20 Under 40: New leaders, classic values

Kenneth M., 34, and Katrina G., 34, Hebb
Blackbird Cafe and St. Lawrence Brewing Co.

Hometown: Ken: Buena Vista, Colo.; Katrina: Littleton, Colo.
Professional position: Entrepreneurs and co-owners
Family: Daughter, Lexi; son, Henry.
Education: Ken: Bachelor’s degree, philosophy; MBA; Katrina: Bachelor’s degree, math and Biblical studies
Community involvement: Ken: Treasurer, Grasse River Heritage Area Corp.; Katrina: Pastor, Lisbon United Presbyterian Church; board member, Women of Grace Widows’ Fund and member, Grasseroots Fund
Last book read: Katrina: “Radical Homemakers: Reclaiming Domesticity from a Consumer Culture” by Shannon Hayes

Kenneth M. and Katrina G. Hebb may have been drawn to the north country for its peace and tranquility, but life has been anything but stagnant for the entrepreneurial-minded couple.

Five years ago, the Hebbs opened Blackbird Café on Canton’s Main Street, a successful business venture that has helped revitalize downtown and illustrated the popularity of healthy, locally-grown food.

Offering breakfast, lunch and dinner, the café’s annual gross sales have climbed to nearly half a million dollars. Recently, the couple expanded into the building’s upper floor where they opened the Parkview, a wine bar and catering venue.

“We’re dedicated to a quality product and to keeping economy local, which is why we buy as much local, organic and fair trade products as possible,” Mrs. Hebb said. “I think our customers appreciate what we’re about.

Because we offer a product that’s relevant to their lives, in an atmosphere that’s comfortable and sophisticated, the model works.”

Mr. Hebb agreed that the couple’s philosophy has helped them succeed.

“We’re certainly in this to make a profit, but money is not the only bottom line,” he said. “We’re very intentional about doing things that are interesting to us as people, creating culture and making our community a better place.”

Next on their agenda is opening the St. Lawrence Brewing Co., a microbrewery planned for Canton that will brew craft beer. The couple will purchase barley, hops and maple syrup from local farmers and contracted with a local welder to produce the equipment. They hope to begin distributing beer by St. Patrick’s Day.

-Susan Mende
[Editor’s note: This is a truncated version of this story. For the full version, please see NNY Business in print or subscribe.]

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