Recently, the son of a chocolate maker decided to try a new approach to this most ancient chocolate drink.
Eric Durtschi grew up in a tiny town in rural Tennessee. His father worked for Russell Stover, America’s largest producer of boxed chocolates. Eric demonstrated a knack for inventing his own recipes at an early age, experimenting with the properties of cocoa powder and baking powder, investigated the differences between shortening and butter, seeing what role they played in making the finished product.
As he grew, his love for science took him to chiropractic school, where he learned about chemistry, physiology, nutrition and biology. One day, his passion for chocolate and science collided. "What if cocoa beans could be brewed just like coffee beans?" His investigation began immediately.
Eric began speaking with cocoa growers from all over the world, searching for the beans with the most complex and intense flavors. He tested all sorts of methods to roast and grind these cocoa beans until he came upon the perfect combination. It worked! The intense, complex flavors of the finest cocoa beans can be enjoyed when brewed into a healthy, delicious, chocolaty drink.
On 10/10/10, Crio Inc. was officially launched. Named after the finest and rarest cocoa bean – the Criollo – Crio Brü let’s you experience the drink of the gods. And then, like the kings and peoples of the great American civilizations, you too will find yourself enchanted by its unbelievable taste and energizing effect.
Chair of the Board
Cassandra Durtschi is Chair of the Board of Crio Inc., overseeing strategic operations for the company. Cassandra was the owner and operator of an event planning company in Palo Alto, CA, planning corporate events for Google, Yahoo! and Facebook, where she organized large teams, worked with various vendors and was responsible for all marketing and business operations. Cassandra attended Brigham Young University and later graduated with a B.S. in Psychology from San Francisco State University. She was frequently on the Dean’s List and was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, an educational honor society.
President & C.E.O.
As President and C.E.O., Jon manages Crio’s day-to-day operations, marketing, finances, and international distributors. Throughout his 15+ year entrepreneurial and corporate career, Jon has held various business development, sales, project management, marketing and leadership positions. He has managed large teams, multi-million dollar budgets and is known for consistently delivering results. Jon graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Utah.
V.P. of Business Development
Nick’s background centers on the health and wellness industry and international business development. He has assumed many roles with extreme entrepreneurial intensity; including administration of a multi-million dollar company, internet and social media marketing, international marketing, global supply chain formulation and management, and professional consulting. His formal education consists of a bachelor in science of economics and business administration with emphasis in accounting. Nick graduated from Excelsior College in Albany, NY, and his accounting emphasis was completed through Brigham Young University.
Calvin Bingham, CPA is Crio’s C.F.O., offering over 20 years of diversified corporate, subsidiary and division experience with public and private companies. Calvin was a founder and executive of a pharmaceutical services company. Under his stewardship, this company grew to $60M+ in annual revenues and was ultimately acquired by a major pharmaceutical conglomerate. Following the acquisition, Calvin managed the divisional operations at a $2.2B publicly traded pharmaceutical company. Calvin has an outstanding record of leadership and achievement through strategy formulation, institution of effective management, financial analysis and operational controls. Calvin earned a Doctorate of Pharmacy degree from the University of Nebraska and completed studies at Arizona State University to sit for the CPA Exam.
V.P. of Sales
Eric is Crio’s V.P. of Sales and is responsible for all of the company’s sales and prospecting efforts. In addition to excelling in sales throughout his career, he has followed his entrepreneurial ambitions, starting his own flight school in Cedar City, Utah, called Professional Flight Instruction. Eric was responsible for marketing and sales at PFI; each contract amounting to $60,000 to $80,000. He graduated from U.V.U. with a Bachelor Degree in Aviation Science in addition to two associate’s degrees.
Dr. Durtschi is Crio’s C.O.O. overseeing production and product development at Crio. He created Crio’s proprietary product lines – Crio Brü, Crio Espresso and Crio Beans – and develops its forthcoming product lines. Dr. Durtschi graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Human Biology from Missouri State University in 2002 and obtained a degree as a Doctor of Chiropractic from Cleveland Chiropractic College in 2005. His continuing education credits have focused on nutritional science.
Lori is an extremely talented and detail-oriented account manager, product manager and project manager, having worked on product launches and advertising campaigns for Fortune 500 companies. Lori helped to develop Crio's brand and website and is thrilled about Crio's stellar growth.
Tan H. Nguyen has 14+ years of proven success in the mobile industry, having increased wireless business by as much as 200% for his mobile operator clients. He recently developed and launched the Sprint Biz App Marketplace and started two, multi-million dollar mobile media companies. Collectively, both companies own and operate nine television channels on Sprint TV. Tan has also branched out to other industries, leveraging his experience to assist in the growth of start-ups in the entertainment, advertising and food/beverage verticals. Tan has a philanthropic purpose running the NuWin Foundation and is a proud graduate of James Madison University.
Early in his career, Kevin Cohen was responsible for operational management of a major department of United Artists, a feature film studio. Later, he managed several lines of operations and asset management during his 12 years with Turner Broadcasting. While overseas, Kevin oversaw distribution for Turner's largest network business in Asia and later returned to become Senior Vice President and General Manager, overseeing all Turner's M&A activity before leaving in early 2008 to co-found DoubleMan Group, an international advisory and services firm. Kevin Cohen Graduated Phi Beta Kappa and Summa Cum Laude from Bowdoin College in 1985, and received his MBA from Dartmouth's Tuck School of Business in 1996.