co-Founder, Chief Visionary Officer
Chance was an original team member for the launch and positioning of Design Within Reach (DWR), a contemporary retail furniture company with a nationwide presence. Prior to that she co-launched Pentimento, an architectural series of ceramics designed by Michael Vanderbyl. She has also been a consultant for merchandising and marketing for start-up companies. After the birth of her daughter in 2003, the onset of ‘stress’ about the state of our environment began. Chance postponed her desire to publish a children’s book about conservation, partnered with her good friend to create a product line that would educate children and their parents on the importance of ‘reuse’, and Kids Konserve was born. She hopes that U•Konserve will be a pro-environmental force that will inspire and educate others. Her expertise for U•Konserve: Product development and design, marketing strategy and branding, manufacturer communication and compliance, inventory management, and special projects.
President, Vice President of Sales
Leila joined U•Konserve in 2015, bringing an extensive retail merchandising background to the team. Leila brings 20+ years of experience leading successful premium hard goods cross-functional teams (assortment planning, design, inventory management, financial planning, sourcing and marketing) for retail stores, catalogs and the Internet. For the past nine years she has served as Vice President of Merchandising for Restoration Hardware where she was one of the key team leaders to turn the company around. She has also launched many new businesses for blue chip brands such as Martha Stewart Living and Dean & Deluca. She has held various key leadership positions at Williams-Sonoma, Pottery Barn, Petopia, and I. Magnin. She also serves as president of the National Charity League and is a mom of 13-year-old twins.
In 2009, after graduating from the University of Wisconsin and working in the corporate fitness industry, Courtney joined Kids Konserve as an administrative assistant. Her expertise and skills became more apparent and she began to add to not only the day-to-day workings of Kids Konserve, but also the vision and mission of the company. In 2011 she became our full-time Operations Manager. Courtney has a handle on all the day-to-day operations of the company including acting as a key account manager for many of our large customers. She also runs our operational systems, including ordering, invoicing and reporting. She manages fulfillment and wholesale sales/operations, and supports reps in the field, direct wholesale customers and international distributors. Courtney has added value and efficiency to many areas of the company including streamlining our shipping, billing, and wholesale documentation processes. She also assists the co-founders in multiple aspects of running the business including finance, marketing, technology and customer service.
National Sales Manager
Lori joined Kids Konserve as their National Sales Manager in September 2012 after working as their Northern California Sales Representative for the year prior. She brings many years of experience working as a sales manager and rep in multiple regions and various accounts, having specialized at one time in the Natural Grocery Market and working with nine different lines of sustainable housewares products. She has many years of experience with trade shows, and focusing on sales growth and support including everything from introducing new products to opening new stores. Lori will be responsible for supporting current regional reps and growing our representation in regions we have not fully saturated, as well as creating and managing the sales plan for the U.S. market. Lori lives in Petaluma, California, and is a busy mom of two boys.
Wendy joined Kids Konserve in 2009 to manage our school program, and has since taken on many new roles to educate our customers and grow our business. Her marketing and design expertise, as well as her passion to improve personal and environmental health, has helped us effectively develop and communicate our message. She works closely with our team to help with marketing and planning, brand strategy, product launches, collateral design, content, photography and research. She continues to manage our school outreach program, and works daily with schools to offer our products and provide resources to help students and parents find creative ways to reduce waste. Before coming to Kids Konserve, Wendy took eight years off to raise her two kids, and before that she spent several years as an Account Director and Creative Services manager at Barclays Global Investors in San Francisco.
Customer Service Representative
Liz joined U•Konserve in 2015, bringing an extensive administrative background to the team. A Southern California native, her work over the last 15 years has been in the real estate and legal industries. Her real estate experience includes positions such as contract specialist, closing specialist and escrow coordinator. In 2010 her work shifted to the legal industry when she relocated to Phoenix and took an administrative position at a real estate law firm. This progressed into a position as an executive assistant to one of the partners. Liz brings her organizational experience and heavy multi-tasking abilities to the Scottsdale office to assist with daily operations, customer service requests and general office support. For many years she has had a growing desire to do something more meaningful in her workplace. She is excited to be a part of the U•Konserve team and to contribute to something that protects the environment.
Images Courtesy of Kay & Co. Photography