Our Story

Happy healthy moments.

These are the three words that set the foundation for Zenblen's vision.


Like a lot of people, our team found it difficult to juggle healthy eating and trying to routinely exercise on a busy work schedule. Between long meetings, travel days, and additional commitments, we often don't have the time to make healthy choices.

That is why we set out to create Zenblen - a network of tech-enabled smoothie bars. We provide the option to fuel your body with a fresh and healthy smoothie that's made right in front of you.

Find happy and healthy moments with Zenblen!

The Team

Tom Xinyuan Zhang

Tom is our Co-Founder and CEO. What started out as a daily protein shake for over eight years has evolved into the inspiration for Zenblen's smoothie portfolio. Tom previously worked as a strategy consultant, where he leveraged data driven recommendations to help clients grow their businesses. More importantly, Tom started the office tradition of Smoothie Fridays. Tom holds a B.A. in Economics from the University of Chicago.

Fun fact about Tom: He named himself Tom after the famous feline from Tom & Jerry when he emigrated from China.

Constantine Bovalis

Constantine is the lead engineer at Zenblen. He joins us with extensive experience in mechanical engineering, robotics, and software development. In his free time, Constantine loves developing complex 3D puzzles, some of which have been sold around the world! He's sees the Zenblen kiosk as his next puzzle: a puzzle he's determined to solve to ensure we never have to clean a blender again! Constantine graduated with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Northern Illinois University.

Fun fact about Constantine: He has played the clarinet for almost 15 years and has been known to jump on stage with random Greek bands here in Chicago!

Mithila Kedambadi

Mithila joins Zenblen as our summer UX/UI Design intern. She has a background in Architectural Design and is studying Design Research and Strategy at the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) Institute of Design. She considers herself a curious systems thinker and was part of the team at IIT that formulated the values and design principles that undergird the design of the kiosk and UI. Through user-centered research, she helped develop the interactive prototype for Zenblen’s smoothie kiosk and is spending her summer catapulting these designs into development!

Fun fact about Mithila: She loves animals, and in the past has opened her home to 15 different pets, including a couple turkeys!

Stephanie Mellinger

Stephanie is our Co-Founder and Head of Marketing and Sales. She joins the team having worked in Marketing & Sales at multiple Fortune 500 companies, gaining experience that helps her drive company growth. She also played rugby for over six years and has her Personal Training Certification. Fitness and health are always at the top of her mind as she usually starts her day leading a group fitness class or two! Stephanie received her B.S. in Marketing from Ferris State University with a minor in Spanish.

Fun Fact about Stephanie: She is scuba certified and has dove in seven different countries.

Connor McDermott

Connor is Zenblen's in-house dietetics and nutritional consultant. Connor received his B.S. in dietetic sciences from Western Michigan University and is currently pursuing his masters in nutritional science at the University of New Hampshire. With more than half a decade of experience in the food industry, Connor ensures all our smoothies taste delicious and fuel your body with the optimal blend of nutrients. In addition, Connor has a passion for sustainable food and advises Zenblen on our ingredient sourcing.  

Fun fact about Connor: He practices judo competitively and also volunteers at the Michigan Blind Athlete Associate to teach the sport to visually impaired youth.

Miranda Burt


Miranda joins Zenblen as our summer customer strategy intern. She brings valuable experience from multiple global corporations, including projects on the customer loyalty & rewards program at United Airlines. Miranda will leverage her experience to spearhead loyalty and rewards program for our customers—smoothie streaks anyone? Miranda graduated with distinction from the University of Chicago and will be entering Chicago Booth for her MBA this fall.

Fun fact: Miranda has traveled to 39 different countries - some of them multiple times! 

Our Supporters

We are thankful to be based in the heart of the Midwest. We currently work out of the University of Chicago's Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation as well as mHUB, Chicago's first innovation center focused on physical product development and manufacturing.

In 2019, Zenblen was selected into the Chicago Booth New Venture Challenge (NVC), recognized as one of the top-ranked accelerator programs in the nation.

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Chicago, IL

© 2021 Zenblen, Inc.