HI, MY NAME IS… Sterling Smith, U.S. Navy Veteran and owner/pitmaster of Loot N’ Booty BBQ, a world championship BBQ team that produces a line of competition and backyard BBQ products. I am also a barbecue teacher, cookbook author, and a brand ambassador.
I’VE LIVED IN ARIZONA SINCE 1998, WHEN I GOT OUT OF THE NAVY. I LOVE IT BECAUSE… I’ve always been a fan of warm weather and I love all the outdoor adventures the state has to offer.
A TYPICAL DAY IN MY LIFE INCLUDES… as an entrepreneur and owner of Loot N’ Booty BBQ, there is no such thing as a typical day in my life. One day I could be fulfilling orders from my website, lootnbootybbq.com, the next I’m doing some research and development on new rubs and sauces. I also travel extensively around the world to teach BBQ classes and compete in major national and international competitions. I love the excitement of a varied schedule and the freedom to spend my time continuing to grow my company and to spread BBQ love and knowledge. It’s my goal to ignite people’s passion for cooking and to offer them the tools and products to help them achieve the best result to share with their families and friends.
MY FAMILY IS… my support center. I love coming home to them. I travel a lot and I love coming home more. Without their support I couldn’t do what I do and be as successful as I am.
ONE THING I CANNOT LIVE WITHOUT IS… freedom. As a veteran, I highly value my freedom and ability to do what I want to do in the best country in the world. God bless America!
MY FAVORITE MOVIE I COULD NEVER GET TIRED OF WATCHING AND WHY… I love the movie Rudy because it shows that hard work and determination can lead to anything you want.
WHEN I WAS YOUNGER, I WANTED TO BE… a lot of things. I loved playing sports, so I would have loved to be a professional football player or wrestler or a firefighter. Ultimately after high school, I joined the U.S. Navy as a sonar technician. After my service ended, I attended Arizona State University, where I received a BS degree in finance. I worked for many years in the financial industry before starting my own business. Having these experiences provided me with a wide skillset that helped prepare me for entrepreneurial life.
THE SONG I WOULD SING AT KARAOKE NIGHT IS… “Brown Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison.
THE ONE PERSON WHO MOTIVATES ME IS… my wife. She encourages me and supports me and our family so much and that motivates me to support and encourage her and our kids in the same way.
THE LAST THING THAT MADE ME LAUGH OUT LOUD WAS… my kids. We have the same sense of humor, and we like to joke around. We laugh daily together.
MY FAVORITE LOCAL NONPROFIT IS… as a veteran, I like to work with and support veterans’ organizations and veteran-owned businesses. I support and am a member of the American Legion and I sponsor the Horizon High School Marching Band, where my son is a member.
MY LIFE IS… a mix of a lot of hard work and a lot of time spent enjoying the results of that hard work.
THE BEST GIFT I’VE EVER RECEIVED WAS… LOVE.
MY DREAM VACATION WOULD BE… anywhere on a beautiful beach where I can spend the days with my family and cook great food.
THE BEST PIECE OF ADVICE I’VE EVER RECEIVED… sometimes the best advice is bad advice. I was once told I’d never make money selling BBQ rubs and it motivated me to prove that advice wrong. I think I have succeeded in that.