By Gwen Rollings
Lennise Germany, founder and CEO of Livy O’s Catering, is a self-proclaimed ‘goal digger.’ She has gotten so good as a goal digger that she holds seminars on how to help others become successful at it, too.
About six years ago, Germany made a decision to leave her career at a hospital behind and head out in search of the goal rush she dreamed she would find in the Tampa area goal fields of culinary arts.
Like many other goal miners, her initial efforts were humble and uncertain as she began by making individual meals and selling them from the trunk of her car. Her persistence finally paid off after a meal delivery to TECO when she was asked to cater an event. That’s when Livy O’s Catering Company began.
The business name originated from the four younger children of Germany and her husband, Omar: Omar Jr., Olivia, Obree and Olena. Livy O’s became a family affair.
According to Staci-Leigh Ashwood, operations manager, “When the company first began, it was completely operated by family members in different capacities, from those preparing the food to serving at the staffed events.”
Ashwood stated that without the help of family members, Livy O’s would not have achieved its present success as one of the Bay area’s leading catering companies.
Persistence, quality menu choices and a respected reputation landed multiple government contracts. Livy O’s is currently approved to serve breakfast and lunch for grades K through 12 under the National School Lunch Program. Germany envisions becoming a presence on college campuses as well.
Livy O’s struck gold after being named one of 200 vendors for the 2021 Super Bowl. Ashwood said it was a long process. “We were interviewed by a panel in order to get approved. We also had to be a small business and minority business certified by both the City of Tampa and the County of Hillsborough.”
COVID-19 has curtailed many catered events, but it has not halted Livy O’s operations completely as it safely ensures food service for micro weddings, home celebrations and preparing students’ breakfasts and lunches.
Although many goal seekers become discouraged and abandon their dreams when things don’t quickly pan out as they hoped, Germany and her family press on, providing delicious, healthy meals and continuing to mine unexplored opportunities in order to keep their claim of an experience for guests that is unparalleled.
For more information, call 494-0820 or check out the Livy O’s website at http://livyos.com.