bake - May 2015 - 20

the scenic route
to success
Millennial baker Katy Nelson personifies the
values of strong leadership and hard work.
BY JOHN UNREIN
PHOTOGRAPHY BY KEVIN RUSSO
Above: Scenic

From the innocent age of 15, Katy Nelson knew she

In the 12 years since winning the Iowa Egg Council

Route Bakery

was different. Sure, the Iowa native had big dreams

cooking contest at age 15 (a pivotal event that pushed

is making a big

like anyone else. She wanted to run her own business,

her toward a culinary career), Nelson polished off

splash as the hot-

be strong and independent, and make her parents

two culinary degrees (including the heralded French

test new bakery

proud. Only Nelson didn't speak about her dreams

Pastry School in Chicago), studied pastry in northern

in Des Moines.

out loud. Maybe it would cheapen lofty goals if the

France, worked as a Marriott pastry chef in Chicago,

words rang out for anyone else to hear. Perhaps

and managed kitchen operations for a four-store

people around her would chalk it up to youthful

bakery café in Seattle.

naiveté. "You don't have a clue what it takes," they
might say in a dismissive tone. So silence became

Then two years ago Nelson decided it was time to

her ally. Rather, she'd devote herself to putting in the

come home to open a bakery. Her mother, Stephanie,

hours and the training and laying the groundwork for

had just retired from a successful career as a doctor

a successful career in baking and pastry. She'd keep

of obstetrics. Her father, Mark, an entrepreneur in

her mouth shut and let her results do the talking.

facilities management, was ready and willing to
provide whatever necessary for his daughter. "He's

For any bakery owner who worries the millennial

my business partner," Katy Nelson says. "I'm the

generation doesn't have the right stuff to make it

primary owner. I'm very blessed. None of this would

in this business, which requires grueling hours and

be possible without my family." And yet as anyone

relentless dedication, one only need to look at the

who grows up in a family business understands, it is

example set by Katy Nelson and rest easy. "I don't

ultimately up to the child to be or not be a success.

know how people work just 40 hours a week," says

"Even in high school, I had two jobs and a paper

the 27-year-old owner of Scenic Route Bakery in Des

route," Nelson says with a grin. "I have a lot of

Moines. "What do they do with all that extra time?"

energy."

20 < MAY 2015 | bakemag.com


http://www.bakemag.com

bake - May 2015

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of bake - May 2015

bake - May 2015
Editor's Note - A Need for Transparency
Table of Contents
News Bites - Bakers set sights on gold medal at iba
Alternative pizza formats
AIB certification enhances website
My Favorite Things
Management - Prevention
Labor Front - FSMA Moves Forward
Ingredients - Blueberry Challenge
Equipment - The Science of Fermentation
The Scenic Route to Success
A Buying Environment
What's Your Sign
Heirloom in Bloom
Bagel Popularity
Donut Craze Continues
Storytelling with Sweets
Easy, frozen, gourmet
Cafe - Sandwich Delivery
Products
Product Showcase
Classifieds
Ad Index
Online - BakeMag.com
bake - May 2015 - BB1
bake - May 2015 - BB2
bake - May 2015 - bake - May 2015
bake - May 2015 - 2
bake - May 2015 - Editor's Note - A Need for Transparency
bake - May 2015 - 4
bake - May 2015 - 5
bake - May 2015 - Table of Contents
bake - May 2015 - AIB certification enhances website
bake - May 2015 - My Favorite Things
bake - May 2015 - 9
bake - May 2015 - Management - Prevention
bake - May 2015 - 11
bake - May 2015 - Labor Front - FSMA Moves Forward
bake - May 2015 - 13
bake - May 2015 - Ingredients - Blueberry Challenge
bake - May 2015 - 15
bake - May 2015 - 16
bake - May 2015 - 17
bake - May 2015 - Equipment - The Science of Fermentation
bake - May 2015 - 19
bake - May 2015 - The Scenic Route to Success
bake - May 2015 - 21
bake - May 2015 - 22
bake - May 2015 - 23
bake - May 2015 - 24
bake - May 2015 - 25
bake - May 2015 - 26
bake - May 2015 - 27
bake - May 2015 - 28
bake - May 2015 - 29
bake - May 2015 - A Buying Environment
bake - May 2015 - 31
bake - May 2015 - 32
bake - May 2015 - 33
bake - May 2015 - What's Your Sign
bake - May 2015 - 35
bake - May 2015 - 36
bake - May 2015 - 37
bake - May 2015 - Heirloom in Bloom
bake - May 2015 - 39
bake - May 2015 - Bagel Popularity
bake - May 2015 - 41
bake - May 2015 - Donut Craze Continues
bake - May 2015 - 43
bake - May 2015 - Storytelling with Sweets
bake - May 2015 - 45
bake - May 2015 - Easy, frozen, gourmet
bake - May 2015 - 47
bake - May 2015 - Cafe - Sandwich Delivery
bake - May 2015 - 49
bake - May 2015 - 50
bake - May 2015 - 51
bake - May 2015 - Products
bake - May 2015 - Product Showcase
bake - May 2015 - Classifieds
bake - May 2015 - 55
bake - May 2015 - 56
bake - May 2015 - Ad Index
bake - May 2015 - Online - BakeMag.com
bake - May 2015 - 59
bake - May 2015 - 60
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