Founder – International Tea Importers & Chado Tea Room
ITI founder Devan Shah has played a decisive role in developing America’s tastes in tea. He has consistently created markets for tea where there were no markets previously. Since its humble beginning in 1990, International Tea Importers or ITI has become a major importer of organic and fair trade teas as well as conventional teas from every producing country, There is simply nobody who has done more than Devan Shah and his company, ITI, to create the Tea Renaissance blossoming all around us today.
Co-Owner of Chado Tea Rooms
President, Owner of International Tea Importers
With humble beginnings, philanthropic entrepreneur, Reena Shah born in the Fiji Islands, has devoted her life to a career that has revolutionized tea drinking in Los Angeles, CA. In memory of her late brother Alson, who suffered brain damage as a child, she has dedicated Tea A Day for Siblings. Alson’s Tea is an outreach event held at the downtown location of the Chado Tea Room in collaboration with Lanterman’s Koch-Young Resource Center. She also leads fundraising events and sponsors many community organizations.
TEKESTE “TEK” MEHRETEAB:
Co-Owner & COO – Chado Tea Room
In 1998 Chado Tea Room was blessed the day this 20 year old Eritrean-born man walked through the door and applied for a position as a cook at the 3rd Street location in Los Angeles, CA. Tek had earned a degree in engineering but found his love and passion in tea. His brilliant young mind and boundless ambition resulted in him becoming a co-owner in Chado Tea Room, so in 1999 Tekeste joined hands as a business partner with the Shah’s.
Philanthropic entrepreneur, Tek’s contributions to the Chado Tea Rooms have been immeasurable over the past 15 years. He has been instrumental in funding and supporting many organizations through Chado Tea Rooms, including Alson’s Tea a Day for Siblings. He is COO and co-owner of the highly successful Los Angeles International Tea Festival, a consumer event held at the Japanese American Museum yearly. Tek’s hard work, dedication, and efforts have made Chado Tea Rooms award winning.