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In Focus | Julian Helman

In Focus is our gift to the community. A way for us to help show our recognition for the people, businesses and organizations that help make our city great. The team at is passionate about this community and the people that make it amazing. We want to show our friends, neighbours, family and colleagues that we notice them and the fabulous things that they do.

What is your name?
Julian Helman.

Where are you from and how long have you lived in Kelowna?
I've lived in Kelowna for 5 years.

What is your favourite activity?
Hiking, swimming and hitting the slopes.

If you had to choose: pizza, tacos, or burgers?
Pizza for sure.

What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you?
Definitely too many.

What is the most inspiring thing that has happened to you?
Watching my nieces and nephews grow up. Kids are cool!

Tell us your favourite childhood memory.
There are so many but I would say hanging out at the lake with my family.

Where do you volunteer or give back to in the community?
I volunteer at a lot of different places like Allan Brooks Nature Center, SPCA BC, and the Kelowna food bank. As well as the Kelowna Gospel Mission and Canadian Mental Health Association during Christmas by supervising classes or preparing food.

If you could change one thing in the world what would it be?
I would end conflict caused by politics and to end racism and hate.

What is your favourite activity in Kelowna?
Swimming in the lake! Along with tennis, biking and hiking.

Where would you sneak away to in Kelowna to spend some time alone?
Strathcona park or Gyro beach. Occasionally Paul's Tomb behind Knox Mountain.

Where would you like to see positive change in Kelowna and why?
I would like to see more development of downtown; not big box stores or chain restaurants, but more condos and buildings for housing. Its time to start building upwards and not out.

What do you think makes Kelowna great?
Our beautiful views, good food, the lake, and people.

What are 3 things on your bucket list?
1. Skydive
2. Watch Game of Thrones season 8
3. Visit Paris

Tell us something that not everyone may know about you.
I'm a big Elvis Presley fan.

How do people connect with you, personally, through social media? (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest)

What is the name of your business/organization?
Karat chocolate.

Why did you get into/start this business?
I love design. I'm a big kid and like to play with colours.

What is the goal of your business?
To make people happy. Create good jobs for myself and loved ones. To promote, inspire and help other local small business here in Kelowna as well as to promote the Okanagan and showcase it in a positive light.

What has been your biggest struggle either in work or life?
Not being able to say no.

If you could start all over again would you do things the same or would things be different?
I think you can always do something better the second time round but I wouldn't have done much different. I think any business owner has made mistakes but I feel like that's part of the process. I would not change my experience up until now.

What do you always find yourself saying?
'Do you think we should try this?'

If you could spend one whole day with anyone in the world who is currently alive, who would you select?
Donald Trump. I might not love him but he sure is interesting.

Why do you think it is important to shop locally?
It helps the local economy, keeps the money here and provides jobs. It generally is more fresh and better. It also uses less energy and gas to transport goods and is overall better for the environment.

Give someone you think that deserves it a shout out and explain why!
My parents and family would be number one but David Upshaw from Canoe Coffee Roasters gets props. He's a friend, a good father and a great business owner.

My choice for the KelownaNow In Focus spotlight is:
David Upshaw from Canoe Coffee Roasters.

We encourage you to leave your comments and words of support below and submit your own nomination by clicking HERE. You are also welcome to submit a form of your own by clicking HERE. Thank you, Kelowna.

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