Featured Entrepreneur

Featured Entrepreneur: Connie Griffith and Debbie Kauffman

Featured Entrepreneur

Can I tell you about Connie and Debbie, and what I love about their business?

Gator Ron's

Connie Griffith is the President of Gator Ron’s, and Debbie Kauffman is her business partner and VP. Together these women are the driving force behind Gator Ron’s Zesty Sauces & Mixes, a woman-owned company that is bringing delicious sauces to your local area stores while also helping to raise money for ALS research by donating a percentage of all sales to the Robert Packard Center for ALS Research at Johns Hopkins.

To say that these Bloody Mary mixes and barbecue and wing sauces are delicious would be the understatement of the year. In the last 10 months, these women have gotten their products into almost 70 new stores, including Whole Foods, in 17 of Montgomery County’s 23 liquor stores, and are used by a number of restaurants and bars, including Mon Ami Gabi and Olazzo in Bethesda. Gator Ron’s was recently named “Start Up Company of the Year” by Montgomery County’s Small Business Awards and was recently featured in Maryland Life magazine! Oh, and did we mention they are now shipping to Canada? Truly an amazing business growth story!

What I love about their business is not just the growth trajectory or the mission that they serve by donating to ALS research, a tribute to Connie’s late husband Ron whose passion and recipes helped create the business, although this would be worthy enough. In fact, what I love most about these business owners is that they operate with complete certainty that this business will succeed.

Certainty and confidence go hand in hand, although in this case, the women approach them separately. In entrepreneurship certainty usually goes along with sheer grit and steadfast determination that success is the only option. Connie and Debbie are wonderful examples of what can happen when you have a great product, you focus on your goals, and you do whatever it takes to get there. But what also makes Connie and Debbie ‘Women we Admire’ is the fact that they also turn to one another and to others for the added confidence they need to continue to achieve their results. When they don’t know how to do something, they ask, when something is unknown, they look into it. This genuine curiosity, lack of ego-driven blinders, and authentic passion is so sincere, you can’t help but cheer them on. Sometimes just being yourself is the best formula for success!

Connie is a member of our Chevy Chase group, Debbie is a member of our Bethesda group, and together they are extraordinary entrepreneurs and women to watch!

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