July 12, 2022

Meet the COO

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Hi, my name’s Julia Wrin Piper. I was given two last names at birth, which is a nightmare for both Google and the federal government. So if you try to find my digital footprint, you’ll discover that, aside from some unfortunate early professional candids, I’m disturbingly absent from all the usual places. But, I assure you, I am very real. 

In fact, as Clover’s new Chief Operating Officer, my presence may be more real than most imagine. While it may sound like a made-up catch-all for a company’s to-do list, the definition of “operations” is as concrete as, well, the concrete it is built on. “Operations” is the unglamorous, unforgiving, meticulous, grinding gears of a company at work. 

At Clover, Operations defines each internal intersection of the company – from the loading dock when fresh produce arrives, to the production floor where we make soup, to the restaurant counter when we pour the coffee.

At its most basic, it is the fix time for a broken restaurant fryer, the age of an electrical outlet, the number of callouts and the accuracy of a sales forecast. 

At its most beautiful, it is the continuous summation of hundreds of labor hours as the delivery van with today’s meal box reaches your door. 

Operations is the business “plumbing” of an enterprise – everything good and bad and hard that make a good business, an ambitious and principled business, work. Day in, day out. Operations is the seemingly-absent-but-very-real thing that keeps the hummus smooth and the falafel fried. In many ways, this blog has been the story of Clover’s operations, filled with snapshots of intoxicating ups and painful downs.

Before coming to Clover, I was the Chief Operating Officer for Aeronaut Brewing Co., a New England craft brewing company that, similar to Clover, was founded by MIT grad students looking for ways to make great beer in a community-minded space. I was coming directly out of grad school, where I studied evolutionary biology in yeast (a whole different blog post), so I joined the Aeronaut R&D/Quality team. From there, I learned how science can be used to not only answer questions about reality, but to create new realities. 

At Aeronaut, I led a stellar production team to make our version of traditional and inventive beer styles in spaces that raised up artists, makers, and community organizations. As a group of academic expats, we learned how to turn fun, off-the-wall fermentation ideas into real, competitive, and tasty products. Most importantly, I learned that the difference between a brilliant homebrewer and a multi-location industrial brewery is—you guessed it!—Operations.

At Clover, I hope to create a sustainable reality through the food that we make and the experiences we provide. 

As Chief Operating Officer, I’m excited to work with an incredible team to grease and reinforce every gear in every corner of Clover. While the work takes time, the real progress that you can taste in a fresh seasonal sandwich is proof that together, we can make this little slice of our world a little bit better. 

Recent Posts

January 26, 2023
The Pizza Friday Box gave us an idea: calzones! Ayr has been making these at his house and texting us photos. They’re big and saucy and so good. Basically a stuffed pizza/turnover situation with origins in 17th century Naples.
January 18, 2023
As you might know, we love feedback. Survey Day is a tradition that harkens back to the first days of the food truck, over 10 years ago. If you got a card in line today at Clover, or if you ordered on the app today, click here to take the survey. Huge thanks for helping us improve.
January 13, 2023
Thanks all who joined for the first public food dev meeting after Covid. Phil did a great job pulling it all together. If you’re a customer, farmer, vendor (or Clover staff member) reading this, you are invited to Food Dev! These happen Thursday afternoons at the HUB and they’re where all new food ideas are born. Just make sure to sign up – spots are limited.
January 5, 2023
House-made carrot lox, hearty vegetable stews with bread and pickles, Tunisian breakfast bowls, a pizza party kit, and a dream of snow, all in one box. Our Snowed In Box is back. This was Greg’s idea back in 2020. He thought it would be cool to make a box that was equally whether eaten after snowboarding or cozied up on the couch watching a movie.
December 21, 2022
We’ve been getting a lot of requests for the ability to gift a friend Clover Meal Boxes. After a lot of late night tech sessions, we have a way to do this! Yay! I’ve been looking and seeing a few of you have started to discover this feature and are starting to gift away. So cool to see.
December 16, 2022
If you’re a weekly meal box subscriber, you may have noticed way fewer plastic containers in your deliveries recently.When we started the program, we were in the pandemic, new to this whole home delivery thing, and a big concern was making sure that nothing spilled inside the boxes. So we relied on post-consumer recycled containers (aka plastic deli containers) for a lot of the items.
December 13, 2022
We’ve been getting back into the merch game. First up: squash shirts. I thought it would be fun to celebrate the diversity of the squash world. Although butternut is probably the squash you see most in the grocery store, there are actually over 100 types of squash, all with their own patterns, colors, and textures.
December 6, 2022
The Bridgewater is back!! This is probably the most requested sandwich on our menu. Michelle who runs our social media says she reliably gets one message per week asking when it will return. In 2015, Paul and Bryan came up with this sandwich as an homage to the jalapeño poppers at The Charlie Horse, a now-closed tavern in their hometown of Bridgewater, MA.
December 6, 2022
I love the holidays. I love the lights, I love the traditions, I love ornaments and pine needles all over the floor.  I love the movies (“Muppet Christmas Carol”) and the books (“A Child’s Christmas in Wales.”) I love the good songs, I love the schlocky songs (if you’ve never heard “Suzy Snowflake” or “Dominic the Donkey”, stop reading right now and click through.)
December 1, 2022
It was inevitable. Our meal box program had to find its way into restaurants at some point. A bunch of you have been asking if we can sell “on demand” meal boxes in our restaurants – for those times when you have last-minute dinner guests or forgot to subscribe by the deadline. So we’ve been easing into the process of combining one part of Clover with another.
November 28, 2022
Brussels Sprouts are extra sweet this time of year, and King Brussels, in his infinite wisdom, has cooked up a Brussels Week in our meal boxes. Every single subscription box will contain a recipe inspired by brussels! This is the first time we’ve explored a seasonal theme across our entire lineup and we’re excited to dive in.
November 19, 2022
This was Jane’s last week at Clover. We’re wishing her the best in her next steps (but also not so secretly hoping she comes back!)