Marine Veteran and entrepreneur, Garrett Ramela is the president of the tech-focus company, Common Sense Coffee. Prior to the company’s establishment, Ramela earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Maryland Global Campus. He also holds two master’s degrees in finance and management of information technology from the American University and the University of Virginia. During this time in the military, Ramela served on active duty in the US Marine Corps from 2014-2018 and visited countries like Japan and Djibouti.
Ramela launched Common Sense Coffee in 2019. Through the company, Ramela provides visionaries and entrepreneurs single origin roasted coffees. Ramela’s mission with Common Sense Coffee is to reinvent the way people experience coffee by leveraging technology and focusing on sustainability.
What was your experience in the military?
My experience in the military was exciting and full of travel. I got to change duty stations each year of my four-year contract purely out of luck. My first change of station transitioned me from small Marine detachment in Virginia Beach, Virginia, at Fort Story to the 3d Marine Logistics Group in Okinawa, Japan. This move to Japan let me experience the Marine Corps more and showed me the world outside of the United States. While in Japan, I had the opportunity to be an individual augment to a task force in the Horn of Africa. My experience in Africa was a humbling one where I worked in a joint environment, with a vastly different climate than Japan.
Tell us about your transition from military to civilian life?
I was fortunate to work hard during my active duty time and finished most of my undergraduate degree in business administration. I requested an early separation to finish college in the Spring of 2018. The transition was smooth and ended up being beneficial for my life after the military. The transition enabled me to start a master’s degree immediately, start working as a defense contractor in the Washington, D.C. Area, and expand my real estate portfolio.
What is your business, and what do you do?
My business is a tech-focus, company roaster called Common Sense Coffee. We are working to reinvent the way people experience coffee by leveraging technology and focusing on sustainability. We launched Common Sense Coffee in November of 2019 and have been working hard growing the business. As of today, we serve our customers online at commonsensecoffeecompany.com; however, we are in the process of opening our first café. Over the next few years, we plan to open cafés across the United States.
What are the three things you learned in the military that you have applied to your business?
I learned a lot about consistency, determination, and time management. The military is all about having time well-managed and skills developed consistently. There is this never-ending loop of learning, and reinforcement of previously learned skillsets that requires determination to see improvement. An example would be my undergraduate degree. It was challenging to be active duty and go to school full-time. However, with determination, consistency, and time management, I was able to complete a dream of mine in a much shorter time than I overwise would have been able to.
How have you used your success to send the ladder back down? (pay it forward)
I am always looking to help others. Whether it is renting someone a house or merely volunteering in the community, I take much time to talk with people because I am genuinely interested in their stories and on helping them. I believe having a positive influence on others is one of the essential accomplishments someone can have, and it is the most rewarding. The feelings I get whenever I help someone are some that I would never trade for anything in the world.
Where can readers find you on social media?
My most used social media channel is LinkedIn. You can find me on there by searching for Garrett Ramela or merely searching Google. I also have Facebook and Instagram, but only use those occasionally. You can also feel free to reach out to me on any of Common Sense Coffee’s social media. We are on Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube and are super active!