When Sean Cary and Anton Novak purchased Rounds Bakery, they knew they wanted it to have a higher purpose. So they made a commitment to each other that they would treat all of their employees fairly and to give back to the community however they could.
In the five years since then, they have donated more than 25 tons of food to organizations helping the homeless, as well as more than $200,000 in donations. Oh yeah, and all of their employees are paid a living wage and receive insurance and a retirement plan, among other benefits.
“It’s important to us that our employees be able to pay their bills and live their lives,” Cary says.
They have also made a concerted effort to hire people with disabilities. “We have jobs that need to be done, and they can do them,” Cary says. “We’re happy to be able to provide those opportunities whenever we can.”
Commitment to community
In addition to taking care of their team, Novak and Cary give back to the community in creative ways. To celebrate Valentine’s Day, one of the biggest holidays of the year for a bakery, they celebrate “14 Days of Love,” where they surprise a different organization each day between February 1 and 14. Their partnership with Moana Nurseryallows them to donate flowers as well as baked goods, to the different organizations on their list.
While Valentine’s Day is the big one, Rounds gives back to people and organizations throughout the year. “There are so many organizations that need help, and we try to work with as many as we can, but our main focus is in two areas,” Cary explains. “Education is huge for us, because it’s harder to lift yourself out of poverty if you don’t have the tools. And it’s hard to learn when you’re hungry, so we help with food programs.”
Some of the non-profit groups they have supported include Eddy House, the Volunteers of America shelters, Nevada Humane Society, Terry Lee Wells Nevada Discovery Museum and Meals on Wheels. In addition to their donations, Rounds promotes these community organizations at their bakery, providing more information for their customers on how they can also help.
Helping those in need
A former pilot, Novak has a special affinity for the people who make the airport run smoothly, so Rounds Bakery recently sponsored meals for TSA agents and other government employees affected by the federal government shutdown. Joey Gilbert Law partnered with them in this endeavor.
“And I absolutely love the Veterans Guest House,” Cary says. “Since Anton is a veteran, it does have a personal meaning for us, but we’re just so impressed with what Noreen (Leary) and her team have been able to do and how they provide a place to stay for veterans and their families.”
Cary thoughtfully reflected on the memory of a kind man who showed up at the bakery to buy a donut. As he counted out his change to pay, he told Cary how he was grateful for the Rounds Bakery donuts he had eaten at the homeless shelter, and how it was important to him to visit the bakery and purchase one — so that he could support the organization that had supported him.
This is just the beginning for Cary and Novak, and they’re always looking for innovative ways they can give back. They do it for each other, their three children, their employees and the community as a whole. “We love Northern Nevada and what we have been able to achieve here,” said Cary. “We’ll continue to do whatever we can to make it even better.”
If your non-profit organization is interested in partnering with Rounds Bakery, email firstname.lastname@example.org.