Wolfpack

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC co-founder Taylor Collins

    Taylor Collins

    Co-founder

    Taylor hails from Austin, TX and has an extensive background in both the food industry and health care. More importantly he is a master of doing epic things. His love of the outdoors embodies the spirit of EPIC. When not working, Taylor is often found trail running deep in the Barton Creek Greenbelt or looking for buffalo to befriend. Taylor is both a competitive runner and triathlete with many top podium finishes. He is no stranger to "running with the buffalo spirit" and finds bliss in pushing his body to its limits.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Staring deep into the eyes of a wild mountain lion on a week long camping trip in West Texas.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC co-founder Katie Forrest

    KATIE FORREST

    CO-FOUNDER

    Katie is a native Austinite with a Masters Degree in Women's and Gender Studies. She is a proven entrepreneur with the instincts of an Alaskan Gray. In addition to her powerful senses, she is a ferocious multisport athlete with big wins at Ironman Wisconsin and top finishes at many bike races. Her warrior spirit drives the EPIC team to setting goals and working hard to crush them. When out of the office Katie is often spotted on isolated country roads riding her bike and looking for hawks to tame.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Hiking the final 800 meters to summit Kilimanjaro at 4am (with 70 mph winds at -20 degrees F) while having hallucinations of a pink foam encapsulating the mountain.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC COO/CFO Robby Samson

    ROBBY SANSOM

    CFO/COO

    Robby was born and raised in the sacred motherland of Austin, TX and received both a BBA and an MPA from the University Of Texas. Following school he went to work in the semiconductor industry before working in accounting services. He then returned to industry work in the information products arena where, as a finance and operations executive, he crashed multiple Apple computers building complicated spreadsheets. As a result of his purebred bloodline and passion for betterment, he has also volunteered on several local non-profit boards. When he’s not making spreadsheets or giving back to the community he is found on a trail, mountain, rock wall, field, or body of water somewhere here on earth.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Camping under star filled skies by night and navigating the 280 miles of Colorado River piercing through the Grand Canyon by day.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC product sales manager Kristin O'connell

    Kristin O'Connell

    Product Sales Manager

    Hailing from the frozen tundra (a.k.a. Minnesota), Kristin followed in the path of Fievel and went west after high school in search of warmer weather and big blue skies. Her path brought her to Arizona State University, where she majored in anthropology and French, learning about our prehistoric human history and attempting to capture that certain “je ne sais quoi” the French possess. When she’s not enjoying the food, weather, and scenery of her home base in San Francisco, she’s traveling to inspiring places around the world and flexing her creative muscles by documenting her experiences on her travel blog. To capture some zen in her life, she enjoys yoga, running, and hanging out with her husband and two pet rabbits.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Backpacking the Trans Catalina Trail, a 32-mile hike with 9,600 ft of elevation change in three days (the result of which was losing six toenails).

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC regional sales manager Ryen Jacobson

    Ryen Jacobson

    Regional Sales Manager - Grocery

    Ryen was born and raised in Minnesota and earned a degree in marketing management from the University of St. Thomas in St.Paul. A diehard Minnesota sports fan, Ryen continuously amazes his wife with his talent for finding a sporting event to watch on TV every night of the week. He has a passion for the community and is currently serving as a board member for a local PTSD charity. When he is not working, volunteering, or watching sports, you can find Ryen fishing on new lakes, hiking in the north woods, sneaking in a round of golf, or attempting a new DIY house project. Ryen has never worked in any field besides sales and possesses an unnatural ability to stay positive (even when his name is repeatedly spelled incorrectly).

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Walking the Ho Chi Minh trail, hiking the Ma Da Jungle Valley on supply routes used during the Vietnam War, and exploring the Tra Ang Cave by swimming with a headlight for navigation.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC regional sales manager Steph Tomczyk

    Steph Tomczyk

    Regional Sales Manager - Natural Channel

    Steph grew up in the Bold North (Minneapolis, Minnesota) and later graduated from the University of Minnesota. In need of warmth, she headed southwest to Arizona and dove straight into the food industry. Although she’s back living in the tundra now, her desire to experience new cultures coupled with her adventurous nature keeps her traveling. She’s crossed the border of 21 different countries, and she’s always itching for the next big adventure. When she’s not traveling the U.S. spreading our EPIC mission, you can find her rock climbing, running trails, playing sand volleyball, snowboarding, or pitching a tent for camping. If it’s outdoors or some type of competition, Steph is there. When she is at home, you’ll likely find her in the kitchen cooking or brewing homemade kombucha.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    115 Swiss Alp miles trekked around Mont Blanc, eight mountains summitted, three country borders crossed, and a backpack, tent, broken boot, sister, and mother nature for eight days. 

  • Monika Spalinski

    Regional Sales Manager - Grocery East

    Monika grew up in the “Windy City” of Chicago, before the wind blew her one state over to Indiana where she attended and graduated from the University of Notre Dame. She then continued her stint in the Midwest in Ohio where she began her sales career with General Mills, but has since adventured eastward to her most recent home in Philadelphia. When it’s not a fall football Saturday where she’s cheering on the Irish, you’ll find Monika somewhere outdoors- skiing, hiking, biking or playing tennis. Growing up bilingual and now speaking 5 languages, she also has a passion for travel and learning about different cultures and ways of life. Monika is always up for new adventures- especially when it comes to food and sampling new cuisines from around the world!

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Spending a week skiing through the uncharted back hills wilderness of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC Marketing Manager Eric Le

    Eric Le

    Marketing & Meatcasting

    Eric, a Longhorn alum, resides sweatily in Houston where he grew up. Eric's years of experience in the food industry are rivaled only by his hours of experience as a wedding emcee. Off the wedding circuit, Eric can be found hiking (read: walking) all those trails the EPIC team runs  He's also an avid crossfitter, climber, snowboarder and swimmer. He's endlessly seeking ways to push himself both mentally and physically, rarely allowing himself to master any single thing. In a previous life, Eric was a street monkey roaming the alleys of Agrabah with a humble peasant and a blue genie.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Challenging Canadian sovereignty as we paddled & portaged 30 miles through the remote Boundary Waters straddling the US/Canadian border.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC creative lead Andrea Romero

    Andrea Romero

    Creative Lead

    A native from San Salvador, El Salvador, Andrea subscribes to Teddy Roosevelt's motto: "Speak softly, and carry a big stick." Never the first to speak but always quick to act, shes an accomplished designer and photographer who embraces every challenge that comes her way. Since starting at EPIC as a college graphic design intern, she has received her degree and become the company's creative lead. When she's not creating new designs or snapping photos, she's hiking  with her Boston Terrier, Lucy.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Camping through a raging monsoon while her tent was attacked by a herd of wild goats in Kingsville, Texas.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC marketing communications lead Hope Zeckmeister

    Hope Zeckmeister

    Marketing Communications Lead

    Hope was born and raised in the suburbs of Milwaukee, Wisconsin and grew up destined to be a badger. After fulfilling her destiny by attending the University of Wisconsin, she moved to Minneapolis and eventually made her way to Austin. Her passion for food began at a young age by turning science projects into cooking projects and hosting at-home “cooking shows” and has grown over her time working in the food industry. Hope thrives in tackling the unknown, whether that be a new HIIT class or traveling to countries by herself. When she’s not off traveling, you can find Hope at home cooking or getting her bearings in Austin.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Diving into a cage surrounded by sharks alongside marine biologists in Cape Town, South Africa

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC marketing associate Emily Scott

    Emily Scott

    Marketing Associate

    Emily hails from a small Texas town—so small, most of her fellow Texans haven’t heard of it. Her “wild and free” spirit eventually led her to Austin, where she found a home amongst the rabid wolfpack she now calls family. A film acting student and character on the local comedy scene, Emily is passionate about the environment, enjoys finding new ways to recycle, and loves to expand her knowledge of health and nutrition. When she’s not telling bad jokes at EPIC HQ, she can be found with her dog, doing yoga, doing yoga with her dog, or listening to an obscene amount of 90’s pop music.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Hiking on Mount Hood and "glamping" on the Columbia River. There may or may not have been a Sasquatch sighting.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC marketing logistics support associate Cory Robertson

    Cory Robertson

    Marketing Logistics Support

    Born and raised in Victoria, Texas, Cory spent his early years on large amounts of land surrounded by animals and nature. This gave him a close connection with and love for animals and the outdoors at any early age. After high school, he migrated to Austin, where he spent several years in the food industry as a swiss army knife. Since then, he earned his BA in graphic & web design from the Art Institute of Austin. Nowadays, Cory works hard to ensure the continued success of the EPIC brand and is growing rapidly in his immersive role in the company. On a Saturday or Sunday afternoon, Cory can be found running around the trails of Austin, soaking up the sun at a baseball game, or at the park with his girlfriend and dog.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Snorkeling around the Astron shipwreck in the Caribbean Sea off the coast of Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, with sharks circling below.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC brand journalist Liz Harroun

    Liz Harroun

    Brand Journalist

    Born and raised in Dallas, Liz got to Austin as soon as she could by attending the University of Texas. After graduating with degrees in business and Spanish, she navigated the corporate finance world for a couple of years before exploring her creative side in the outdoor and wellness industries. Since her biggest passions have always been the environment and nutrition, Liz officially landed her dream job when she started writing for EPIC. Outside of the office, you’ll find her daydreaming in her garden, teaching yoga at local climbing gyms, and riding her bike to Barton Springs.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    A summer spent traveling solo in South America at age 20, which included volunteering in cities, working on farms, and even a last-minute adventure to the Galapagos Islands!

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC head of non-protein purchasing Kara Griffin

    Kara Griffin

    Head of Non-Protein Purchasing

    Making her debut in Fort Walton Beach, Florida, Kara has moved numerous times to mulitple states before calling Austin her home. Traveling still remains her most favorite hobby, along with sports, drawing and music. A former collegiate basketball player, Kara continues her love of the sport by coaching youth teams and cheering on the McNeil Maverick's. She is currently a member of The Junior League of Austin and attends local Great Dane Meetups with her "little" Dane, Madea. Kara's passion of health, animals and the community made being a part of EPIC a perfect fit. 

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Daring a horseback ride on the edge of a mountain in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Apparently "trot" in Spanish translates to a Kentucky Derby race and "ALTO" does not flow off the tongue when holding on for dear life! 

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC supply chain manager Rebecca Linz

    Rebecca Linz

    Supply Chain Manager

    Raised in Minnesota, Rebecca developed a love for the outdoors at a young age. When she was growing up, her family was often found camping, fishing, and hiking in the many beautiful Minnesota State Parks and the magnificent Colorado Rocky Mountains. Rebecca has spent her professional years in the consumer electronics and food industries. When she's not working she can be found exploring the many things to do, see, and eat spending time with friends and family; cheering for her beloved Minnesota Twins; or hanging out on a paddle board or boat on the lake at her family cabin.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Picking up my entire life and moving across the country (with a couple of weeks’ notice) to work on a brand that’s changing the world.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC assistant logistics manager Chris Wolf

    Chris Wolf

    Assistant Logistics Manager

    Chris is a Minnesota native who went to Iowa State University to major in industrial engineering as well as get his MBA. After graduating, he began his six-year career in supply chain at General Mills. He spends his summers on the lakes of Minnesota and his winters snowboarding in Colorado. He also enjoys reading, running, hiking, golfing, and spending time with his wife Brittany and dog Piper. Chris is a die-hard Minnesota Vikings fan and tries to get to a game whenever he can.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Hiking to 13,500 feet in Colorado and backcountry snowboarding through snow that was five-feet deep! They spent the night in a remote cabin near the tree line then hiked down to the mountain the next morning, before hitchhiking back to their cars.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC supply chain brand planner Ashley Phillips

    Ashley Phillips

    Supply Chain Brand Planner

    Ashley hails from the GREAT city of Waco, Texas! Yep, you named it, the infamous home of the cult leader David Koresh or on the brighter side HGTV’s Fixer Upper show. Ashley moved to Austin long ago, in her eyes, to attend the University of Texas majoring in Supply Chain and previously worked in electronic manufacturing with a focus on production / demand planning. Outside of the wolfpack den you can find Ashley enjoying the EPIC adventures Austin offers, or teaching one of her dearest HIIT classes. Although her favorite is running the trails of Lady Bird Lake and paddling up Barton Springs, Ashley loves to try various Tex-Mex restuarants. You can say she is indeed a connoisseur of fine cuisine.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Hiking through El Yunque’s mountainous, yet cool and tropical rainforest in northeastern Puerto Rico. We definitely reached the top only to discover a foggy city view. Don’t go chasing waterfalls! It was a jungle out there!

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC ITQ manager Kim Gessner

    Kim Gessner

    ITQ Manager

    While her heart will always be in Minnesota, Kim’s nomadic lifestyle allows her to thrive ANYWHERE. Since graduating, she has lived in three countries and nine different cities! Her free spirit and incredible adaptability sets Kim apart from her peers. She wakes up everyday, ready to crush life. Kim recently set her compass towards EPIC and has fully accepted the challenge of keeping’ it weird here in Austin. When she is not traveling, packing or unpacking, Kim can be found hiking, playing volleyball, exploring the local food scene or just working her way down the long list of amazing things to do and see here in Austin.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Hiking 35 miles in one day through the Spanish mountains and wilderness with friends and strangers during Javierada.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC QRO product manager Senthil Krishnamurthy

    Senthil KRISHNAMURTHY

    QRO Product Manager

    Senthil was born in Dallas, TX but moved to Chicago at an early age.  He attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for Industrial Engineering and minored in Business. After graduating from school he joined General Mills. During his 5 years in Minneapolis, Senthil became interested in strength and conditioning, movement, and eating well. Naturally he evolved to becoming a champion Crossfit athlete as well as a yogi, rock climber, and tennis all-star. When not shredding his muscles, Senthil is spotted going to concerts, enjoying the local food culture, and traveling (most recent trips - India, China, Singapore, Malaysia, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Alaska, to name a few).

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Going to Burkina Faso to visit a friend in the Peace Core. We backpacked throughout the country for several weeks.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC category creator Eric Rasmussen

    Eric Rasmussen

    Category Creator

    Texas born and bred, Eric’s obsession for the outdoors was instilled in him at a very young age.  His love of nature is only surpassed by his passion for creating and consuming amazing food. Eric’s culinary journey began with honing in on his skill set at Austin’s own Le Cordon Bleu. After nearly a decade in the food industry as a master chef, Eric has found his calling by overseeing the EPIC production plant and now manages the creation of meat masterpieces. When not in the kitchen, Eric is found standing high atop podiums at regional cook-offs. When not winning at cook-offs, Eric can be found surrounded by mesquite trees and cactus, doing his part in wildlife and land conservation in South Texas.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Roaming wild and free in the great Canadian wilderness amongst grizzly bears and squirrels.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC office manager Clint Clancy

    Clint Clancy

    Office Manager

    Clint graduated from Texas State University with a Bachelor's Degree in English. His experience spans over a decade, which includes roles in middle, upper, and executive management. Fate lent a hand when it put EPIC founder Taylor and Clint at the right place at the right time. Clint was looking for his next adventure and Taylor was on the hunt for someone who possessed charisma, good looks, and experience. Clint's passion for perfection keeps all aspects of the EPIC operations running smoothly. When not creating epicness at the Austin Headquarters, Clint can be found flexing his muscles at the gym, or on his weekly run around Lady Bird Lake. His position as office manager requires him to keep a watchful eye, and a protective wing over all. With the hawk spirit guiding him, the sky is the limit.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Down shifting in his six-speed Corvette in order to tame a wild Mustang on a stretch of central Texas Highway.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC office coordinator Ashley Leline

    Ashley Leline

    Office Coordinator

    A self proclaimed foodie and lover of health and wellness, Ashley dove head first into the "eat local, support local" mentality that Austin advocates. She spent many moons as a juicing deity at Whole Foods Market where she was continually inspired by a culture of sustainability and real food. Before joining the EPIC tribe, she started a business that educated women on the importance of consuming whole foods and focusing on setting and reaching personal health & fitness goals. When outside of the EPIC World HQ you will likely spot Ashley on her paddle board, the greenbelt, the flea market, live music venues, or bonding with her wolf pack that consists of her husband, daughter, and loyal lab.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Living in a small camper with her family for close to a year as they restored a 100 year old home in Michigan.

  • Black-and-white portrait of EPIC fulfillment specialist Shawn Gray

    Shawn Gray

    Fulfillment Specialist

    Shawn is from New Jersey, but knew from a young age that he belonged in a much warmer climate. Having spent his entire professional career in the commercial food industry, he was thrilled to discover in EPIC a company completely in line with his nutritional beliefs as well as those of humane animal stewardship. Now he makes sure EPIC products get into the hands of EPIC people at lightning speed. Shawn's leisure time is spent running around the beautiful streets and trails in Austin, playing and writing about video games, watching anime with his wife, or playing guitar. 

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Encountering a wild bull while exploring the forests of Mexico on horseback.

  • Manny Ruiz

    Senior Warehouse Team Member

    A Central Texas native, Manny’s stomping grounds began in the city of Round Rock, a town just north of Austin. After several years of warehousing experience as a city employee under his belt, Manny found his calling with the EPIC Wolfpack and has been ensuring that our products make it into the hands of our valued consumers ever since. Outside of the warehouse, you’re likely to find Manny jamming on the drums, taking a drive around the city, attending sporting events and live concerts, and soaking up the sun someplace outdoors with his wife and son.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Taking a two week trip to Panamá City, Panamá to meet over a dozen family members for the very first time while exploring the country, hiking Ancón Hill up to a beautiful city view, and scuba diving at Taboga Island.

  • Mike Mock

    Senior Warehouse Team Member

    Mike grew up a military brat, raised all over before settling down in Texas. He began his career creating graphics for a t-shirt company which led him to explore jobs in printing, purchasing, and warehousing. His career eventually led him to a small Austin warehouse that sold dog grooming products and then to a huge fulfillment warehouse that was pushing out over 60,000 orders per day, where he averaged 80-hour work weeks during the holidays. Once the fatigue of busy season wore off, he found a new home with the EPIC Wolfpack, where he immediately put his experience to work.

    Most EPIC Adventure:

    Taking a month-long solo road trip to New Mexico, Utah, and Colorado, and never spending a day or night indoors, carrying only what I could fit in a two-seat Honda CRX!