Quiet Heat: Chris Crum / Crum's Sauce

There’s a special mindset and determination required to successfully launch a business, not to mention dedication to the task at hand, a vision for the future and a plan to execute. It also takes logic—knowledge of when to pivot and change the strategy, when to bring in more help, when to hunker down and wait for the perfect opportunity and when to push ahead no matter what.

As the owner and founder of Crum’s Hot Sauce, Christopher Crum possesses all of those things—characteristics that serve him well in business and were crucial during his 10 years in the Army from 1994 until his honorable discharge in 2004. A "quiet professional, Crum served as a Special Forces Engineer Sergeant in the 10th Special Forces Group, during which time he was often in the thick of the action, serving two tours in Kosovo between 1999 and 2001 as well as two in Iraq in 2003 and 2004. After his separation from the Army in 2004, Crum got a contract job with Triple Canopy, which took him back to Iraq in 2005.

Throughout it all, Crum always maintained his sense of home by keeping container gardens. By happy accident, he found himself growing peppers—and so were sown the seeds of Crum’s Hot Sauce. Crum now works with his partners, brothers Doug and Russell Clift, who share his vision and help support the company’s forward motion. Without the help of his co-founders, the Clift brothers, Crum might have never gotten the brand off the ground.

Offering a variety of flavors that run the gamut from slightly sweet and smoky to those with some major heat balanced by a tinge of fruitiness, the line of sauces have gained a following that proves Crum’s vision and his knowledge. More special than the flavor of the sauces, however, is the ties that Crum’s Hot Sauce has to the Green Beret Foundation (GBF). Crum's Hot Sauce donates five percent of their annual profits back to GBF. “I’ve lost friends to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and cannot comprehend the pain and loss their families have endured,” says Crum. “The Green Beret Foundation takes care of the needs of families in a variety of ways, so we’re proud to be able to give them financial support to help further their work.” In addition, Crum’s Hot Sauce also sponsors the Green Beret Classic golf tournament at the Army Navy Country Club. Crum's Sauce

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