Submitted by Starbucks Corporation
Created in 1987, the Costa Rica Coffee Merit Medal is presented annually to acknowledge significant contributions by an individual or company to the coffee industry in the areas of coffee production, milling, export and roasting in Costa Rica. A commission appointed by the National Coffee Congress selects the winner from a list of nominations submitted by the country's different coffee sectors. Williams was nominated by the Association of Specialty Coffee of Costa Rica. In addition to the award ceremony, a private luncheon in Williams' honor was hosted by Dr. Abel Pacheco, the president of Costa Rica.
"During her 10 years of service at Starbucks, Mary brought the company's mission and guiding principles to life through her focus on improving the livelihood of those growing coffee," said Orin Smith, Starbucks president and chief executive officer. "Through her winning combination of beliefs and business sense, she was an asset to Starbucks and those in the coffee industry in Costa Rica. We look forward to continuing our commitment to Costa Rica coffee producers and bringing their wonderful coffees to our customers around the world."
"More than 20 years ago I traveled to Costa Rica on my first coffee buying trip," said Williams. "Since that inaugural visit, I have developed many cherished friendships, business relationships and countless memories. It has been a pleasure to work with a country and those in the supply chain that recognize the importance of addressing the challenges facing coffee producers."
About Mary Williams
As one of the most skilled coffee tasters in the world and one of the few women in the green coffee business, Mary Williams' 30 years of experience made her part adventurer and part determined investigator. Williams joined Starbucks Coffee Company in 1993 as vice president, Green Coffee, and was promoted to senior vice president, Coffee in 1997. In 2002, she was named chairman of Starbucks Coffee Trading Company, Lausanne, Switzerland. As senior vice president, Coffee, Williams was responsible for ensuring that Starbucks serves only the best coffees the world has to offer, overseeing green coffee purchasing, roasting, blending, recipe development and coffee education of Starbucks partners (employees). In late 2002 Williams retired as the senior vice president of Coffee for Starbucks. She currently serves as an advisor to the Company. Williams will continue to serve as an advisor to Starbucks and is currently in her second term as chairwoman of the National Coffee Association of America.
About Starbucks Coffee Company
Starbucks Coffee Company is the leading retailer, roaster and brand of specialty coffee in the world, with more than 7,000 retail locations in North America, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and the Pacific Rim. The Company is committed to offering the highest quality coffee and the Starbucks Experience while conducting its business in ways that produce social, environmental and economic benefits for communities in which it does business. In addition to its retail operations, the Company produces and sells bottled Frappuccino® coffee drinks, Starbucks DoubleShot(tm) coffee drink, and a line of superpremium ice creams through its joint venture partnerships. The Company's brand portfolio provides a wide variety of consumer products. Tazo Tea's line of innovative premium teas and Hear Music's exceptional compact discs enhance the Starbucks Experience through best-of-class products. The Seattle's Best Coffee® and Torrefazione Italia® Coffee brands enable Starbucks to appeal to a broader consumer base by offering an alternative variety of coffee flavor profiles.
It's the way we do business Contributing positively to our communities and environment is so important to Starbucks that it's a guiding principle of our mission statement. We jointly fulfill this commitment with partners (employees), at all levels of the company, by getting involved together to help build stronger communities and conserve natural resources.
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