BOZEMAN - Anthem Snacks, a local jerky company, has been awarded Montana’s Veteran Small Business of the Year, by the Montana Small Business Administration.
Nathan Kouhana, the Founder and CEO of Anthem Snacks, joined the military in 2003, and recalls the moment he felt the need to serve.
“I was studying abroad in Paris when 9/11 happened, so that’s just ingrained in my memory,” Kouhana said.
In 2009, when Kouhana’s service ended he returned to San Francisco to work at a technology company, then left for Chicago to pursue business school. Longing to return to wide-open spaces, Kouhana and his wife came across Montana and decided to call the Treasure State home.
“There were three meat processing plants that were for sale, and from there I started a jerky company,” Kouhana said.
A company that has grown to sell jerky, apparel, and more, with 10% of their profits going to veteran and first responder non-profit organizations.
“There’s a unique perspective from a veteran because they understand the sacrifices that are made, but they also understand the cost,” Kouhana said, “So my message is the same to everyone, I think everyone should support the veteran community and give back where they can.”
One of the non-profits that anthem donates to is Big Sky Bravery, an organization in the Gallatin Valley that provides support for active-duty special operations forces.
Founder and CEO, Josh McCain describes Kouhana is ‘a hero’ and how he was the tip of the spear in Special Operations.
“Starting a business is the American dream, going it as a veteran, I can’t even comprehend,” McCain said.
In the future, Kouhana hopes to open a brick-and-mortar shop for Anthem Snacks.