Annette Runcie Story

August 16, 2023

Nijaah Howard

SOLUTION MINDSET From the ghetto in the island of Jamaica to Suburbia Jamaica Queens

Annette Runcie was born in the ghettos of Kingston, Jamaica in a large family of seven and emigrated with her family at the age of 11. She grew up in a very supportive family but sharing ‘feelings’ of love was not the strong points instead; it was encouraged to make something of yourself. In her conversation with THOUGHTS magazine, she shared a lot about her story. “My family are supportive to my career, but when I came to America I had to learn about my Black roots” She learned more about the Black struggle in America and African history to help her understand and navigate through the system. She said, “ I love learning, anytime something happens to me, I feel like why, there must be reason for that and after finding the reason I come up with solution”.

Annette worked hard, graduated college and landed a career job at Proctor & Gamble as a computer system analyst and later plant IT manager where she pledged to work for just a year but later end up working for 14 years. She married Titus Runcie and had two beautiful “obedient’ sons who currently both work with her in her family legacy owned businesses. Annette felt the need and the urgency to fulfill her lifelong dream of becoming an entrepreneur. After research, she decided to become a part of the Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery and Grill franchise. With the full support of her husband, in February 2005, she left Procter & Gamble to open her Golden Krust franchise in Queens Village, incorporating her business skills with her drive and her motivation for success.

Annette was just getting started, 2013, she opened Pa-Nash Restaurant & Lounge, an upscale restaurant serving a unique fusion cuisine in the heart of Rosedale, Queens, NY. She understood the assignment and after research realized that Southeastern Queens is where the wealthiest Blacks resided, she was passionate about creating space in that community that off ered the patrons an opportunity to be exposed to an elegant and classy environment without having to travel all the way to Manhattan and keeping our dollars in our community. The restaurant has received many awards, including a “1st Place” for commercial design from the Queens Chamber of Commerce.

 

It was no easy task to open due to various bureaucratic obstacles but finally, Annette brought upscale dining serving a mouthwatering Mediterranean and Moroccan cuisine with Caribbean and American Soul food influences that she calls “EuroSoul.” Her inspiration to open a restaurant dated way back, “Ever since I was a child it’s been discussed at our dinner table about one day having a family restaurant,” she said.

Her elder sister was the ‘cook’ but Annette with her background from Proctor & Gamble and owner of Golden Krust franchise was the ‘business mindset’ behind the perfect idea. It was the support of her family that motivated Annette and knew it could be done. Again, a woman with a ‘solution mindset’. In addition to her primary career endeavors, Annette Runcie serves as the founder for the Alexander Youth Etiquette for Success- Y.E.S’ organization. An organization named after her father to empower our high school youth that off ers various workshops on social etiquette, ‘how to prepare for an interview’, ‘how to use utensils’ and carry themselves in public.

She also serves as the chairperson for MARLS NYC organization, which helps assist Black and Brown businesses in the Southeastern Queens community and beyond to gain access to Capital, Clients, and Contracts. Annette was intentional on being an asset to her community by off ering solution-based services that would elevate and prepare them for legacy building and sustainability. There is a digital divide with Black business owners and MarlsNYC is closing that gap by developing a digital platform featuring successful businesses in ‘Marls Buy Black’.

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