We were lucky to catch up with Joshua Dean recently and have shared our conversation below.
Alright, Joshua thanks for taking the time to share your stories and insights with us today. We’d love to hear about a project that you’ve worked on that’s meant a lot to you.
I served on the board for a local chapter of the National Restaurant Association for several years.
We would budget thousands of dollars each year to spend purchasing animals at the fair.
Instead of bidding on the “winners”, we would go to the back and find kids with the animals they spent the last year tending too and ask them how much they spent raising that particular animal. Then we would offer them hundreds over that.
After collecting upwards of a dozen animals consisting of pigs, cows and sheep, we would send them to a processor and donate all the meat to women’s shelters, children’s homes etc.
In one afternoon, we impacted not only local students, but also helped to feed people in need for a better part of the year. Truly unforgettable experience.
Great, appreciate you sharing that with us. Before we ask you to share more of your insights, can you take a moment to introduce yourself and how you got to where you are today to our readers?
Growing up in small town Texas, one thing I could always count on was both my grandmothers spending much of their time in their kitchens, not only trying to feed me, but also teaching me via stories from the past as well as encouraging me to follow their lead. To this day, I remember climbing up on a stool so I could peer over the pot to get a glimpse and a whiff of the meal to come.
It wasn’t until I was half way through a psychology degree that I realized I wanted to pursue a career that made me happy.
Cooking and feeding people brings joy. When people ask “why” I enjoy cooking, I share this…
One summer, I harvested figs and preserved them as my grandmother taught me. I gave a jar to my father and after eating the first bite, tears began to roll down his face. When asked what the tears were for, he replied, “they taste just like my grandmother’s.”
With cooking, I can provide an experience. With one dish, I can take a man back to his childhood or a couple to their honeymoon. That experience is what I get out of my creative career path!
How can we best help foster a strong, supportive environment for artists and creatives?
In my opinion, society should put more emphasis on the creative arts in our public schools. In Texas, football is the only thing that school districts are willing to go way in the red for. Football and sports are great for students to participate in, but we should also apply resources for the more creative and artistic bunch!
Are there any books, videos, essays or other resources that have significantly impacted your management and entrepreneurial thinking and philosophy?
“How to win friends & influence people” by Dale Carnegie
“I dare you!” by William Danforth