This is one of 12 finalists for the Herald Business Journal’s Emerging Leaders award, which seeks to highlight and celebrate people who are doing good work in Snohomish County. The winner will be named at an event on April 11. Meet the other finalists.
Name: Maxwell Mooney
Profession: Co-owner, Narrative Coffee in Everett
The Latin root of the word hospitality is “hostis,” which means stranger, explains Maxwell Mooney.
Hospitality has the potential to turn a stranger into a friend, he said.
“One of the best ways to do that is to share food or a beverage,” Mooney said.
It’s been true across many cultures for thousands of years — “recognizing someone’s humanity by sharing a meal with them,” he said.
That credo has served Mooney well as co-owner of Narrative Coffee in Everett and in his efforts to serve the community.
A nationally ranked barista, Mooney opened Narrative Coffee in downtown Everett in 2017 with the twin goals of serving the best coffee and creating a welcoming space.
“I wanted to create a world-class coffee bar,” he said.
Narrative won the 2017 “Best New Cafe” award from Sprudge.com, an online coffee blog that solicits nominations from around the world.
Competition for the annual award included coffee bars in Seattle, Vancouver, Ireland, Korea and New Zealand.
“We try hard to welcome everyone in, and try to make people feel welcome across all price points,” Mooney said.
That includes operating an honor bar.
“It’s $2 for a cup of coffee, but we don’t enforce it,” he said.
With business humming, Mooney last year joined the Downtown Everett Association’s inaugural board of directors.
He is chairman of the Economic Development Committee, one of five committees within the association.
“The team that I’ve had the honor of encouraging and leading has been made up of folks from multiple backgrounds: from the Economic Director for the City of Everett, to a lawyer, to an arts community advocate, to a prominent member of a local toy manufacturer with a global reach,” he wrote in his nomination statement.
Said Mooney, “It’s been a really cool experience to be in the same room with like-minded people who believe in Everett and want to see it grow.”
Narrative participates in the annual Toys for Tots drive and donates coffee to the Everett Gospel Mission. Mooney raises money for the Pregnancy Resource Center of Snohomish County.
Mooney has called Snohomish County home since 2010.
“This is the longest I’ve lived anywhere,” he said.
Growing up, his family moved 23 times.
“My biggest hope is that Snohomish County will find its own identity,” Mooney said. “There’s a lot we have to offer here. I’d like to see more people step into their identity as Snohomish County folks.”
Janice Podsada; firstname.lastname@example.org; 425-339-3097; Twitter: JanicePods