Todd Carmichael

Last updated
Todd Carmichael
Todd Main Headshot.jpg
Todd Carmichael, co-founder and CEO of La Colombe Torrefaction
Born (1963-08-30) August 30, 1963 (age 60)
Alma mater University of Washington
Known forCEO and Co-Founder of La Colombe, Host of Travel Channel's Dangerous Grounds, Antarctic Solo Exploration/World Speed Record, Philanthropist

Todd Carmichael is an American entrepreneur, adventure traveler, philanthropist, television personality, author, and inventor. Carmichael is the CEO and co-founder of Philadelphia-based La Colombe.


He is the first American to complete a solo trek across Antarctica to the South Pole on foot with no assistance, claiming the world speed record with a total travel time of 39 days, 7 hours and 49 minutes. [1] Recorded footage of his trek later became an award-winning documentary entitled Race to the Bottom of the Earth (2010) that was aired on the National Geographic Channel. He then went on to raise thousands for one of his numerous philanthropic projects. [2]

Carmichael was ranked #1 by Food Republic for the most influential figure in its Coffee Power Ranking. He is currently the host of Travel Channel's 'Dangerous Grounds and Uncommon Grounds'.

Early life and education

Todd Carmichael was born on August 30, 1963, outside Spokane, Washington. He has three sisters. Carmichael completed his first marathon at age 15. His mother eventually moved the family to Spokane's South Hill so that he could attend Joel E. Ferris High School. From 1981 to 1982, he was part of Ferris' state championship squad. He graduated from high school in 1982, and received a distance running scholarship to the University of Washington, where he studied business and went on to work in accounting for Ernst & Young. He also ran his first ultramarathon at the age of 20. [3]


While hunting for beans, he came upon a farm that inspired him to want to help Haiti improve its coffee farming methods. He was later approached by the Clinton Foundation to collaborate on a coffee project. [4]

Carmichael was a prolific contributor to Esquire 's "Eat Like a Man" blog, where he covered subjects mainly related to coffee, its industry, and his travels in Haiti and the country's issues. [5] He has also written for Huffington Post regarding topics about the environment and animal rights. [6] He is currently the host of Travel Channel's Dangerous Grounds. [7]


Todd Carmichael states that "It's not so much about being a philanthropist; it's simply about being a good neighbor". On his adventure to the South Pole, he raised more than $250,000 for Orangutan Foundation International. He has collaborated with the actor Leonardo DiCaprio to create La Colombe's Lyon blend, with proceeds going to fund the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation. [8]

Working with ECHOES Around the World in Uganda and Wide Horizons For Children in Ethiopia, Project Afrique was also made possible through the sales of La Colombe and additional funding from the coffee-roasting company and his partner, J.P. Iberti. Carmichael also collaborated with the organization Coffee For Water to bring safe drinking water into coffee-growing regions. [9]

Todd Carmichael, La Colombe founder, with the Philadelphia skyline, 2002 Todd carmichael la colombe.jpg
Todd Carmichael, La Colombe founder, with the Philadelphia skyline, 2002


In 2014, he entered the Specialty Coffee Association of America and the Barista Guild of America's U.S. Brewers Cup competition, where he unveiled and used the prototype of his experimental brewing contraption, called "The Dragon." [10] That same year, Food Republic ranked him #1 in its "Coffee Power Ranking." [11]

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Leonardo DiCaprio</span> American actor (born 1974)

Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio is an American actor and film producer. Known for his work in biographical and period films, he is the recipient of numerous accolades, including an Academy Award, a British Academy Film Award, and three Golden Globe Awards. As of 2019, his films have grossed over $7.2 billion worldwide, and he has been placed eight times in annual rankings of the world's highest-paid actors.

<i>Growing Pains</i> American television sitcom (1985–1992)

Growing Pains is an American television sitcom created by Neal Marlens that aired on ABC from September 24, 1985, to April 25, 1992. The show ran for seven seasons, consisting of 166 episodes. The series followed the misadventures of the Seaver family, which included psychiatrist and father Jason, journalist and mother Maggie, and their children Mike, Carol, Ben.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Anthony Bourdain</span> American chef and travel documentarian (1956–2018)

Anthony Michael Bourdain was an American celebrity chef, author, and travel documentarian. He starred in programs focusing on the exploration of international culture, cuisine, and the human condition.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Samaná Province</span> Province of the Dominican Republic

Samaná is a province of the Dominican Republic in the Samaná Peninsula located in the eastern region. Its capital is Santa Bárbara de Samaná, usually known as Samaná.

<i>Town & Country</i> (magazine) Monthly American lifestyle magazine

Town & Country, formerly the Home Journal and The National Press, is a monthly American lifestyle magazine. It is the oldest continually published general interest magazine in the United States.

<i>The Departed</i> 2006 American epic crime thriller film by Martin Scorsese

The Departed is a 2006 American crime thriller film directed by Martin Scorsese and written by William Monahan. It is both a remake of the 2002 Hong Kong film Infernal Affairs and also loosely based on the real-life Boston Winter Hill Gang; the character Colin Sullivan is based on the corrupt FBI agent John Connolly, while the character Frank Costello is based on Irish-American gangster and crime boss Whitey Bulger. The film stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson, and Mark Wahlberg, with Martin Sheen, Ray Winstone, Vera Farmiga, Alec Baldwin, Anthony Anderson and James Badge Dale in supporting roles.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Destination America</span> American television channel

Destination America is an American cable television channel owned by the Warner Bros. Discovery Networks unit of Warner Bros. Discovery. The network carries programming focused on the culture of the United States—including food, lifestyles, and travel. The network first launched in 1996 as Discovery Travel & Living Network, as part of a suite of four digital cable networks the company launched that year. From its launch until 2008, the network primarily focused upon home improvement, cooking, and leisure-themed programs.

A gofer, go-fer or gopher is an employee who specializes in the delivery of special items to their superior(s). Examples of these special items include a cup of coffee, a tool, a tailored suit, or a car. Outside of the business world, the term is used to describe a child or young adult who is learning how to do tasks and is sent to fetch items. A similar job is that of peon in Commonwealth countries.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Citadelle Laferrière</span> Historic fortress and symbol of Haitian independence

The Citadelle Laferrière, commonly known as La Citadelle, is a large early 19th-century fortress located in Milot in Nord, Haiti. It is situated on the Bonnet à l'Evêque mountaintop located approximately 8 kilometres (5.0 mi) uphill from the town of Milot, 27 kilometres (17 mi) south of the city of Cap-Haïtien, and 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) southwest of the Three Bays Protected Area.

<i>The Devil in the White City</i> Book by Erik Larson

The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America is a 2003 historical non-fiction book by Erik Larson presented in a novelistic style. Set in Chicago during the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition, it tells the story of World’s Fair architect Daniel Burnham and of H. H. Holmes, a criminal figure widely considered the first serial killer in the United States.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Stefan Gates</span> British television presenter

Stefan Gates is a British television presenter, author, broadcaster and live-show performer. He has written books about food, cooking and science. He has presented over 20 TV series, mostly for the BBC, including Cooking in the Danger Zone about unusual food from the world's more dangerous and difficult places. He develops half of these TV series himself, including the CBBC children's food adventure series Gastronuts and Incredible Edibles.

<i>The 11th Hour</i> (2007 film) 2007 American film

The 11th Hour is a 2007 documentary film on the state of the natural environment created, produced, co-written and narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio. It was directed by Leila Conners Petersen and Nadia Conners and financed by Adam Lewis and Pierre André Senizergues, and distributed by Warner Independent Pictures.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Humanitarian response to the 2010 Haiti earthquake</span>

The response to the 2010 Haiti earthquake included national governments, charitable and for-profit organizations from around the world which began coordinating humanitarian aid designed to help the Haitian people. Some countries arranged to send relief and rescue workers and humanitarian supplies directly to the earthquake damage zones, while others sought to organize national fund raising to provide monetary support for the nonprofit groups working directly in Haiti. OCHA coordinates and tracks this on a daily basis. The information is disseminated through the UN news and information portal, ReliefWeb. As of September 5, 2013, ReliefWeb have reported a total relief funding of $3.5 billion given.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Leonardo DiCaprio filmography</span>

Leonardo DiCaprio is an American actor who began his career performing as a child on television. He appeared on the shows The New Lassie (1989) and Santa Barbara (1990) and also had long running roles in the comedy-drama Parenthood (1990) and the sitcom Growing Pains (1991). DiCaprio played Tobias "Toby" Wolff opposite Robert De Niro in the biographical coming-of-age drama This Boy's Life in 1993. In the same year, he had a supporting role as a developmentally disabled boy Arnie Grape in What's Eating Gilbert Grape, which earned him nominations for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor and the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture. In 1995, DiCaprio played the leading roles of an American author Jim Carroll in The Basketball Diaries and the French poet Arthur Rimbaud in Total Eclipse. The following year he played Romeo Montague in the Baz Luhrmann-directed film Romeo + Juliet (1996). DiCaprio starred with Kate Winslet in the James Cameron-directed film Titanic (1997). The film became the highest grossing at the worldwide box-office, and made him famous globally. For his performance as Jack Dawson, he received the MTV Movie Award for Best Male Performance and his first nomination for the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Qloo</span> Artificial intelligence software company

Qloo is a company that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to understand taste and cultural correlations. It provides companies with an application programming interface (API). It received funding from Leonardo DiCaprio, Elton John, Barry Sternlicht, Pierre Lagrange and others.

La Colombe Coffee Roasters is an American coffee roaster and retailer headquartered in Philadelphia. The company was founded in 1994 and has cafés in locations including Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, Boston, and Washington D.C. In 2023, it was acquired by Chobani for $900 million.

<i>The Audition</i> (2015 film) 2015 American comedy short film by Martin Scorsese

The Audition is a 2015 comedy short film directed by Martin Scorsese and written by Terence Winter. It stars Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio, playing fictionalized versions of themselves, who travel through Asia and compete against each other for a potential role in Scorsese's next film. Brad Pitt, also playing a fictionalized version of himself, makes a cameo appearance.

FilmStruck was a film streaming service from Turner Classic Movies which catered to cinephiles and focused on rare, classic, foreign, arthouse, and independent cinema. It launched in November 2016 and succeeded Hulu as the exclusive online streaming home of The Criterion Collection. It was discontinued on November 29, 2018.

<i>Before the Flood</i> (film) 2016 film by Fisher Stevens

Before the Flood is a 2016 documentary film about climate change directed by Fisher Stevens. The film was produced as a collaboration between Stevens, Leonardo DiCaprio, James Packer, Brett Ratner, Trevor Davidoski, and Jennifer Davisson Killoran. Martin Scorsese is an executive producer.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Camila Morrone</span> American actress (born 1997)

Camila Rebeca Morrone is an American actress and model. She made her acting debut in the James Franco film Bukowski (2013) and appeared in the action film Death Wish (2018), as well as the independent films Never Goin' Back (2018) and Mickey and the Bear (2019). Her role as Camila Alvarez-Dunne in the Amazon Prime Video limited series Daisy Jones & the Six (2023) earned her a nomination for a Primetime Emmy Award.


  1. "Fastest journey to the South Pole: world record set by Todd Carmichael". Retrieved 2019-06-27.
  2. Martin, Peter (2012-01-12). "Two Years After Earthquake, Can Coffee Help Save Haiti?". Esquire. Retrieved 2019-06-27.
  3. Fries, Jacob H. "Wasteland". Inlander. Retrieved 2019-06-27.
  4. "Bill Clinton Visits TechnoServe Coffee Work in Haiti | TechnoServe - Business Solutions to Poverty". 17 March 2014. Retrieved 2019-06-27.
  5.;1 [ dead link ]
  6. "Todd Carmichael | HuffPost". Retrieved 2019-06-27.
  7. "Travel Channel TV Show: Dangerous Grounds | Todd Carmichael's Expedition Earth" . Retrieved 2019-06-27.
  8. Junod, Tom (2014-01-12). "The Moment Leonardo DiCaprio Became a Man". Esquire. Retrieved 2019-06-27.
  9. "Goodwill". La Colombe Coffee Roasters. Retrieved 2019-06-27.
  10. "The Dragon - New Brewer from La Colombe Torrefaction". Retrieved 2019-06-27.
  11. Martineau, Chantal (2014-01-30). "Food Republic Coffee Power Rankings". Food Republic. Retrieved 2019-06-27.