Nicole Cruz

Programs Manager

Nicole was born in Houston and has considerable experience working in the food and beverage industry. Currently she serves as programs manager at Southern Smoke Foundation.

A passionate supporter of the industry she has been a part of for 15 years, Nicole has spent time at restaurants, in catering operations, and at cafes and coffee shops. You may see her today taking shifts at Blacksmith Coffee in Houston.

In 2020 she joined Southern Smoke as a case manager; in 2022, she transitioned to heading up programs. In this role, she works with partners to develop and execute Southern Smoke’s initiatives, primarily its University Mental Health program providing no-cost mental health counseling to food and beverage workers and their children in multiple states.