New Jersey is home to many ambitious and talented women who juggle family, career, and home. A select few of these women are also extremely busy building their own companies to help better manage the balance of work and family. At NJMOM, we want to highlight these extraordinary women who build businesses in New Jersey, and learn the secret to their success.
Owner of Donut Revolution & NJMOMpreneur:
Tiffany Pesyna‘s culinary expertise comes from a career in food service – but her professional journey did not follow the traditional route of a restaurant worker. With an impressive background in corporate food service management, Tiffany has served her community members of all ages through her work with Senior Dining at various facilities, students at West Chester University, and every age in between. Always a passionate baker with a fierce “sweet tooth,” Tiffany left her corporate career to open up shop as Donut Revolution Barrington, New Jersey to provide donut-lovers of all ages with made-to-order treats with fresh, real ingredients. Whether she’s drizzling toppings onto a warm donut for a wide-eyed child, consulting with a bride for a customized donut station, or helping older customers explore new and exciting flavors, Tiffany has embraced the life of an NJMOMpreneur with grace. NJMOM was able to learn more about this must-visit South Jersey donut haven, how Tiffany made the leap to start her own business, and her own family’s
NJMOM: What do you offer to your clients and how is it different than other professionals in your field?
Tiffany: We are “your favorite donut experience.” At Donut Revolution, we offer fresh, delicious donuts, crafted with fresh, quality ingredients, made completely from scratch and dipped, topped, and drizzled in an endless amount of ways. We source ingredients as locally as possible and each donut is individually hand-crafted for a truly custom treat. Our emphasis is on the fresh, local, craft experience – you won’t find anything made from a mix or frozen or filled unnecessarily with weird chemicals or crazy preservatives. We’re fresh and exciting and tailored specifically to you. It’s that from-scratch, high quality, fun customization that puts us above the others. Additionally, we take that same fresh, local, craft mentality and create truly customized catering options for a variety of events: weddings, birthdays, corporate meetings, office parties, showers, etc.
NJMOM: What inspired you to start your business?
Tiffany: I’ve been in food service and food service management since I was a teenager. Spreading joy through food – delighting people, surprising customers with over-the-top experiences, elevating someone’s day through the simple perfection of a delicious meal or amazing treat – has always been a passion of mine. It’s infectious! We all need food, but eating well and eating with total enjoyment is truly part of the richness of life.
Is there anything more awesome than a donut?
I spent years in Senior Dining at amazing retirement communities with Compass Group and then switched over to Aramark as the Food Service Director at West Chester University, spending my time with the opposite end of the age spectrum. For as many differences in lifestyle and interests, the love of food is universal. And the need for variety and fun translate through all generations and backgrounds. As someone with a major sweet tooth and who has always had a passion for baking and sharing, I realized it was time to combine my business background with my love of from-scratch delights and to really challenge myself. I wanted an opportunity that would allow me to really live my vision while spending time with my family and creating the type of sweet adventure that others could share in. Leaving the corporate world of food service management to embark on my own craft culinary journey has been nothing short of a life’s dream!
NJMOM: What is your favorite part about your business?
Tiffany: Without question, my favorite part is getting to share the enthusiasm and pleasure I experience with fellow donut-lovers. There is nothing quite so satisfying as watching the joy a child gets as you craft a donut just the way they wanted. “Extra everything? You got it!” Or seeing a grown man realize what a fantastic taste explosion sriracha chocolate, caramel, and bacon is, or helping a bride-to-be create a custom, uniquely-theirs donut dessert table for her wedding day. It’s exhilarating! And what’s even more exciting is how much my team here gets it. I’m fortunate to have a small staff of really awesome people who delight in delighting the customer equally as much. We have so much fun!
NJMOM: What is your background in your business expertise?
Tiffany: I’ve been in food service management for almost two decades and I’ve been baking since I was a teenager and I’ve been a full-fledged dessert lover since as long as I can remember. I’ve worked in a variety of corporate food and guest service organizations. I spent a significant portion of my career with Compass Group in upscale retirement communities as the Assistant Director and District Training and Retail Coordinator and the past few years with Aramark at West Chester University, where I operated as the Food Service Director of the Residential program and three Retail outlets. I have always eagerly embraced new challenges and opportunities, so combining my love of donuts with my passion for operations and retail was only natural. I’m thrilled to be able to utilize my years of business, management, and training experience on my donut adventure.
NJMOM: What are you most proud of in your career?
Tiffany: Hands down, my proudest achievement is always the growth of the people on my teams. I have been blessed to have worked with some truly amazing people over the years. It’s been exciting to watch their skillsets expand and to see them take off and achieve. The evolution of a team is vital to the growth of an organization and I’ve fully enjoyed diverse opportunities to place the right people together to grow together. With any company, you want to be certain you’re nailing your metrics and achieving all your goals. But what those results really make me ask myself is, “Am I running an effective team? Are we aligned and ready to perform?” The right people working towards common goals can do amazing things! I am excited for my awesome donut team that I have now, most of whom I’ve known for years or had the pleasure of working with before.
It’s so important to have people who are as invested in the company vision and really exceeding the customer experience, and I definitely have those people with me.
It’s been a rather large switch from overseeing a team of hundreds of associates and a dozen managers serving thousands of daily customers to now working with a much smaller team covering much less square footage. But, the level of innovation and focus is of the same happy intensity and I’m excited for the things we’re accomplishing.
NJMOM: What is something few people know about you?
Tiffany: I’m a big beer nerd. IPAs have my heart. And, while I’m a terrible singer, I love a good night of karaoke, especially when the other fact had happened first!
NJMOM: What can we expect from you for the rest of 2017?
Tiffany: The end of 2017 is all about furthering our position here. We’ve been catering in South Jersey for the past year, but we only recently found our storefront presence in Barrington. So, the focus is on reaching out and further spreading the donut love. We’re looking forward to bringing customers the type of donut experience they really deserve and in expanding the catering side of our business. There’s a lot of unexpected ways to bring donuts to the table, so to speak, and we’re excited to be able to introduce them to our clients.
NJMOM: What charities are you most passionate about?
Tiffany: As a thyroid cancer survivor, I’m a huge fan of ThyCa and the work that they do. With 56,000 new cases anticipated every year, it’s important to shine some light on this endocrine cancer and aim for early detection. My family and I are also huge fans of The Unforgotten Haven in Blackwood, New Jersey. They do amazing outreach work! We’re trying to help their mission in a small way by hosting a Winter Coat Drive with our Donuts for Donations program at our shop. In the month of November, you bring in a new or gently used coat and we give you a donut of your choosing. Can giving be any sweeter? Pun definitely intended! So far, even a couple of weeks in, we’ve been blessed by so many fabulously generous customers.
NJMOM: Who is your role model?
Tiffany: My oldest sister, Debrah, is my role model. She is one of the most enthusiastic, selfless people I know. She’s been that way since we were kids and, as the oldest, was always automatic babysitter to the rest of us. Her creativity, huge heart, and persevering spirit were always a model for good living to me.
NJMOM: What is the best piece of advice your mom ever gave to you?
Tiffany: My mother has always said, “if you’re happy digging a ditch, go dig a ditch!” As funny as that sounds, what she meant was: find the thing that makes you happy, that brings you joy, and go do that thing. The rest will fall into place. Life is too short too feel unfulfilled.
NJMOM: Do you have a favorite quote you live by?
Tiffany: This is going to sound like a very odd quote and quote source, but a great many years ago, I watched a documentary (“Freakanomics,” I think) where a kid said “I can promise you milk and cookies, but if the oven’s broke, you’re just getting milk!” This is good solid advice to stay grounded. Anything can be promised, but you better have the plan and the tools and, most importantly, the execution behind it. Nobody wants to be left with a tall glass of milk and no sweet treat.
NJMOM: What are your favorite things to do in New Jersey with your family?
Tiffany: We love being outdoors! I thoroughly enjoy that we in New Jersey get four full seasons. We like to celebrate them all. Fall is, by far, our favorite, and always includes pumpkin picking and the corn maze at Duffield’s Farm Market and the Salem County Pumpkin Show. We hit up the 4H Fair whenever it’s in town. Being born and raised in South Jersey, we take summer trips down the shore (Ocean City and Cape May are favorites) and, as previously mentioned, my husband and I love to hit up Jersey’s many craft breweries.
NJMOM: What is the best part about being a mom for you?
Tiffany: The best and hardest part of being a Mom is all wrapped into one: watching my babies grow. It’s crazy how fast it all goes by. My oldest, Abigail, is 13 years old and I swear she was born a few minutes ago. My son, Jonathan, is 11 and in middle school and I’m forever trying to figure out how that happened! And my “baby,” Lily, is now a big eight. It’s exciting and scary to watch them bloom into full, real-life people right before your eyes. All three have totally different personalities and goals and ways of doing things. And all three are awesome in their own ways. There’s a real sense of “hey, you’re a cool human and I’m glad to know you!” It’s a great feeling. I’m so proud to be their mom.
NJMOM: What are your favorite businesses in New Jersey?
Tiffany: I have so many favorites! We are all about shopping local. We love Dippy’s in Mantua for ice cream (it’s been a tradition since I was two!). We also love Duffield’s and Mood’s Farm Market for fun produce picking, Carolina Blue in Pitman (where my husband and I had our first date and, eventually, our wedding celebration party), Blue Monkey Tavern in Merchantville for good food and craft beer, and Lil Art House in Pitman for fun paint nights. Crescent Moon Coffee and Tea in Mullica Hill is not only an awesome coffee house, but also the roaster we use at Donut Revolution. And I can’t forget a bunch of our favorite New Jersey breweries: Eight & Sand, Lunacy, Eclipse Brewing, Cape May Brewering Company, Kane Brewing Company, and Kelly Green Brewing Company. I’m sure I’m forgetting tons of awesome places; we love to support local businesses and Jersey is filled with lots of great ones!
NJMOM: Where do you reside and vacation in Jersey?
Tiffany: We live in Swedesboro. We adore the small town atmosphere combined with the still-rural feel of it. There are great shops and the town is very kid-and-neighborhood friendly. I love that I can send my kids outside to play and they can go have fun, meet friends, explore, and still be safe and happy. We are huge “staycation-ers.” I’m all about the day trips! Jaunts to the shore to hit the boardwalk or take a dolphin-seeing boat ride, or a walk in the woods at Whitesbog or Batsto Village so we can explore nature and play, or a visit to off-the-beaten-path museums like the Naval Air Station Musuem in Wildwood (a must see!), night time trips to the library and then for ice cream; we’re great at finding fun things to do, and South Jersey makes that really easy.
NJMOM: What advice might you have for a fellow NJMOMpreneur who is just starting out?
Tiffany: Don’t give up! You have no idea yet what unexpected, wacky obstacles are going to be put in your path. Just know that they’re coming. Realize that the fact you were crazy enough to start your own business means you’re also courageous and awesome enough to face whatever curve balls are thrown at you. Above all, breathe deep and treat yourself well. We suggest having a donut or two.
NJMOM: Anything else you’d like to tell moms in New Jersey?
Tiffany: Buy donuts! Visit us in Barrington. We’d love to meet you and swap mom-ming stories over coffee and awesome donuts.