Red Bay Coffee Celebrates Women in Leadership

The power of women is undeniable. As millions celebrate Women’s History Month, we want to spotlight the women of RBC by launching our Women In Leadership Project. This series of photos and interviews features the dynamic women behind our brand.


In an era where wage gaps persist, women's participation in the workforce has stagnated and women of color are under represented in managerial positions, we stand out. These roles, including  Director of Design, Director of Coffee, Venue Manager, Customer Relations Manager, Quality Control Lead and Store Lead, are all held by women.
"We are excited to feature this diverse group of hard working women who chose to be part of making our company grow and flourish.  We know we could not do it without them" 

Keba Konte, Founder

Photos by: Pam Borrelli, San Francisco based photographer and Board President of the historic San Francisco Women Artist - Gallery located at 647 Irving Street, SF

ALICIA ADAMS - Director of Coffee

Before Red Bay Coffee,  I was a Quality Control Specialist at Volcafe Specialty Coffee, processing and cupping a very high volume of samples from all over.  At Red Bay Coffee, I am the Director of Coffee, and I cup, develop roast profiles, train and educate about coffee, and communicate with our partners at origin.

-Where were you born
I was born in Stamford, Connecticut
-What is your spirit animal and why
My spirit animal is a Monarch butterfly because I feel like I am always evolving, transforming and recreating myself.
-Best coffee childhood memories
I grew up on the East Coast. My best childhood memories with coffee were brewing coffee in the automatic pot for my parents after dinner and trips to Dunkin Donuts.
-Tell us something about yourself that most people don’t know.
Most people don't know that I have my motorcycle license.

 

 

 

JESSIE LLARINAS - Quality Control Lead

Before I began my career with Red Bay Coffee, I was working in retail and also managing my personal fitness business.I started in Production packing coffee, and now I specifically work as the Quality Control Lead. I am honored to continue to grow and be a part of this wonderfully amazing company.

-Where were you born?
I was born in San Francisco California.
-What is your spirit animal and why?
My spirit animal would be a Bird, a Peacock .
I like to spread my wings and fly . I am full of positive vibes and I am filled with joy & happiness.
-Best coffee childhood memories.
I was in a coffee shop in downtown San Francisco with one of my Aunts having my first cup of coffee. I was
17 that’s when I knew I would come to enjoy it .
-Tell us something about yourself that most people don’t know.
In my moments of time whether it’s sad or happiness , I write Poetry.  I have been a writer since the 4th grade. I am published in the World Book of Poetry.



 

 

JESSICA MONCADA KONTE - Venue Manager

Before Red Bay Coffee, I worked for 10 years in Bay Area fine dining. I moved into sustainable event planning and coordination. My work at Red Bay Coffee now as the Venue Coordinator and Brand Ambassador feels like a perfect balance of the work I have enjoyed for so long.

-Where were you born
I was born in San Francisco, California.
-What is your spirit animal and why
Beyoncè is my spirit animal; a good friend thought it fit me best.
-Best coffee childhood memories
My father steaming milk on my grandmother's espresso machine with honey and spices before I went to bed. The sounds always scared me, but it tasted so good.
-Tell us something about yourself that most people don’t know.
I have a subscription to Martha Stewart Living.

 

 

 

 

 

MARIA FERNANDEZ - Customer Relations Manager

Prior to Red Bay Coffee, I worked in Director to Consumer Marketing in the wine industry for wineries throughout the Central Coast and Napa - lived on a gorgeous vineyard too - a beautiful “grape to glass” wine experience.  I'm now honored to be the Customer Relations Manager at Red Bay Coffee - I manage our wholesale coffee program for offices, cafes, and restaurants, as well as our Direct to Consumer programs. I'm also part of our Marketing Team and manage our Catering Program.

-Where were you born?
I was Born in Oakland, CA - Oaktown!
-What is your spirit animal and why?
My Spirit Animal is the Bear, because it symbolizes, strength, courage, protection and leadership.
-Best coffee childhood memories.
The warmth of the kitchen and the smell of coffee brewing in my parent's electric percolator.
-Tell us something about yourself that most people don’t know.
I am extremely ticklish (oops, now everyone knows).

 

 

 

 

 

 

TATEONA HUGHES - Store Lead

Before Red Bay Coffee, I worked in a small coffee house in Kaiser Hospital; It was a good three months moving cross-country to the Bay Area from Detroit. Now I'm the Red Bay Coffee Box Store Lead.

-Where were you born?
I was born in Detroit, Michigan - they say our cities are sisters!
-What is your spirit animal and why?
I feel like my spirit animal is a candle - sometimes I am the light, sometimes I am the dark before the flame.
-Best coffee childhood memories.
My best coffee childhood memory has to be a lifetime of my father drinking Coney Island coffee: his drink? a double-double drip, two creams and two sugars.
-Tell us something about yourself that most people don’t know.
Off the clock, I'm an astrologer - I love to read planetary placements, transits, and constellations.

 

 

 

RACHEL KONTE - Chief of Design

Before my life in coffee I was Women’s Design Director for Levi Strauss & Co in San Francisco. I currently run my own store, OwlNWood in Old Oakland, where I design and produce a small collection of locally made Women’s Tops. I have been Chief of Design at Red Bay Coffee since 2014

-Where were you born?
Born and raised in Copenhagen Denmark. Arrived in the US in 1993.
-What is your spirit animal and why?
I feel my spirit animal is a Raven. I have always been attracted to this gorgeous bird and I actually raised a wild danish bird similar to a small Raven - called Allike in Danish - when I was 12 Years old.
-Best coffee childhood memories.
It is making coffee for my mother every morning. She was a single mom working long hours, so my sister and I learned early to have a cup of coffee by her bedside. This was brewed as a single pot of pour over and I loved the smell of coffee.
-Tell us something about yourself that most people don’t know.
I lived 4 years on a farm in a very small Danish village on the island of Jutland. We moved to this remote place in 1970’s with romantic notions of leaving the City for the countryside. It gave me the foundation of my gardening and outdoor spirit.