January 28, 2023

Damon Dunn – Dunkin, Washington

Damon Dunn grew up in Texas living with a family of 10 in a three-bedroom trailer. Now, he is a Stanford graduate that owns five Dunkin’s in the Pacific Northwest. He has paved a successful path for himself based on his principles of working hard and setting yourself apart.

In the socioeconomically challenged community Damon was raised in, he was not exposed to business mindsets. His understanding of the lack of information in communities throughout the country is why he started the Long Beach College Preparatory Academy, working to find students with high academic potential and help them achieve their dream of attending a competitive four-year college, setting higher expectations for themselves that will help build a lifetime of opportunities. Now, Damon intentionally goes back into low-income areas and provides knowledge, educational opportunities, and jobs for the community.

“The reason I want to go back into low-income communities is I want to lift the expectations of young people, particularly young people that are in impoverished communities or lower income communities, because they have more potential than what they are aware of. And if their expectations are not ever lifted, then they could go on believing that is par for the course,” Damon says.

Damon understands that stories like this are not often top of mind when lawmakers are considering legislation that take aim at the franchise model – and subsequently hinder a franchise’s ability to positively impact their workforce. He feels strongly that now more than ever, we need to bolster franchises and encourage policies that enable them to continue uplifting their communities.