Teresa Nix cares about catering and community

Teresa Nix has a master’s degree in public administration and is one dissertation away from a doctorate. in Educational Leadership Administration, but she is happiest in the role she took on full-time in 2017: caterer and restaurateur. “I took that leap of faith, as they say, but it worked.”

Her contributions as a local business owner, volunteer and mentor have made her one of Tallahassee’s 25 Women to Know for 2024.

Initially located on Crawfordville Highway, Catering with Care was a popular eatery on the city’s southwest side where Teresa, her husband Joe and their family-like team served up southern soul and comfort food to hungry Tallahasseeans.

But Nix had a vision for growth and expansion, which led to a move to South Monroe Street and eventually to the heart of the city in Klemen Plaza, as JoEllen’s.

Here they made history as the first and only black-owned business in the area. “As a business owner, I am inspired by the customers who consciously choose our location,” she said. “It is always my intention to provide our customers with quality service. I really want the best experience for them. I do it because I care.”

Nix brings that same dedication to everything she does, demonstrating her leadership and service mentality as a member of the American Business Women’s Association (AWBA) Silver Dome Chapter, the Rotary Club of Tallahassee Southside and the School Advisory Council of Oak Ridge Elementary School .

Nix immediately jumps in where she sees an opportunity to help. When she joined the American Business Women’s Association, she immediately joined the local chapter’s board of directors, where she quickly stood out as a leader and was elected president of the organization.

Under her leadership, the ABWA created the Adopt-A-Precinct program, which served as poll workers at the Towne East Baptist Church polling place and donated their stipends to the organization’s scholarship fund. She helped create the region’s first “Mother-Son Gala” as another scholarship fundraiser.

“It was at The Moon, where mothers and sons came together to provide a space for them to cultivate their relationship and connect with each other,” she said. Nix was twice recognized as the chapter’s Woman of the Year and under her leadership the local chapter received its first and only Best Practices award, a national recognition for the chapter.

A member of the Rotary Club of Tallahassee Southside, she began serving as treasurer shortly after joining the organization, assisting with the chapter’s Community Diabetes Health & Wellness Fair, Mother Son Dance and the Community Thanksgiving Dinner.

“I enjoy being able to use my accounting background to help organizations streamline their processes,” said Nix.

She steps up when others need help and recently helped a local youth organization find a space for a business etiquette class because she remembers what it was like to need help. “I remember being at formal dinners at FAMU and not being sure what to do,” she said. “I know this will be a great program for them!”

It’s this kind of community spirit and hospitality that makes Nix someone worth knowing. But she is modest and explains that she just enjoys being part of the action. “Like many, I enjoy spending time with my family,” Nix said. “We spend so much time together at work, but it never gets boring.”

She truly blooms where she is planted, living in the moment and appreciating her blessings. “My favorite aspect of living in Tallahassee is the moderate pace. Tallahassee is slow enough to enjoy the roads, beach walks, country life and good old Southern charm, and fast enough to offer a variety of options,” she said.

“There are more than enough opportunities for everyone to succeed. Tallahassee is my hometown and the birthplace of my absolute favorite things: my education, my family, my friendships, everything that I am.