THE TEAM

Nigel

Nigel Smith is the sole founder and President of Zurena LLC.  He created ZURENA Love ElixirTM  as a labor of love and legacy bearing his daughter’s names and his late grandfather Carlton Smith’s expertise as a renowned mixologist. As an innovator for some of the world’s most admired brands, Nigel’s career spans roles with AARP, Visa USA, McKinsey & Company, Goldman Sachs Group, and KPMG.  Nigel holds an MBA from Stanford University, a BBA from Howard University, a Certification in Leading Innovation Change from UC Berkeley, and is a 2015 graduate of Leadership Maryland.  A proud native of Trinidad and Tobago, Nigel resides in Silver Spring, MD with his wife and two daughters.

Naughty Nigel – One Part Gin, One Part Cucumber Vodka, Muddled Cucumbers and cilantro, and Four Parts Zurena. Serve over ice with a mint sprig garnish! Yeah baby!

What do Milton, Barry, Sonya and Hubert have in common?  It started with Nigel’s vision and a sip of Zurena sealed the deal. Following in the tradition of his grandfather’s mix, Nigel has attracted a core team to help bring Zurena to a bar, restaurant, hotel or internet portal near you. He is the man with the plan, the vision and the flavor to bring people together and some of the best blended drinks you have yet to taste.  Take a look at our menus. Give Zurena a try and send us some of your own recipes.  

Zurena: Love Elixir.  Uplifting Spirits!

Milton

Milton B. Yates has dedicated his life to the health and fitness of Washington, DC for nearly 20 years.  Milton began his career as a fitness professional in 1999 becoming a certified personal trainer while studying business management and wrestling at Howard University in NW DC.  Milton is now in his 16th year as the head wrestling coach at his alma mater, Gonzaga College High School.   Milton is the founder of the District of Columbia Takedown Club, a six year old youth wrestling organization created for boys and girls ages 4 to 14. For the last fifteen years, Milton has also been the trainer and personal chef for the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders.  

Milton is the 2016 recipient of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition Community Leadership Award.

Milton’s success in community fitness activations and his extensive experience in restaurant ownership/management led to amazing partnerships in entertainment.  Milton  ascended quickly to landing spirit brand clients like Moet Hennessy, working closely with Diageo and Pernod Ricard spirit brand houses, and consulting restaurants/bars, businesses, and brands on best practices for micro/macro successes. 

Mellow Milton – One part Zurena + One part natural spring water. Served on the rocks. Simple. Healthy. Delicious.

Hubert

Hubert Braithwaite brings it all together; whether its streamlining operational complexities or engaging long lasting relationships, Hubert’s visionary ,results-oriented leadership has a demonstrated record of success. As a sales leader, he has driven B2B and B2C outreach efforts creating channel opportunities and capture profitable new business for diverse industries.  Hubert is the connector forging strategic partnerships and business development opportunities for Zurena.  He is a critical thinker who leverages business processes and sales cycle knowledge to increase revenue. Hubert is a strong communicator with diverse public speaking experience, including: presenting to C-level decision makers and working with media.

“My favorite Zurena drink is called ‘Meltdown’. It’s a combination of Rivers rum (or any over-proof rum 126% proof and above) and Zurena chilled, neat with a twist of lime.”

Barry

Barry Lee-Soy is dedicated to helping companies and organizations creatively build to the future and effectively manage for today.  He is a creative and analytical strategist experienced in blending emerging trends and internal capabilities to develop, implement, and monitor the execution of business strategies. He has worked with technology, non-profit and fortune 500 companies to clarify organizational goals, develop business strategies, and align strategic objectives with performance measures for success. He is the Zurena futurist.  Through his thought leadership, Zurena is able to creatively build for the future and effectively manage for today. His professional signature is underscored by his commitment to growth, innovation, resiliency and human-centered design thinking. A sip of the Blended Barry will make you see the future.

The Blended Barry -Two parts Strawberry-Lime Cider and One part Zurena blend with ice and enjoy with a lime garnish!

Sonya

Sonya is a visioneer helping dreamers design execute and fund their dreams. For the last 15 years, she has been the mid wife to hundreds of dreams.  Whether its life management (coaching) or project management (consulting), she fuses creativity and strategy ensuring clients achieve their intended impact. Her background is as eclectic as her clients from private equity to film production to small business modeling to food justice.

Sonya sees herself like Zurena, adding flavor to whatever project she supports. As  Zurena’s project manager, she is mindful of the 168 hours in the week and  seeks to magnetize the moving parts helping the team meet their mark.

Zurena Dream

There’s always one in every crowd. The non drinker.  Sonya’s concoction  proves Zurena’s versatility. Try the Zurena Dream- One part  coconut water, 3 parts Zurena and a dash of cinnamon, served over ice.