Shepherd’s Ground Coffee Shop opens in Ross

Father-daughter owners want business to be a hangout spot for locals.

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

ROSS TWP. — Shepherd’s Ground Coffee Shop desires to be a community gathering place. As one of newest businesses to open in Ross, the owners encourage everyone to give it a try. With a warm, welcoming environment, they hope to be a comfortable, relaxing place for coffee, or meeting a friend as well as for work and study.

“I hope it’s an outlet for the mom dropping her kid off to school in the morning, and it’s for the high school student to study, and for the businesswoman to get out of her office and be able to work as well as somewhere where people can meet friends and be encouraged, and just meet good people and be in a healthy environment, whether that’s just getting out of the house, or meeting a friend. That’s really the sole purpose of it,” said Emilee Gillespie-Wormald, co-owner of Shepherd’s Ground Coffee Shop.

As business partners, Gillespie-Wormald and her father Tom Gillespie own the coffee shop. In addition to being a father and daughter team, they also serve as co-pastors at New Vision Church in Harrison.

“My dad always encouraged all of his children to own their own businesses. So, when I brought this idea to him of a coffee shop, he was quick to jump on board. We are co-pastors at our church as well. He is the senior pastor, and I am his assistant pastor. So, when I brought this to him, we prayed on it, and we believe that this is what God wanted us to do,” Gillespie-Wormald said.

Gillespie-Wormald has three sisters. Her younger sister, Victoria Grace Adams (Grace,) also owns her own home-based business located in Ross, called “Beauty by Victoria Grace LLC,” which specializes in lashes and hair.

Emilee said she and her dad are a lot alike and they enjoy working together.

“We have the same personality in a lot of ways. He is more in the background, making sure things are going well, and I’m in the front, working. He’s not going to be so much hands-on as much as I will. So, I think that will benefit us. We can both take the reigns in different areas,” Gillespie-Wormald said.

Emilee has been a co-pastor at New Vision Church for about three years, and Tom has been in his role for over 20 years. Originally, the church was a Baptist church and he converted it and changed the name when he took the lead as the pastor.

“Our relationship has grown a lot in this, now being business partners, but if I didn’t have his encouragement to do it and didn’t persevere, I would not be here,” she said.

Gillespie-Wormald said the goals of their business and ministry go together. They hope to connect with people in Ross, get to know them, and serve the community.

“We actually would like to have a church that meets at the coffee shop on Sunday mornings, or evenings,” she said. “I think they really link together, because we want to be an outlet to people in Ross for whatever that is, just like at a church, you’re there for people every day and that’s what we want to be. We want to make connections, get to know people, and encourage people just as if they were in our church…We hope this is a place where the community can come together.”

The business is closed on Sundays, so she said holding a service there in the future would work out with the schedule.

“I am most excited to get to know the people of Ross, and how we can best serve them. I’m really interested to see what items they cling to, and the items they don’t like. I’m really interested to see what kind of people we draw,” Gillespie-Wormald said. “I’m just thrilled to see who comes in and who we’ll have the opportunity to get to know.”

It took two years to prepare for opening the business, Gillespie-Wormald said. The family did all the work on the inside of the building, and they equipped the space for a coffee shop.

“I had lost my job due to COVID-19. I was a nanny full-time, and when COVID-19 hit, the mom decided to stay home. So, I was just thinking of things I wanted to do, and the Lord really put it on my heart to open a coffee shop,” Gillespie-Wormald said.

Then, she started reading a lot about coffee shops, and she met with other people who owned coffee shops in Cincinnati.

“Deeper Roots Coffee really helped me out. They trained me, they helped me get my equipment. They looked at the location before we bought it, and they really encouraged me that I could do it, and they just stewarded me through the whole process,” said Gillespie-Wormald.

Shepherd’s Ground uses Deeper Roots Coffee as a wholesaler for their coffee beans.

“We fresh brew everything. We pull every expresso for every drink, fresh. We also offer bags of coffee, which are available for purchase. We offer bagels from The Bagelry in Cincinnati. Then, we get cinnamon rolls, muffins and cookies from Sunflower Bakery,” Gillespie-Wormald said.

Shepherd’s Ground offers plain bagels, asiago bagels and everything bagels, available with butter and cream cheese. They also serve chai tea, and hot tea in black, green or herbal.

“Customers can come in and they can have an experience that is calming and inclusive. That was a big thing. I wanted people to come in and feel like they didn’t have to understand everything about coffee to order, and that we have an environment that is loving toward everyone, whoever they are, whether that’s a mother, a friend, a high school student, and beyond. We want them to feel loved and welcomed in this environment,” Gillespie-Wormald said.

The coffee shop can accommodate up to 25 people with tables and chairs inside the main seating area. In the coming months, Shepherd’s Ground Coffee Shop plans to add a drive-through.


What: Shepherd’s Ground Coffee Shop

Where: 4190 Hamilton Cleves Road in Ross Twp., across the street from Shell


Hours: 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday; Closed Sunday

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