American Talent

The Greatest That Made It Great
American ingenuity architects

Starbucks' CEO and philanthropist Howard Schultz

Howard Schultz's life is a shining example of the American Dream, proving that even a person with modest means can make a significant difference in the world. By incorporating a community European institution into the fabric of American and global society, he has not only altered the way in which coffee is consumed but also altered the social environment.
Schultz's philanthropy and social entrepreneurship show that he cares deeply about solving societal problems. His influential role in building modern America is attested to by his leadership at Starbucks, his cultural contributions, and his commitment to philanthropy and social activities.

Howard Schultz, the driving force behind Starbucks' global success, is one of the few entrepreneurs who has had as much of an impact on consumer culture. In his role as CEO, Schultz has expanded a small coffee shop into a global icon of freedom of expression and community. This piece examines Schultz's amazing life, his impact on Starbucks, and his broader contribution to American business and culture by combining the human-centric storytelling of ABC's 60 Minutes with the in-depth historical study of the BBC.

The Developing Mind
Schultz was born in 1953 in Brooklyn, New York, and he did not have a very privileged upbringing. He saw poverty first hand as a child growing up in the Bayview Housing Projects. Schultz was the first member of his family to go to college, and he did it with the help of a football scholarship at Northern Michigan University.

Making Starbucks' Dream a Reality
Schultz was initially drawn to the Seattle location of Starbucks because of its reputation as a purveyor of high-quality coffee beans; this was in the early 1980s. When Schultz first started working for the company in 1982, he saw the potential for this little bean retailer to grow into a European sensation.

But it was a vacation to Italy that gave Schultz the big idea. Schultz was inspired by the vital role coffee shops play in Italian culture and saw an opportunity to bring the same sense of community to the United States.

Coffee Rulers of the World
When the original Starbucks owners didn't embrace Schultz's ideas, he left to create a competitor called Il Giornale. However, he came back in 1987 to purchase the then-17-store Starbucks franchise. Starbucks' expansion across the country and around the world can be traced back to Schultz's original business concept of selling brewed coffee in a café setting.

Starbucks, under Schultz's leadership, has evolved into a global behemoth, a "third place" between home and work, and an integral part of the routines of hundreds of millions of people around the world.

Charity Work and Community Projects
Schultz has shown a strong dedication to social justice. Notably, he was the first to implement programs that provide free college educations and health insurance to all Starbucks workers, regardless of whether they work full or part time.

His charitable work includes substantial donations to veteran's charities and a persistent dedication to helping young people find work, especially those from marginalized communities.

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