Bios

  Dawn Van Hee
Founder/CEO/Big Sis

During more than ten years in the packaged food industry, Dawn has done everything from quality assurance at a cookie factory to sales analysis for McCormick spices, from product development of Hidden Valley Ranch salad dressings to market research in the natural products industry. She traces her abiding interest in food and nutrition to a childhood spent hanging out at the natural grocery store her mom co-founded and managed in the 70s. Amazed by the variety of all-natural candy being produced today that did not exist when she was a child, she's thrilled to return to her retailing roots with NaturalCandyStore.com. Dawn loves learning about food from all angles, be it scientific or cultural, and enjoys cooking anything from scratch. Her dream vacation is a month-long culinary tour of India. (Mexico, Italy, France or Japan would be okay, too!) She has a BS in biology and earned an MBA in food and agribusiness from Santa Clara University.

Dawn personally researches and selects every candy carried at NaturalCandyStore.com to meet quality and taste standards. She looks forward to developing exclusive products for the store. If you have product suggestions or questions, or for media requests, she's the one to contact: dawn@naturalcandystore.com.

Dawn's candy picks:
Sour Gummy Worms
Honey Mint Patties
Maple Syrup Hard Candy


Irene Nelson
COO/Little Sis

As a recent college graduate, Irene is really proud of her Chief Operating Officer title. She's a talented little sister, and we're lucky she agreed to leave the coastal paradise of Santa Cruz to join the family business! Irene has a BA in art from UC Santa Cruz, where she founded UCSC's first competitive poetry slam team. She loves walking her dog and playing with her pet bunny.

In addition to managing our candy warehouse and having a sweet disposition that's perfect for customer service, Irene designed this website and draws all the illustrations. We also have her to thank for coming up with our awesome tag line, "All the fun without the funny stuff!". Contact Irene directly at irene@naturalcandystore.com.

Irene's candy picks:
All-Natural Maraschino Cherries
Eli's Earth Bars - Treasure Bar
Hey Boo Coconut Caramel Sauce
Uncle Joe's Mint Balls


Molly Hamaker
Co-Founder/CFO/Mom

For nearly two decades, Molly has been an independent business development and marketing consultant who has helped numerous clients grow their companies. Early in her career, she was involved in a variety of food-related enterprises—in the 70s as the co-founder of a natural foods co-op, in the 80s when she promoted California farmer's markets, and in the 90s while working professionally with Frances Moore Lappé and Mollie Katzen (two of her early food heroes!). In between working and raising four kids, Molly earned a masters degree in educational psychology. A lifelong community activist, her current volunteer work is focused on mental health issues as a founding board member of The Contra Costa Clubhouses, Inc.

Molly's in charge of financial management where her head for numbers and strategic planning serves us well. She looks forward to spending more time working with her daughters in the family business in the future. For financial matters, Molly can be reached at molly@naturalcandystore.com.

Molly's candy picks:
Montelimar Nougat Bar
55% Dark Chocolate Bites - Organic & Fair-Trade

Absolutely NO artificial colors or dyes, NO artificial flavors, NO artificial sweeteners, NO preservatives, NO hydrogenated oils!
Refer-a-Friend and earn candy!
Join our mailing list for news, specials & promotions
Find us on facebook
Follow us on twitter