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About us

Our Legacy:

A Four-Generation Commitment to Family and Quality Ice Cream

For over a century, family has been at the heart of Velvet Ice Cream’s story. Since our founding in 1914, we’ve proudly remained a family-owned and operated business nestled in Utica, Ohio. Our premium craft ice cream, renowned for its signature velvety texture, has become a cherished staple in homes across central Ohio and throughout the region.

Luconda Dager
Joanne Dager
Vice President
Joe Dager

Community-Centric Values:

Supporting Causes We Believe In

Embracing a rich tradition of giving back to local communities, Velvet Ice Cream has been a proud supporter of organizations like Big Brothers/Big Sisters, the Scouts, the Utica Sertoma, Adopt-A-Highway, Licking County Humane Society, and so many more. Our steadfast commitment to philanthropy reflects our belief in being a positive force in the areas we serve.

5 Million Gallons and Counting:

A Scoop of Happiness Everywhere

Today, we distribute over 5 million gallons of ice cream, spreading joy one scoop at a time. Our headquarters in Utica, Ohio, not only serves as the heart of our operations but also welcomes over 150,000 visitors annually. It's a testament to the love and loyalty our community and beyond have for the Velvet experience.

A True Original:

Where Tradition Meets Innovation

From the very first gallon of hand-cranked vanilla ice cream crafted by Joseph Dager in 1914, we've held firm to our commitment—never compromising on our recipes, traditions, or values. These elements are the essence of what makes Velvet Ice Cream a true original, and we're honored to share our delicious journey with you.

Meet The Dager’s

Luconda Dager, President

In the realm of ice cream, Luconda has not only carried on the family legacy but also brought her unique perspective from the retail fashion industry in New York. Since joining Velvet Ice Cream in 1994, Luconda has been the fourth-generation leader since 2009, steering the company with a perfect blend of tradition and innovation. She remains committed to upholding the company’s values while expanding its portfolio and regional reach.

Luconda’s dedication extends beyond the business realm; she actively gives back to the industry and community. Serving on the Board of Directors of the International Dairy Foods Association and as a trustee for Hervey Memorial Library in Utica, Ohio, she contributes her time and talents generously. Luconda is also a prominent figure in the Conway Center for Family Business, frequently sharing her insights as a speaker and author within the industry. A proud graduate of Newark Catholic High School and Xavier University in Cincinnati, she earned her bachelor’s degree in 1991.

Recognized as an influential business leader on the Columbus Business First “Forty Under Forty” list in 2007 and a Central Ohio Family Business Hall of Fame Recipient in 2018, Luconda’s leadership has been integral to Velvet’s success. In 2019, Velvet achieved the remarkable rank of #10 on the Largest Central Ohio Women-Owned Businesses list in Columbus Business First.

Joanne Dager, Vice President

Joanne’s journey from managing restaurants in Cincinnati to becoming a crucial part of Velvet Ice Cream’s fourth generation showcases her dedication to the family business. Joining in 2004, she has played diverse roles within the organization, with a primary focus on Velvet’s Foodservice and Tourism divisions.

Leveraging her extensive background in food sales and hospitality, Joanne excels in designing customized programs to meet customers’ needs. Her commitment extends to creating memorable experiences for those visiting Velvet’s headquarters and the historical Ye Olde Mill. Actively participating in the business community, Joanne serves on the Advisory Board for the Conway Center for Family Business and the Guest Relations Association Board.

A graduate of Newark Catholic High School, Joanne earned her bachelor’s degree in communications from Xavier University in 1995. Her career includes notable positions such as the general manager of Cincinnati’s Plaza 600 restaurant and roles in food sales at Abbot Foods and US Foods.

Joe Dager, Chairman

Joe’s journey with Velvet Ice Cream began in 1950 when, as a young boy, he started working for the family company. Alongside his brother Mike, he transformed the business into a major Ohio tourism destination and a thriving enterprise.

In 2009, Joe passed the leadership reins to his daughters, assuming the role of chairman of the board and advisor to the leadership team. His wealth of experience guides Velvet’s continual growth strategy and reinforces its role in the local community.

Service has been a cornerstone of Joe’s legacy, evident in his contributions to organizations like the Utica Sertoma Club, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Utica Historical Society, Licking Memorial Health Systems board, and the International Dairy Foods Association board. As an active member of the Licking County community, Joe, an Eagle Scout and recipient of the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award, continues to leave an indelible mark on Velvet Ice Cream and beyond.