Our visionaries have not only shaped the direction of Doi Chaang Coffee Company, but they have also transformed the lives of Doi Chang coffee growers.
Founders of Doi Chaang Coffee Original Company, Ltd., Chiang Rai Province, Thailand
Piko Saedoo – Founding Father Doi Chaang Coffee Original Company
Piko is the head of the Akha community’s largest and most prominent family. In 1983, when his majesty King Bhumibol began the Royal Initiatives to encourage crop substitutions to eliminate opium cultivation and slash-and-burn horticulture, Piko and his family were the first to start cultivating coffee. As the village head, he encouraged his fellow villagers to follow the King’s directive and join him in the cultivation of coffee. After 20 years of cultivating and processing beans, Piko decided it was time to roast and directly offer the coffee as a single-estate Arabica.
Piko is a kind, hard-working man who is proud of the Akha heritage, the community and the Akha’s success as independent coffee producers. The Doi Chang community respects the dedication and leadership of Piko and honours him by featuring his image within the Doi Chaang Coffee logo.
Wicha Promyong – President, Doi Chaang Coffee Original Company
Wicha spent many years as a successful businessman in Thailand and travelled extensively overseas before joining the Doi Chaang community. He has helped many Northern Thailand hill tribes in their struggle for equality and acceptance. Piko asked Wicha for guidance in selling Doi Chaang Coffee and Wicha encouraged the villagers to unite and form an independent company to represent all of the Doi Chang farmers.
Wicha has not only been instrumental in Doi Chang’s development, but has also helped raise the standard of living and self-respect of the Akha people. He lives among the Doi Chang community as a well respected and trusted family member. He has come to embrace the Akha way and has dedicated his life to improving the well being of the Akha people and establishing Doi Chaang Coffee as the best coffee in the world.
Wicha is determined to see the Akha People fully recognized for their dedication and accomplishments.
Kornkranok Bunmusik (Sandra) – General Manager, Doi Chaang Coffee Original Company
Sandra helped introduce Doi Chaang coffee to the coffee drinkers of Thailand and other Asian countries. She is multilingual, Thai and North American educated and has extensive expertise in both the coffee business and international trade.
As the General Manager for Doi Chaang Coffee Original Company, she is responsible for administration, marketing and sales in Thailand. Her decision and belief in Doi Chaang as a single-estate coffee has resulted in a high demand for Doi Chaang Coffee from restaurants, hotels and coffees shops all over Asia. It was Sandra’s initiative that brought the Thai and Canadian teams together to introduce Doi Chaang to the international market.
Doi Chaang Coffee Company, Vancouver, Canada
John M. Darch – Co-Founder and Chairman, Doi Chaang Coffee Company
Following many years of commercial banking experience with major international banks in England and Canada, John established himself as a successful entrepreneur. Over a period of 25 years his vision, tenacity and financing expertise enabled him to secure several hundred million dollars for the development of significant and diversified natural resource projects throughout Europe, Africa and Asia.
As the past Chairman and CEO of a multinational, diversified mining company engaged in exploration, development and operations employing thousands, he has gained considerable experience in the areas of corporate management, project management and administration. In particular, John has had over 20 years business development experience in Thailand, where he was one of the founders of a world class potash project, for which over one hundred million dollars was raised.
His excellent reputation and close personal association with many senior Thai businessmen made him an obvious candidate to help lead Doi Chaang Coffee into the international market.
John A. Darch – President and CEO, Doi Chaang Coffee Company
Originally from Southern England, John Alexander Darch began his career in the world of finance in 1986 as the Controller for the Vancouver based Crew Group of Mining Companies before moving to the US in 1992 to join the US Bank Corp.
In 1995, creative instincts lead him to return to Canada to pursue his passion of photography. His subjects ranged from high profile celebrities to political leaders. John A.’s work has been noted in various widely-popular mainstream publications such as Rolling Stone Magazine and BC Business Magazine.
Following years of splitting work between London and Vancouver, shooting campaigns, annual reports and editorial assignments, John A. decided to return to the world of finance. For the past 6 years he has been the CFO for Vancouver based Western Investments Ltd., which holds significant international investments, including Doi Chaang Coffee Company.
As President and CEO of Doi Chaang Coffee Company, John A. is incorporating his life experience of innovation and mindset of core values for global sustainability and unique global business perspectives. With this he guides Doi Chaang Coffee with the mission statement of commitment to elevating the awareness and standards of coffee quality, going beyond fair trade and sustainable agriculture.
Tanya Jacoboni – Vice President of Business Development, Doi Chaang Coffee Company
Before working for Doi Chaang Coffee Tanya worked as a part time Customer Service Representative for the Royal Bank of Canada while attending school on a soccer scholarship. She went on to study Marketing Management at BCIT with an associates in Tourism Marketing.
Tanya started with the company in 2007 in a customer service role; after 5 years of learning the ins and outs of the company and the coffee market, she is now the Vice President of Business Development.
Danika Speight – CFO, Doi Chaang Coffee Company
A born and raised Vancouverite, Danika graduated from the Bachelor of Business Administration program at Simon Fraser University, with concentrations in Accounting and Human Resources. During her academic pursuits, she worked for four years as a baker and barista at a café in West Vancouver, where she first fell in love with coffee culture.
Before joining Doi Chaang Coffee, Danika worked at a Vancouver-based big-four accounting firm as an auditor in the assurance and advisory practice.
After only a brief period with the company, Danika has moved from a junior accountant to the CFO of Doi Chaang Coffee.
Anand Pawa – Vice President of Marketing, Doi Chaang Coffee Company
Anand was born in Thailand and spent his childhood in Bangkok before moving to Canada in his early teens. He attended Simon Fraser University where he pursued a degree in Communications with a minor in Publishing. Through the course of his education Anand also delved in environmental and sustainability studies, and realized his passion for sustainable business models.
Prior to joining Doi Chaang Coffee, Anand applied his academic background to a diverse set of organizations and brings with him a strong understanding of the marketing field.
As Vice President of Marketing, Anand takes pride in sharing the story of Doi Chaang Coffee Company and is always ready to get lost in the tales of the company’s humble beginnings.
Sanja Grcic – Sales and Merchandising, Doi Chaang Coffee Company
Sanja is the newest member of the Doi Chaang Coffee family. Growing up in Vancouver she has always had a passion for sustainability, the environment, ethics in business and striving to make a change for the better. Graduating from the Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia allowed her to hone the necessary business skills to pursue her passions. Engaging in and later leading the Commerce Community Program within Sauder inspired Sanja to pursue a career with Doi Chaang Coffee, in an organization that always goes above and beyond.
Focusing on Sales & Merchandising, Sanja brings years of marketing and sales experience, both in a corporate and entrepreneurial environment. She is excited to continue to learn about the coffee industry while seeing further success of Doi Chaang and the incredible impact this local Vancouver company is having directly on the lives of the people in the Doi Chang Village of Thailand.
Jacquelyn Kingston - Research and Development, Doi Chaang Coffee Company
With an industry that is frequently growing and changing, continuous research helps us to develop and produce the best product possible. Jacquelyn is eager to support any member of the Doi Chaang team who needs assistance in the office; she often works closely with Anand and also serves as Executive Assistant to John M.
With a strong desire for coffee and the story behind Doi Chaang, Jacquelyn is a key addition to the company.