Interview by Wendy Jackson Slaton
Age: 42 • From: Houston • Lives In: Houston Museum District • Education: University of Texas at Austin • Favorite Destination: Sonoma, CA, New York City, Austin, British Virgin Islands • Hobbies: Cooking, Wine Tasting, Traveling, Sailing, Yoga, Hiking • Favorite Restaurants: Kata Robata, Goode Co. Seafood, Local Foods, Dolce Vita
Meet Lisa Pounds, a dynamic woman and mom who is passionate about great tasting nutritious food. She founded Green Plate Foods (GPF), a Houston-based company who manufactures and sells healthy snacks and cookies made from quality ingredients, while offering great nutrition. In January 2018, GPF was acquired by Celebrate Brands LLC, and today, Lisa is the CEO of Celebrate Brands. While she still manages “her baby” GPF, Lisa also manages six other specialty diet food brands, and a large food production facility in North Houston.
What inspired you to build a business around food and snacks?
Green Plate Foods was born from the idea that other busy parents and businesses didn’t have the time to prepare nutritious and delicious, healthy cookies and snacks. It was important to me to build something to help others understand the importance of healthy eating.
You not only lead at work but you are known as a great mentor to others…
One of my biggest goals as a leader is to be very approachable and try to lead by doing. I am regularly in our research and development kitchen creating new products and helping my production team make our products more efficiently. No detail is too small in my business and leading by example, sharing and learning from my past challenges and failures is imperative to building a stronger team and business.
I also believe in giving back to the community and on the board of advisors for Kids Meals and a big supporter of Brighter Bites and Recipe for Success.
What is your Mom story, and how do you balance career, motherhood, friends?
I’m a Single Mom with one incredible daughter, Chloe, 10, she is my pride and joy and “mini-me!” She is outgoing, an enthusiastic foodie, a wonderful artist and the best dinner date! It is a true balancing act! I am blessed with an amazing family and incredible long-time friends. I try not to over schedule every single minute of the day and simply “be present” with my daughter for a few hours at the end of the day. I also make spending time with my family and friends a priority every few weeks. I am still learning how to say “NO” to things that aren’t a priority. I have FOMO, but resting and taking time for myself has become such a bigger priority for me the last couple of years.
Lisa was honored in 2014 by the Houston Business Journal as a Top 40 under 40 award recipient. In addition, she was honored by the Texas Governor in the 2013 Texas State of the State Address honoring Green Plate as a growing and successful new business in Houston. She is on the Advisory Board of Kids’ Meals, and a member of the International Women’s Forum. Lisa is a regular speaker and big advocate for entrepreneurs and women in business.