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Meet Zurena's Founder and CEO
Born and raised in humble beginnings in Trinidad & Tobago in the heart of the Caribbean, Nigel immigrated to the USA in his teenage years to join his Mom, not knowing what life would bring. His education began at Rockland Community College, then continued to Howard University and eventually to Stanford University where he earned his MBA. Along the way, he had a chance to work for some of the most admired companies in the world, perfecting his trade in strategy, innovation, and shaping disruptive startups for success. His life motto is “work hard, play harder” and he strives for life balance between career pursuits, being a good dad, husband and son, and partying like there is no tomorrow whenever he can. He created ZURENA to honor his late grandpa, whose secret recipe he is taking to the world. Nigel named the company after his daughters Zuri and Rena. He currently lives in Silver Spring, MD with his wife, daughters, mom, and mother-in-law. His favorite ZURENA Cocktail is the Ginsu – 1 part gin + 2 parts ZURENA Ginger, served as a martini with a slice of cucumber.
Family, Legacy and Love
In my formative years my grandfather was a huge influence. Grandpa was a gentle soul, great patriarch, and a world class mixologist. ZURENA is a secret family recipe, one of Grandpa’s, that I am taking to the world.
I named ZURENA after my daughters Zuri (Swahili – beautiful) and Rena (Hebrew – joyful melody). I wanted to set an example that if you have a dream, no matter how big, you can make it happen.
ZURENA honors Grandpa, my family, Zuri and Rena, and the many members of my village who have helped to shape my journey.
– Nigel Smith, Founder