Katie Carguilo - Quality is a moving target.
Quality Analyst at Counter Culture Coffee

Katie Carguilo works in the coffee department for Counter Culture Coffee as the Quality Analyst for their west coast roasting facility in Emeryville, CA. Prior to, she was a barista trainer on the Customer Support team for Counter Culture in New York City, and even spent time as a barista in Washington, DC. Katie is also the 2012 United States Barista Champion.


Charles Babinski - Coffee Not Difficult: How I Make Coffee Good
Co-founder of G&B Coffee and Go Get Em Tiger, 2015 US Barista Champion

Charles Babinski is the cofounder of two coffee shops in Los Angeles: G&B and Go Get Em Tiger. Having worked in specialty coffee shops across the US over the past dozen years, Charles has developed a passion for the retail coffee experience, something that's reflected in the service he and his business partner, Kyle Glanville, have developed at their shops.

Photo credit: Amparo Rios


Sarah Bennett - The Necessary Beerification of Coffee
Freelance Craft Beer Journalist

Sarah Bennett is a freelance journalist specializing in the culture, industry and business of craft beer. Her words on the subject have been published in L.A. Weekly, OC Weekly, Beer Advocate Magazine, First We Feast, Thrillist, Drink Me! Magazine and CNN Travel, among others. She first discovered her love of the populist beverage while beertending her way through journalism school and she has watched craft beer grow from an underground movement to an international phenomenon. She is a founding editor of Beer Paper L.A. -- the only monthly print publication covering craft beer in greater Los Angeles -- and is the former Food Editor at L.A. Weekly, where she also covered the local coffee scene.




Jesse Kahn
Counter Culture Coffee

Jesse Kahn has spent the last 5 years designing Training Centers for Counter Culture Coffee, in cities such as New York, Boston, Charleston, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. In between construction projects, he is the sales representative of Counter Culture's New York Regional Support Team. Before working for Counter Culture, Jesse spent some time trying to bring great coffee to the Bizarro World that is airport food service.


Kyle Glanville
Co-founder, G&B Coffee and Go Get Em Tiger

Kyle Glanville is the co-founder of G&B Coffee and Go Get Em Tiger, two widely acclaimed coffee bars in Los Angeles. In 2014, G&B was named Imbibe Magazine's "Coffee bar of the Year" and was the subject of a New York Times feature titled "The Best Iced Latte in America?".

Before starting his own company, Kyle served as Intelligentsia Coffee's VP of Strategy and spearheaded their Los Angeles expansion in addition to sourcing all of the company's green coffee in Brazil. Even though Kyle won the 2008 United States Barista Championship, he is at best the 10th most skilled barista in his company.

Arion Paylo
Director of Cafe Development, Blue Bottle Coffee

The son of an artisan carpenter, Arion was initially drawn to the keyboard instead of the table saw. After 11 years at Apple he's gone from thinking about how Genius Bars work to how coffee bars work. At Blue Bottle, he strives to create beautiful cafes that foster memorable moments with delicious coffee.


MODERATOR: Björg Brend Laird
Co-founder, Supersonic Coffee

Björg Laird is the co-founder of Supersonic Coffee, a coffee roasting/wholesale operation located in Berkeley, CA. Her job is to support and encourage her Supersonic colleagues to be awesome at what they do. This includes everything from long-term planning and day-to-day organizing, to writing/editing text, internal communication and preserving the Supersonic mind set. In her spare time, Björg hosts a podcast called Coffee Awesome.