Candace Nelson’s entrepreneurial journey is marked by her remarkable success story, particularly with the establishment of her renowned cupcake business, Sprinkles. She has consistently demonstrated a tenacious spirit, refusing to be sidelined in any competitive field she enters. Candace further expanded her influence by appearing as a guest judge on the 15th season of the hit TV show Shark Tank. Her participation not only underscored her business acumen but also positioned her as a beacon of inspiration for aspiring entrepreneurs.
While Candace Nelson’s professional accomplishments have been widely recognized, fans are understandably curious to know what she has shared about her personal life. Look no further, as we’re here to provide insights into the life of this accomplished woman, including details about her husband and children, giving you a glimpse into the family of this inspiring woman.
Candance Nelson’s Background
Candace Nelson, born on May 8, 1974, in Indonesia, has achieved significant milestones in her career, particularly as a pastry chef and as the co-founder of the renowned cupcake bakery Sprinkles. Interestingly, her affinity for baking has deep family roots, with her French-American grandmother gaining recognition for her dessert creations at a San Francisco restaurant during the 1930s. Despite this familial connection to baking, Nelson initially didn’t explore her passion for it in the early stages of her career.
Her educational journey took her to Groton School, where she graduated in 1991, followed by her enrollment at Wesleyan University, where she completed her undergraduate studies and graduated in 1996. She embarked on her career by working as an investment banker and financial analyst, primarily for technology companies. In her own words, she expressed her motivation for a change, and stated, “I decided after the dot-com bust and 9/11 that I wanted to do something much more creative.”
Nelson attended Tante Marie’s Professional Pastry Program in San Francisco, where she honed her skills in pastry and baking. Her culinary journey took a significant step when she started her own custom cake business from her home in San Francisco. In 2005, she relocated to Los Angeles and embarked on a groundbreaking venture by co-founding Sprinkles Cupcakes alongside her husband. Despite facing challenges, their business achieved remarkable success and even introduced the world’s first cupcake ATM. In 2014, Nelson sold Sprinkles to a private equity group, and she has donned many hats since then.
She authored ‘The Sprinkles Baking Book,’ which earned a spot on the New York Times Best Seller List in 2016. In 2017, she ventured into the restaurant industry by launching Pizzana, a rapidly growing chain of award-winning Neo-Neapolitan pizzerias. Nelson’s influence extends to television, where she has served as an executive producer for Netflix’s ‘Sugar Rush’ and enjoyed a longstanding role as a judge on Food Network’s ‘Cupcake Wars.’ Her work has garnered recognition and acclaim through various media outlets, including appearances on popular shows like ‘The Today Show’ and ‘Masterchef.’ She has been the subject of profiles in esteemed publications such as People Magazine, The New York Times, and The Los Angeles Times, cementing her status as a prominent figure in the world.
Currently, Candace Nelson oversees CN2 Ventures, a family office and venture studio. Through this endeavor, she has provided support and backing to a diverse range of startups operating in specialty food, retail, health, wellness, and early childhood sectors. Notably, her focus includes empowering and championing female and underrepresented founders, contributing to greater inclusivity and diversity in entrepreneurship.
Candace Nelson’s Husband
Candace Nelson and her husband, Charles, first crossed paths in the 1990s while working as investment bankers in San Francisco. Charles is from Oklahoma and is a graduate of the University of Virginia Darden School of Business. He graduated in 1992 and had been working in corporate finance at the time. Their initial professional connection soon blossomed into a deep friendship as they discovered shared values and a similar sense of humor. This strong foundation of friendship eventually evolved into a romantic relationship.
In 2001, the couple decided to take the next step in their journey together and tied the knot amidst the scenic beauty of Sonoma’s wine country. They exchanged vows on a picturesque ranch, marking the beginning of their life as a married couple. The entrepreneurial spirit within them led to a significant milestone in their partnership. In 2005, Candace and Charles co-founded Sprinkles Cupcakes, embarking on a joint business venture. They relocated to Los Angeles to expand their enterprise, which proved to be a resounding success. Under their leadership, Sprinkles Cupcakes established 38 cupcake ATMs across the United States and garnered recognition as a celebrity-endorsed brand.
However, when they decided to sell the majority of the stakes for Sprinkles Cupcakes in 2014, it was not an easy decision. Talking about it, she said, “I started Sprinkles before I had kids. I gave it everything. My husband was my co-founder. I was so wrapped up in it, and to a certain extent, there was no separation of identity from my business.” Nelson and her husband, Charles, have continued to explore various business ventures together, further cementing their status as a dynamic entrepreneurial duo.
Among their collaborative ventures are Pizzana, CN2 Ventures, and Willy California, reflecting their shared passion for innovation and investment. Candace frequently shares moments and pictures of their journey together, providing a glimpse into their enduring and ever-evolving relationship. Their enduring partnership is a testament to their resilience and mutual support, making them an inspirational and formidable power couple in both the business and personal realms.
Candace Nelson’s Kids
Candance and Charles share their life with two sons, aged 13 and 10-years-old. The couple has consciously chosen to keep their children out of the public eye, and as a result, not much information is available about them except for occasional pictures that Candace Nelson may share on her Instagram account. Together, the Nelson family of four, along with their beloved Norwegian Terrier dog named Willy, have created a warm and loving home. While they maintain a private family life, their occasional glimpses into their world reflect the bonds of love and togetherness that define their family unit.