Lawren Askinosie grew up around craft chocolate, and with craft chocolate. Still in high school when her father transitioned from courtroom to chocolate-making and started one of the first small batch chocolate factories in America, she assisted him in almost every facet of their new life as chocolate makers—from working the storefront to developing marketing material. Eager to jump into the family business full-time Lawren began college early and upon graduation at 20, dove headfirst into learning the ins and outs of operating a bean to bar chocolate factory, building a brand, and marketing and selling craft chocolate.
Now the Chief Marketing Officer of the direct trade business that Forbes recently named “One of the 25 Best Small Companies In America,” Lawren is passionate about more than helping to shape the conversation around craft chocolate. She loves assisting Shawn to build sustainable relationships with smallholder cocoa farmers (especially female farmers), telling those stories, and finding innovative ways to connect the dots between the direct trade model, quality, and community. A passionate advocate for women, Lawren works to empower women through every aspect of the business from helping to seek out female-led farmer groups to facilitating girls empowerment initiatives in Askinosie’s cocoa origin communities. Lawren’s first book, which she co-authored with her father, called Meaningful Work: A Quest To Do Great Business, Find Your Calling And Feed Your Soulwill be released on November 14
Lawren is based in Austin, TX with her husband and three dogs (we lovingly call it "The Austin Annex"). Because technology, she's able to do her job remotely but also spends tons of time at the chocolate factory in Springfield. When she's not chocolate-ing or traveling, she's eating her way through Austin (with particular emphasis on tacos, BBQ and margaritas) and listening to live music.