Even at a young age, Todd Schuetz was instilled with the idea of helping the local community. As a child, Schuetz said that his family used to volunteer a lot of their time at Food for Lane County and other non-profit organizations. Today, Schuetz doesn’t have as much time to volunteer, but he’s still helping in ways that he can.
Schuetz is the founder and owner of Café 440, a restaurant known for its locally grown ingredients. According to Schuetz, all of Café 440’s produce is bought through Charlie’s Organic Produce and its beef is raised 15 miles from the restaurant.
“We shop at the top of the list,” Schuetz said.
The slogan for the restaurant is Eat, Drink, Give. Eat and drink may seem obvious in the restaurant business, but giving is something that Schuetz feels strongly about. Schuetz said that he only advertises with Oregon Resource Guide and that the rest of his advertising budget is donated to the community. On a monthly basis, Schuetz finds somewhere that needs help, and gives away his advertising money to them.
“It’s not much picking and choosing,” Schuetz said, “sometimes customers come in, or an employee knows a group that needs assistance.” Schuetz said that he does whatever he can to help others.
“At this point in time in my life, I don’t have the time to volunteer like I used to,” Schuetz said.
On top of monthly donations, Schuetz also donates to local schools, Drive for the Cure Golf Tournament, and sponsors several charities during the holiday season. Twice a month, Café 440 has live music and announces who will receive their donations.
“We’ve helped over 100 locations in town,” Schuetz said.
He seems determined to keep his customers and staff satisfied and is proud of what Café 440 is today.
“If I put my mind to something, it’s going to happen or I’m going to break trying,” Schuetz laughed.
“There’s a lot of soul here,” Schuetz said. “[Café 440] is here so that me and my crew don’t have to work for national chain restaurants anymore.”
When asked about future plans for the restaurant, Schuetz said that he’s turned down several opportunities, electing to stay where he is now, and that his kids would have to be older for him to decide to change anything. Schuetz has been married for 28 years and has three kids. He said that his family is by far the greatest part of his life.
“I’m just trying to be a good parent and a good husband,” Schuetz said.
Schuetz seems to genuinely care about everyone around him. He can often be found in the front of the restaurant, greeting and meeting with customers or helping his staff carry out orders.
“I really enjoy the public,” Schuetz said, “We live in a very educated community with a large heart. Those are the people I want as my customers.”