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How The Nourish Spot Is Building a Legacy of Healthy Eating and Community Connection The Nourish Spot's Dawn Kelly discusses her entrepreneurial journey, details her family's legacy of courage, and building community through social media.

By Shawn P. Walchef

Key Takeaways

  • Dawn Kelly, the founder of The Nourish Spot, a healthy food and drink destination in New York City, realized that owning her own business could be a reality after taking part in a small business program from Goldman Sachs.
  • She credits her grandfather, a military veteran, and her mother for giving her the courage to leap into small business ownership.
  • Instagram and LinkedIn have been particularly powerful platforms for Dawn's storytelling journey.
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With a family legacy steeped in courage, Dawn Kelly becoming an entrepreneur was almost inevitable.

As the founder of The Nourish Spot, a healthy food and drink destination in New York City, Kelly's small business journey began with big dreams. After an extensive career in the corporate space, the realization of her potential as a business owner took a significant turn during her participation in the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program.

With help from that program and other training (including from the NYC Economic Development Corporation) her eyes were open to her potential. "That's when I realized that I could do this," she told Shawn Walchef of Cali BBQ Media.

Related: 24-Karat Gold Syrup Is Just One Part of This Self-Taught Chef's Empire

Dawn Kelly drew and continues to harvest inspiration from her mother and grandfather. He was a military veteran who settled the family in Jamaica, Queens after being denied housing elsewhere. Her lineage instilled in her the values of diligence and the significance of an early start.

"I'm the oldest in my family, and so one of the things that my grandfather always taught me was the early bird gets the worm," says Dawn. That family legacy was carried on when Kelly started The Nourish Spot with her daughter.

The Power of Social Media for Building Community

For Dawn Kelly, social media, particularly Instagram and LinkedIn, serves as a powerful tool for storytelling and community building.

Embracing the adage that a picture is worth a thousand words, Kelly appreciates the visual storytelling aspect of Instagram, using it to document her personal and professional journey.

Related: How This Chef Navigated a $80,000 Turnaround for His Business

"I love to take pictures. I always have. So what Instagram has allowed me to do, both personally and professionally, is to document my journey," expresses Kelly.

Through social media, she captures moments, showcases accomplishments, and emphasizes the positive impact The Nourish Spot has on the local community.

"There will be no question when I'm no longer here about what I have been able to accomplish and the things that made me happy, as well as the benefits of what our business brings to our community, our Jamaica, Queens community, and beyond."

Related: Celebrity Chef Maneet Chauhan Shares Her Best Tip for Aspiring TV Chefs

About Restaurant Influencers

Restaurant Influencers is brought to you by Toast, the powerful restaurant point-of-sale and management system that helps restaurants improve operations, increase sales and create a better guest experience.

Toast — Powering Successful Restaurants. Learn more about Toast.

Shawn P. Walchef

Founder of Cali BBQ Media

“Be the show, not the commercial.”

Cali BBQ Media Founder Shawn Walchef helps brands and leaders leverage the new Business Creator Economy with strategic Smartphone Storytelling and Digital Hospitality.

His Cali BBQ restaurant company has generated more than $35 million since opening in 2008. They operate numerous locations in San Diego and beyond.

Shawn’s weekly video series Restaurant Influencers (published by Entrepreneur Media and produced by Cali BBQ Media) has been seen by over 25 million people.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

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