We had the good fortune of connecting with Rachel Gregoire and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Rachel, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
Most people start businesses, because they have products they know they can get paid for. When my husband and I launched Fam Foolery, we didn’t have a single product or service to add to our store. We were purely motivated to launch the brand to help us get through one of the most traumatic experiences of our lives. At the end of 2017, our first daughter was still born, and though her life was short lived we wanted to do something to bring honor to it. A light bulb went off for us when we realized that the one activity that helped us get through this season was playing games with friends and family. What I know now is that we aren’t special – there is power in play. People have been using games for centuries to build relationships. de-stress and solve problems. At that time, we thought we were creating a game company to help ourselves heal, but the truth is we were establishing a company that could help people all over the nation de-stress during one of the most difficult seasons in history.
What should our readers know about your business?
Fam Foolery, Inc. is a social enterprise that creates connections through games that celebrate black culture and history. Specifically we create connections through community building, cultural education and economic empowerment . One of things that our customers appreciate most about our games is that they’re family friendly. You can have fun playing them in with your at your girls’ nights, family gatherings with grandma or even in educational settings. 2020 has been a big year for us. It’s been an honor to be able to bring people joy during such a difficult season. Since the pandemic began we have engaged over 10,000 people in virtual game night experiences (both pubic and private) and had the opportunity to partner with institutions including the National Urban League Young Professionals, the National Urban Alliance and universities across the nation. While many companies are eliminating positions, we were able to invest over $4,000 into black-owned businesses and launched an internship program.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We’re actually not based in Atlanta. We are in the Chicagoland area, but our family lives just west of Atlanta. It probably sounds cliche to residents, but when we come to town our family knows we’re going to want Waffle House every morning for breakfast,
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Chris and I want to dedicate this shout out to all of our “day one” supporters who believed in our brand even when we were just selling our games out of our bookbags at local festivals. I would be remiss if I didn’t thank Brian Barker, Natasha Lynn Harris and Marty Martin by name for the countless hours they’ve spent challenging us, mentoring us and helping us navigate tough questions as we grow. We also thank our game show co-host Herb Howard for singing our praises everywhere he goes and for joining in our foolery whenever he has time. Finally, we thank our phenomenal social media manager Mallory Jordan for giving 110% to ensuring that our online brand represents us well.
1. Turan Cornell Photography
2. Mallory Jordan
3. Three 20 Media