Funk describes herself as “someone who is always looking for something new to do after awhile.” So, it follows that after a career in corporate banking, she decided to explore her love of cooking and started taking classes at the Culinary School of Kendall College at night. She began thinking about launching a catering company and connected with other Kendall students, who all lamented the lack of rental kitchen spaces in the city. Funk did launch a catering company, but it was in 2007 that Now We’re Cookin’ opened its doors in downtown Evanston. Now called NWC Food Incubator, the enterprise quickly grew to include a commercial kitchen space, an event space, and a business incubator that assists food entrepreneurs with product launches from concept to placement. When deciding which projects to take under the NWC wing, Funk says, “We want to make sure that we have an understanding of their intentions—are they serious about their products and their ideas?” Funk estimates that NWC talks to about 200-300 aspiring entrepreneurs a year, with participants in the incubator coming from all over the area, including the city, north suburbs, and beyond. With the food space becoming ever more diverse, NWC plans to evolve to keep pace. There are plans to open a space in the city and make entrance into the incubator more competitive.