ABOUT US

We are a social enterprise that uses barista skills training and wrap around services to fight recidivism. Our baristas learn hard and soft skills that will make them marketable to today's growing workforce needs. Through workforce development and mentor-ship we strive for sustained reentry and redeemed lives.

CONTACT 

Phone: (614) 569-4958 

info@coffeecraftersacademy.com

1561 Old Leonard Ave Columbus, OH 43219

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WHO WE ARE

Coffee Crafters Academy was born in 2013 out of a need to better serve those that have a prior criminal history. We are a social enterprise that operates cafes inside of correctional facilities across the state of Ohio. We train facility residents to become certified baristas that create a variety of artisan, handcrafted coffee, smoothie, and tea drinks to sell to other residents, staff and visitors. Our resident employees develop marketable skills and a positive work history that will help them obtain employment once released.

OUR MISSION
OUR VALUES
OUR VISION

Our mission is to aid in the reentry of justice involved individuals back into communities across the US via employment in the coffee industry.

Teamwork

Integrity

Professionalism

Humility

Positivity

Personal Growth

Service

Our vision is a world with more inclusive, supportive and forgiving communities that believe in the power of second chances. 

MEET OUR TEAM
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MICHELE REYNOLDS

Founder & CEO of Coffee Crafters Academy

Michele Reynolds has 20 years of professional experience in business and non-profit management. She holds a license as a Commercial Real Estate Agent in the State of Ohio. Her education includes a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Cincinnati, Master of Arts in Public Administration and Urban Studies from the University of Akron and Masters of Law from Thomas Jefferson School of Law. Michele is currently working on her doctoral dissertation toward a Doctorate in Business Administration from Northcentral University.

Her professional experience includes being the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Nothing Into Something Real Estate, Inc. (NISRE) - a faith based nonprofit organization that provides housing and supportive services to homeless adults and at risk youth. Founded in 2002, today, NISRE, Inc. is licensed and contracted by The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, U.S. District Courts, Ohio Department of Youth Services, and Ohio Department of Job and Family Services to operate supportive housing programs throughout the State of Ohio. Since its inception, NISRE, Inc. has housed approximately 1000 people through its restorative housing programs. NISRE, Inc. is the parent company of The EXIT (Ex-offenders In Transition) Program, Jessie’s World and Rahab’s Hideaway, Coffee Crafters and Yogopolis for which she serves as Chief Executive Officer.

Michele Reynolds is the wife of Pastor Uhleric (Rick) Reynolds and serves faithfully as the First Lady and Executive Pastor of Common Ground Destiny Center. Through their ministry, Michele and her husband launched a marketplace ministry called ‘The Destiny Center’- a faith based social enterprise incubator and event facility designed to support the needs of aspiring and established entrepreneurs with resources including office space, meeting space, business and life coaching, mentorship and business training. 

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MICHAEL CARLISLE

Director of Operations

For as long as he can remember Michael has loved to serve. Whether it was at his local church, as an athletic director, teacher, coach,  or barista, service has been the driving force behind what he does. His love for coffee, redemption and service has led him to Coffee Crafters Academy. As the CCA director, Michael looks to use the skills and techniques he has learned to assist the reentering individuals in our program and to enrich the communities they call home. 

Michael gained a Bachelors of Arts in Pastoral Studies from Greenville University. He uses his degree to serve as the Community Outreach Director of the Village Community Church.

He and his wife, Jamie Carlisle, live on the south side of Columbus with their son and two dogs.

OUR FEATURES
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THE NEW YORK TIMES
ARTICLE PUBLISHED DECEMBER 2019
 
"Incarceration is a dehumanizing experience. Working in a coffee shop helps the people inside remember how to interact in polite society. The for-profit work traditionally found in correctional facilities, like stamping license plates or making cheap clothing on an assembly line for 86 cents an hour, can’t do that. 'In some ways it’s just about restoring dignity. That’s really hard to do if you’re a robot on an assembly line with no windows working 10 hours a day,' said Nick Hirsch, director of the Coffee Crafters Academy, which operates barista classes in two Ohio prisons. 'But when you craft a drink, you have to have soft skills, customer interaction, that impacts your work.'”
BARISTA
MAGAZINE
ARTICLE PUBLISHED
OCTOBER 2017
"The [Coffee Crafters] Academy is thorough, demanding, and, yes, competitive: At time of press, 37 inmates were employed in the operation's cafes, and went through a rigorous hiring sequence before being given the proverbial keys to the shop."
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NBC4 WCHMH-TV
COLUMBUS NEWS
REPORT PUBLISHED APRIL 2017
"We just found that the coffee industry is one that we can leverage to teach them some of the more transferrable skills that they can use within any industry."
- Nick Hirsch, former Director of Coffee Crafters Academy
"Warden Jeffery Noble says about 70% of their inmates will eventually  return to society. 'The better trained they [released inmates] are, the better prepared they are to return to society they are, the less likely they are to come back.'"
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10TV WBNS
CENTRAL OHIO NEWS
REPORT PUBLISHED JULY 2016
"According to Warden Jason Bunting, the goal is to 'give them opportunities to have a sense of pride [and] an opportunity to have a sense of hope.' 
 
'You have to give them tangible skill sets, that not only applies to what we're doing inside the prison but when they get out to the community, what that looks like and transition with skill sets that honestly don't bring them back.'"