Brigitte Franyo deftly balances a heaping helping of responsibility

Snowdrift Cafe’s Brigitte Franyo is a 2018 Influential Woman In Business

(L to R) Amie Lubbers, sales co-ordinator for Kootenay Business magazine, presents one of three Influential Women In Business awards to Brigitte Franyo, owner/operator of the Snowdrift Cafe in Kimberley.

(L to R) Amie Lubbers, sales co-ordinator for Kootenay Business magazine, presents one of three Influential Women In Business awards to Brigitte Franyo, owner/operator of the Snowdrift Cafe in Kimberley. — Kyle Born photo

Brigitte Franyo, owner/operator of the Snowdrift Cafe in Kimberley, has been recognized by Kootenay Business magazine as an Influential Woman In Business (IWIB) award winner at the IWIB luncheon at the Prestige Rocky Mountain Resort in Cranbrook on May 2, 2018.

Starting a business can be overwhelming—akin to jumping over hurdles while juggling and answering skill-testing questions. This is the sort of scenario Franyo faces when she tackles all of her responsibilities at the Snowdrift Cafe.

“I do most of the baking and cooking, make sure the best coffees are provided, order food, cups, lids, run around to the grocery stores to get the best prices on fresh produce and dairy, make sure the equipment is running properly (four refrigerators, three freezers, two ovens, espresso machine, dishwasher) and payroll!” said Franyo.

If that sounds taxing, it absolutely is, especially when things go wrong. “In the first summer I had the cafe, only a few months into my adventure, one of my refrigerators broke down,” Franyo said. “I had to throw out so much product: pails of mayonnaise, trays of lasagna and spanakopita, and all the sandwich and salad fixings. I sat on the floor and cried. Oh no! How were we going to get through this busy day? What am I going to do? What have I got myself into? Things like this were very new for me.”

Franyo was able to find someone to fix the fridge and have things running normally again after a few inconvenient days. “I try to tell myself to take a deep breath and move forward,” she said.

Aside from her hectic work schedule at the Snowdrift Cafe, Franyo sits on the board of directors for the Kimberley and District Community Foundation and is very active as an actor in Kimberley’s community theatre.

“Don't be afraid to take chances,” she said. “Look at yourself in the mirror and tell yourself how strong you are. You hold the power.”

Congratulations to Brigitte Franyo for winning an Influential Woman In Business award.

Kyle Born

Kyle Born is a writer for Kootenay Business and his initials match that of the magazine—it must be fate that brought them together. View all of Kyle Born’s articles

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