Women owned business

. March 22, 2017.
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True equality— have we reached it, or do we still have a lot to fight for? The answer isn’t easy, but most women in business can agree on one thing: equal or not, things are different. What does it take for a businesswoman to stay on top? The women in charge of some great local businesses shared the secrets to their success.

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Tweaks on ‘Tiques

Mary Beth Lemieux, Owner
5247 Secor Rd. | Unit 7
419-266-0935 | tweaksontiques.com
A custom furniture designer and manufacturer offering a variety of styles for their clients, the shop rehabilitates, repairs and finishes furniture and accessories. Extraordinarily unique, appealing to all ages, they are a treasure to Toledo and the midwest.

My inspiration comes from: A love of color, design and my work studio, which I submerse myself in every day. There are never two similar days, because everything I create is unique.

To get away from it all, I: Go to my studio and create beautiful furniture/accessories that I believe people will treasure.\

To work, I need: a ton of space! I currently have over 10,000 sq. ft. of manufacturing, studio, and showroom space!

Something most people don’t know about me is: that I started this business.

The most exciting thing on my bucket list is: to go “picking,” “treasure hunting” and antiquing in Europe.

The one thing I wear everyday is: my paint-covered apron.

My favorite gadgets are: my vintage paint brushes.

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Sophia Lustig

Meredith Sherman, owner
124 10th St. | 419-243-5131
sophialustigshops.com
With 80 years of history and fashion expertise,
Sophia Lustig is a women’s specialty store
in downtown Toledo, who knows good service never goes out of style and that relationships
are priceless.

How do you know when you’re done for the day? With technology today, you’re never really done for the day, your work is always with you. However, work/life balance is important and there comes a time to put it away and refocus. My hungry kids are another good clue.

I got my start: At age 16. I started working at Sophia Lustig for Paula Fall after school, from 3-5:30pm. I would open boxes, steam clothes, clean up dressing rooms… whatever needed to be done. I loved it from the very beginning.

To get away from it all I: Head to the beach.

What advice would you give to the younger you? Trust your gut.

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SEW & SUCH

Mary M. Cianci, Owner/Tailor/
Design Seamstress/Wizard
1242 W. Sylvania Ave. | 419-478-5455
sew-n-such.com

Think of Sew-n-Such as the emergency room for clothing or all things sewable. Mary will tackle just about anything to help a customer get things how they want.

How do you know when you’re done for the day?
As my day goes on into the tenth hour, and all the sudden I’m thinking how much time each item needs, I have to decide to stop after a certain task. Before I walk away, I make sure to have my next day already lined up to start.

I deal with stress: Well. That is when I am at my best!

The one thing I wear everyday is: Polka dots. I love my polka dots.

To get away from it all I: go home to my laboratory (home sewing room) and sew for myself or the house, never knowing what I will come up with.

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Atlas Bridal Shop

Jeanne Fairchild, owner/manager
4895 Monroe St. |  419-474-9119
atlasbridalshop.com
A full service bridal shop, Atlas offers wedding gowns, bridesmaid dresses, mother’s gowns, tuxedos and wedding accessories. In addition, their separate shop, Blue by Atlas Bridal, specializes in prom, homecoming and pageant gowns. Atlas Bridal Shop is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year. Seamstress Jo Hafner (also pictured) celebrates 40 years at the shop and Jeanne celebrates 30 years.

Something most people don’t know about me is: I used to be a registered nurse and worked at the former Mercy Hospital for almost three years before joining the Atlas family.

The one thing I wear every day is: My grandmother’s’s bracelet and the color black— it’s our dress code here at Atlas. It makes getting dressed in the morning so easy.

How do you know when you’re done for the day? I’m usually the last one to leave and it’s usually after close.

Something most people don’t know about me is: I used to be a registered nurse and I’m going to be a first time Gigi (grandma) in August!

The most defining moment in my life was: when Oprah spoke to me. I heard her say on a Weight Watcher’s commercial last January, “If not now, when?” She inspired me to join Weight Watchers and I have lost almost 60 pounds.

My favorite gadget is: My IPhone 7+.

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Sheri May Meyers Pet Styling Salon

Sheri Meyers, Owner/Groomer
5529 Harroun Rd. | Sylvania
419-882-8888.
601 S. McCord Rd. | Holland.
419-868-6887
sherimaymeyerspetstyling.com
Owner Sheri Meyers started working with dogs at age 16, and has spent 38 years loving her career as a stylist. Her salons offer all aspects of complete and professional grooming for most breeds of dog and cat, including retail products, such as brushes, colognes, shampoos, and more.

Tell us about a time when, despite difficulty, nevertheless you persisted.
When I was just getting started in 1987, I had outgrown the small space that I was renting in a veterinary hospital and needed money for a retail space. I went to four different banks asking for a small loan— they all laughed at me. My accountant told me it would be a huge risk. My family thought I was crazy. Finally, a bank lady extended me a $6k signature loan, I charged $12k on my credit card, and talked a landlord into renting me some of Sylvania’s prime space in a strip mall. For months, I cried. I borrowed $6k more from the bank and worked as a cocktail waitress at night to make ends meet. Then, word hit the street. The phone rang off of the hook. Soon, I was hiring more help and working six days a week to meet demand.

What was a defining moment in your life?

When my competitor asked to buy me out and to come revamp his grooming facility.  After three years, he decided to make some changes, that I thought were unethical, in how the clients were treated, I didn’t agree with his new plans, as they would gravely affect the clients and the integrity of our services. He subsequently fired me immediately.  This was difficult as I had my first baby five months prior and had just taken custody of my eight-year-old stepson, and my husband (at the time) had changed jobs, taking a $12/per hour pay cut, to get us health insurance. I was the breadwinner and now had two more mouths to feed with no job. We scraped some money together and restarted my business in exactly 30 days. I was booked solid from day one.

I deal with stress by: doing yoga, meditation, walking and dancing. Deep breaths really do work!

 

The one thing I wear every day is: 24 hour lipstick! Even though I groom dogs all day, I take pride in how I look. I don’t get to wear fancy clothes to work but I wear the cutest stuff made for our industry and makeup that lasts all day.

What advice would you give to the younger you? Only surround myself with positive people that represent the same values that I do, at work and at play. Of course, always listen to your heart.

To get away from it all, I: go anywhere that there is a patio and a glass of wine. Anytime that I can be outside I am happy.

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Van Optical

Kim Van Tuinen, Owner
5307 Monroe St. | 419-841-8550
vanoptical.com
Van Optical has been serving Toledo’s community for more than four decades, with the Van Tuinen family’s deep roots in the eye industry. Owned by Kim Van Tuinen since 2007, the business was first opened by her father. Kim’s grandfather owned a local optical laboratory in the 1940s. With generations of experience, the Van Optical family is a trusted name in Toledo.

Tell us about a time when, despite difficulty, nevertheless you persisted.
When entering the optical field over 30 years ago, patients would continually ask for “a man.” They were conditioned to do so, as it was “a male dominated field.” Luckily, that is no longer the case and women as opticians are very strong.

What advice would you give to the younger you?
Treat every customer as the most important individual you have met, listen to them, and let them know you really care about their needs and concerns.

My inspiration comes from: staying current on all of the latest innovative products and listening to my clients’ feedback. Also having products (frames) for all types of people and budgets.

To get away from it all I: spend time with family and friends, watching old movies, massages, and lying in the sun.

What lesson do you wish you had learned sooner? To be more definitive in all my business decisions.

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Foodology

Chef Andi Lawrence, Owner and Chef Instructor
2059 W. Laskey Rd. | 567-970-7100
foodologytoledo.comfacebook.com/foodologytoledo
Foodology offers fun and informative recreational cooking classes for all ages, skill levels, budgets and occasions. The culinary education center also hosts birthday parties for adults or children, corporate team building, wedding parties, family events and ServSafe training for industry professionals.

Tell us about a time when, despite difficulty, nevertheless you persisted.
Opening a new business is a sacrifice, and difficult more often than not. When you
balance work, family, friends, kids’ activities and the needs of the business, it often feels like someone always ends up disappointed with the decisions that have to be made. It’s very hard for me to disappoint my loved ones, but I know that, in the end, I’m not only doing this to pursue my own dreams, but to make their dreams a reality too. I am extremely lucky to have an amazing support system of family and friends that understand this struggle, and do more than they know to help me stay positive and keep believing in the success of hard work and perseverance.

How do you know when you’re done for the day? When I start calling my kitchen equipment the “whatchamajiggy” and the “whatchamacallit”, I know it’s been a long day and it’s time to hang up my chef coat for the night!

To work I need: coffee, music and comfortable shoes.

My inspiration comes from: my kids are my motivation, but my inspiration comes from all of my former culinary students over the year. Over ten years of feedback has been priceless when it comes to making my cooking classes at Foodology organized, creative and successful.

I deal with stress by: resetting with a “No Technology Day”. To me, that means no social media, no emails, no booking sites and a lot of fresh air and sunshine!

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Flick’s Package Liquor

Melissa Fitzgibbon, Vice President of Daily Operations, Manager
3320 W. Sterns Rd. | Lambertville, MI.
734-854-2000 | flicks4fun.com

To work, I need: Besides coffee? My team managers and sales. They are the backbone and my rock. I have the best managers you could find anywhere.

What advice would you give to the younger you?
Think things through more thoroughly before you act and/or speak.
I got my start: Right here, washing dishes and cleaning bathrooms. I had to start at the bottom and work my way up.

To work I need: Besides coffee? My team managers and sales. They are the backbone and my rock. I have the best managers you could find anywhere.

To get away from it all I: love to go up North for fishing and hiking.

What was a defining moment in your life? When my grandson was born.

I got my start: right here, washing dishes and cleaning bathrooms. I had to start at the bottom and work my way up.

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Dermatology Associates &
ADA Aesthetics

Sarah Stierman, M.D., Dermatologist and Co-owner
12780 Roachton Rd. | Perrysburg 
7640 W. Sylvania Ave. | Sylvania
419-872-0777 | daohio.com

Dermatology Associates has been providing comprehensive, compassionate dermatologic care to the Toledo Metropolitan and outlying areas since 1991. We pride ourselves on tailoring individual treatments for multiple medical, surgical, and aesthetic skin concerns.

To work, I need: A good team supporting each other.

My inspiration comes from: My mother and my business partner— two strong women who mastered the art of work-life balance.

Something most people don’t know about me is: I sing and act in local community theater.

I got my start: cleaning offices after hours.

My favorite gadget is: Amazon Echo.

What lesson do you wish you had learned sooner? It’s hard to be the boss!

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3D Wellness

Joani Donovan, LMT, NKT, CKTP
and Dr. Alisha Bruhl, PT, DPT, Co-Owners
4035 W. Central Ave. | 419-367-1417
3dwtoledo.com
When Joani and Alisha met, they quickly realized that their collaboration offered a combined 20 plus years of expertise as body workers and business women, bringing a unique and even more effective service to the Toledo area. Together, they opened 3D Wellness, Toledo’s first comprehensive massage and movement center. They cater to each individual’s needs, meeting their goals through breathwork, gait assessment
and training, neuro re-education and massage.

What lesson do you wish you had learned sooner?
Alisha: Don’t be afraid to collaborate. Good can
become great when working as a team.

To work, I need:
Joani: Continuing education. I am constantly learning.
Alisha: Continuous learning. One of the traits that Joani and I share is that we are always learning to do the best job we can for those at 3D wellness.

What was a defining moment in your life?
Alisha: Meeting Joani.
Joani: (Laughs) Meeting Alisha! It felt like we’ve known each other for years.

My favorite gadget is:
Joani & Alisha: Our new compuTrainers! Come check them out.

If you could get advice from any woman— fictional, real, living or past— who would it be, and why?
Joani: Princess Diana. I admired the way she handled herself through the situations that came her way.
Alisha: My mother. She does everything with faith, integrity and hard work— and she’s an awesome.

My inspiration comes from:
Alisha: Seeing patients/clients be able do things that they never thought they would be able to do again or ever in their life.
Joani: Getting a client out of pain, moving and achieving their goals.

Something most people don’t know about me is:
Joani: I played flute in the Cardinal Stritch band.

To get away from it all, I:
Alisha: I drink tea and watch British comedies with my mom and sister.
Joani: Cuddle with my puppies or play with my grandchildren.

I deal with stress by:
Alisha: prayer and putting things into perspective.
Joani: Breathing, asking for help, and prayer.

What advice would you give to the younger you?
Joani: Never give up

I got my start:
Joani: From a colleague. I listened and asked lots of questions!

The one thing I wear everyday is:
Joani: Anything from Lululemon.

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Gross Electric

Laurie Gross, President
2807 N. Reynolds Rd. | 419-537-1818
grosselectric.com
A family-owned distributor of electrical supplies and
residential, commercial and industrial lighting fixtures.

How do you know when you’re done for the day?
When I can’t think anymore and my brain is fried.

My inspiration comes from: Helping our business and people grow. Also helping customers solve lighting problems.

To get away from it all, I: Travel out of phone range, overseas or hiking in a national park.

To work, I need: a good night’s sleep!

The last book I read was “A Man Called Ove”, and the next book I’ll read is “The Vinyl Cafe”.

Something most people don’t know about me is: I majored in Film in college.

My favorite gadget is: my LG Bluetooth headset.

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Optical Arts

Mary Nyitray, Owner and Licensed Optician
2934 W. Central Ave. | 419-535-7837
opticalartsinc.com

For 55 years, Optical Arts has been elevating eyewear. Mary’s father started the business in 1962, and Mary’s taken his unique approach and added her own style. Treating eyewear as an art, Optical Arts has a reputation for creating individualized, chic eyewear that is innovative and artististic. Your face is art, they help you frame it.

Tell us about a time when, despite difficulty, nevertheless you persisted.
Starting as an optician in the ‘70s— it was a man’s world. Customers would always request the man. I was ok with that, but when I did work with a customer, I had to go over and above, with exceptional knowledge and service. The techniques I used made customers request me rather than the men available.

My favorite gadget is: The Visioffice2 system, which takes pictures of our clients wearing different styles of frames, allowing them to see their choices with their own glasses on. This also takes measurements down to a tenth of a millimeter, providing the most precise vision possible. We are the only retail location in Ohio to have this, which allows us to sell totally customized progressive lenses.

What lesson do you wish you had learned sooner? Dark chocolate is better for you than milk chocolate

To work I need: chocolate.

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Barr’s Public House

Stephanie Soldner, Managing Partner
3355 Briarfield Blvd. | Maumee
419-866-8466 | barrspublichouse.com

A Maumee pub with an elevated menu, sophisticated spirits and a cozy atmosphere, Barr’s Public House is a gathering place full of surprises. Boasting a broad craft beer selection, unique cocktails, and an eclectic, creative menu, Barr’s offers everything you want from a pub— but with an upscale twist.

Tell us about a time when, despite difficulty, nevertheless you persisted.
Barr’s Public House had a rocky start with an uncertain direction. When I met my business partner, Ken Gabel, in 2012, I immediately knew he was a good, honest man. I didn’t want to see this place fail before it was given a fair shot, so I did what I could to survive. We had a lot of help along the way, and through perseverance, we are still surviving! Becoming his partner in 2014 was one of the best decisions I have made in my life so far. I have learned and grown so much in the past five years, and it has been the time of my life. I absolutely love this place— we have the best guests and regulars. Our staff is like family, and no matter what happens, I know that Ken and I will remain lifelong friends.

What lesson do you wish you had learned sooner?
I have learned many lessons through trial and error, but I am one who tends to trust until given a reason not to. I have been deceived many times, and I wish I had been more investigative.

If you could get advice from any woman— fictional, real, living or past— who would it be, and why?
Oprah Winfrey. I admire her strength, her work ethic, her spirituality and how she gives back through philanthropy.

How do you know when you’re done for the day?
Usually my mind will stop before my body does, and I can get a good 10 to 12 hours in, but then my mind will wander and it’s hard to focus.

To work I need: a good night’s rest and caffeine.

Something most people don’t know about me is: I was in the military and I went to school for Massage Therapy.

What was a defining moment in your life?
Becoming partner here.

The most exciting thing on my bucket list is: I want to skydive.

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Health Foods by Claudia

Claudia David-Roscoe, Owner
3904 Secor Rd. | 419-474-2400
healthfoodsbyclaudia.com

Claudia began working with local, natural health foods when she was 16 and has been committed to clean, sustainable products ever since.

Her store carries everything you need to fill your life and home with safe, organic, clean and natural products to enhance your well-being. Whether Claudia is organizing lectures or workshops, finding new products for the store, or helping customers, she’s committed to helping you on your journey to wellness.

What’s the best advice you ever received?
My uncle that owned many businesses told me to always know my margins, because at the end of the day, “the numbers are everything.” After 27 years of being in business, I honor that wisdom.

What lesson do you wish you had learned sooner?
We cannot change others, we can only change ourselves within our own heart and it’s up to each of us every day to work on it. It’s all a journey— something that has taken me years to learn. Patience truly is a virtue and a great teacher!

My inspiration comes from: My mother. I am grateful for the beautiful, simple wisdom she instilled in me; that God-given food and supporting our health naturally are both aspects of our spiritual journey in life. She saw food as an expression of love and always prepared it from a place in her heart.

Because of her, my career in natural health began at a local health food store when I was 16 and I have been fortunate to be “hangin’ out” in one ever since. My husband and our three beautiful sons are also my great inspiration and keep me focused on what is truly important in life.

What advice would you a young entrepreneur starting her own business?
I believe to be a successful entrepreneur one must first-and-foremost, create what comes from their heart and believe in what they’re creating. Hands-on experience and staying motivated to continually learn are essential for success, both personally and professionally.

How do you deal with stress?
I believe when life unfolds in difficult ways, it is faith, persistence and staying focused on our blessings that gives us the strength to keep moving forward.

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Boyd’s Retro Candy

Pam Lloyd-Camp, Owner
954 Phillips Ave. | 419-720-7387
boydsretrocandy.com

Memories are made at Boyd’s Retro Candy, the sweet shop full of nostalgia. The bright pink store is made to satisfy all generations of candy lovers and carries candy from every decade— even other centuries. Boyd’s maintains its sugary magic because owner, Pam Lloyd-Camp and her staff love the excitement of candy as much as the taste. At Boyd’s, candy isn’t just about the sugar, but the childhood memories— new and old— that always come along.

My inspiration comes from: My grandfather. When I was very young, he used to take me to Glendale Drugs and give me a handful of change to purchase candy with. As a four-year-old, I’d put the change on the counter and pick out as much candy as I could, until the clerk told me I pushed my limit. Our store has seen many grandparents bring their grandchildren in to give them those same special memories. It always sends me back to those times with my grandfather, and it puts a special glow in my day. It is wonderful to see the grandparents, parents, uncles and aunts passing on their love of candy to the children.

Tell us about a time when, despite difficulty, nevertheless you persisted.
One morning I received a call from a friend telling me how sorry she was to hear about my building. I told her I didn’t know what she was talking about. I hurriedly over to the store.  As I got close, I saw that one of the stone pillars for the upper storage room over the driveway were laying in a pile on the driveway. The rest of the day was spent in trying to find someone to support the upper story and get the area secure. For the rest of that summer, a great contractor and a wonderfully talented stone mason worked to reconstruct the pillar. Sometimes people thought because of the fence around the front of the building we were closed, but as the store itself was not affected. We were open the entire time throughout the reconstruction of the historic facade.  

To work I need: my great staff. I’m so fortunate to have a dedicated “family focused” staff. I could not do what I do without them.

My favorite gadget is: I love my box cutter. It is an old fashioned heavy solid tool and the blade only comes out when you push on it.  We cut open a lot of boxes at Boyd’s, so a safe, sturdy box cutter is essential.

What advice would you give to the younger you? Just keep doing what you love as God will work out your plan for you.

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CREATIVE EXCELLENCE

Merinda Marcinkowski (Tippett), Owner/Stylist
3102 W. Sylvania Ave. | 419-472-1454
creativeexcellence04.com
Enhancing our guest’s existing beauty with superior services and pricing affordable to most.

Tell us about a time when, despite difficulty, nevertheless you persisted.
When I decided it was the right time to acquire a building for the salon rather than leasing. I knew it wouldn’t be easy, but it would be worth it. It’s an investment in our retirement, our community, my colleagues and my profession. I couldn’t have done it without the support of my husband, family, friends, colleagues and the guests that come to my chair.

My inspiration comes from: Many things. The most important inspiration is the guest in my chair. It all begins with a thorough consultation, then I work my magic on enhancing their existing beauty.

To get away from it all, I: Spend time with my precious grandchildren. Lately, that’s not been as much as I’d like. I also ride my motorcycle.

If you could get advice from any woman— fictional, real, living or past— who would it be, and why?
I would like advice from Tabatha Coffey. She is a self-made woman and salon owner. She is very knowledgeable and inspiring to myself, as well as many other hairdressers and women salon owners.

To work I need: a positive attitude, music on, beautiful guest in my chair.

I got my start: with a Cosmetology program at Whitney High School. I have been licensed since July of 1985. My first full time hairdressing job was at Regis in Northtown Mall.

The things I wear everyday are: earrings and lipstick.

My favorite gadgets are: my iPad Pro and my Surface Shears

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AM Skin Health & Plastic Surgery

Angie Scott, Co-Owner and Licensed Aesthetician
& Dr. Marlene Welch, Co-Owner and 
Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon
6525 Secor Rd. | Lambertville, MI.
734-568-6100 | amskinhealth.com
AM Skin Health & Plastic Surgery is a comprehensive skin health, plastic surgery and wellness center serving the greater Toledo area and Southeastern Michigan. We are proud to offer the latest, state-of-the-art products and services in a safe, clinical and comforting environment. A personalized experience from the leaders in skin health, plastic surgery and wellness, what more could you ask for?

Angie Scott, Co-Owner and Licensed Aesthetician

Tell us about a time when, despite difficulty, nevertheless you persisted.
In the field of medical aesthetics, typically the business is owned by a physician, so when I first started my business six years ago as a non-physician owner, it was very difficult to get vendors to sell to me because they thought that I wouldn’t be able to generate enough revenue to pay the bills. It didn’t take me very long to prove them wrong!

What was a defining moment in your life?
Definitely when I became a business owner. I feel as though I’ve always been a leader, but I never really saw myself as an entrepreneur. It’s a whole new ball game when you are responsible for other people’s livelihood— failure isn’t an option.

I deal with stress by: exercising and practicing yoga— I love to be upside down!

What advice would you give to the younger you?
Always wear sunscreen!

The one thing I wear everyday is: a topical retinoid before bed. Retinoids are the most researched ingredient in our industry for aging skin. I say, if I could pick one thing (other than sunscreen) that my patients use every single day, it would be an appropriate retinoid for their skin type.

My favorite gadget is: the Elite MPX by CynoSure— This versatile laser is like my magic wand.  I can get rid of spider veins on the legs, broken blood vessels on the face, eliminate brown spots and repair sun damage and banish unwanted hair!

Dr. Marlene Welch, Co-Owner and Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon

What lesson do you wish you had learned sooner? That work-life balance is a myth. There is not balance, there are only priorities. And my family will always be my priority.

Something most people don’t know about me is: I was a Studio Art major as an undergraduate. I was a sculptor and a printmaker.

The last book I read was “The Blue Zones Solution” by Dan Buettner, and the next book I’ll read is “The Willpower Instinct” by Kelly McGonigal.

The most exciting thing on my bucket list is: a trip to Italy with my husband and sons to see Florence, Rome and Tuscany.

The one thing I wear everyday is: A necklace of the Hawaiian sun. I wear it to remind me of the joy I had with my family during a trip to Hawaii in 2014 when for the first time in a decade I completely disconnected from my phone and work for 10 days!

My favorite gadget is: the iRing on the back of my phone. I can hang my phone on my dashboard for using GPS and I can prop it up on my desk for watching videos.

Women-Owned-Business-Toledo-18

Laura’s Framing Place

Laura Osborne, Owner
4400 Heatherdowns Blvd. #9
419-893-7263 | facebook.com/laurasframingplace
We do custom framing— there’s no usual way to frame things. People always just want the cheapest thing, what is that? I like to use multiple colors for mattes and frames. Practically each piece is custom made.

If you could get advice from any woman— living, dead, real or fictional— who would it be and why? Mother Theresa— she could give me great advice on life.

Something most people don’t know about me is: That I sing in the soprano section of my church choir.

My favorite device is: My dust cover trimmer— it neatly cuts the paper on the back of wood frames.

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G & G Safety Supply

Jodie Stearns, Branch Manager
1855 S. Reynolds Rd. | 419-205-9171
g-gsafetysupply.com

G & G Safety Supply carries a complete line of personal safety equipment, including hard hats, protective eyewear, hearing protection, reflective vests, fall prevention, lock out/tag out, gloves and other safety gear.

To work I need: More time! Also, caffeine and dark chocolate close by!

My inspiration comes from: My real-life experiences, my faith and the people that have come into my life.

What advice would you give to the younger you?
Make the best of every day. Don’t worry so much!

The one thing I wear everyday is: My glasses! I just started wearing them a short time ago to read, and now I wear them all the time.

My favorite gadget is: My GPS! I am not the best at maps or driving to new places. I like to know ahead of time where I am going, and having a navigation device helps!

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Miracle Salon & Medi Spa

Jenny Werr, Donna Wells, Lori Smith, Co owners
6634 Summerfield Rd. | Temperance, MI.
734-847-37000 | 
miraclesalonspa.com

The business started over 30 years ago with Donna Wells and her parents, Jim and Sue Desmond. After ten years of expansions, Sue and Jim retired and Donna continued on, transforming the business into a full-service beauty salon and day spa. Now, Donna’s two daughters, Jenny and Lori, continue the family tradition and own the business. After a few years of retirement, Donna jumped back in and opened Miracle Medi Spa, located within Miracle Salon & Spa, in 2011, offering Laser Hair Removal, IPL photo rejuvenation, and other medical grade services performed by certified technicians.

The best piece of advice my mother gave me was:
Donna: “Honesty is the best policy.”
Jenny & Lori: Don’t forget your family… they are your biggest cheerleader and your biggest support!

What lesson from your mother were you most surprised to pass on to your daughter?
Jenny & Lori: 
Don’t expect things to be handed to you… you have to work for your successes in life!

Tell us about a time when, despite difficulty, nevertheless you persisted.
Donna: The recession we went through ten years ago nearly caused us to give up. If it weren’t for the determination of my two daughter carrying on the business we may not be here 30 years later.
Jenny & Lori: Taking over the salon during the recession, we had to completely change our way of thinking.  We partnered with the Summit Salon Consulting and revamped our business model.  They helped us realize we couldn’t run the business the same way our Mom’s generation did and still be successful.

Three generations of women have been involved in Miracle Salon. How has that made the business unique?
Donna: We have guests that have been with us for over 30 years. Our guests eventually become part of our family.
Jenny & Lori: We always said we didn’t want to take over.  When it came down to it, we didn’t want to see this chapter of our life end and decided to continue the legacy.  Lori was five when the salon opened and now we have seen several generations of families come through our doors. Jenny’s teenage children have worked during their high school years and her 12 year old daughter can’t wait to go to nail school.

If you could get advice from any woman— fictional, real, living or past— who would it be, and why?
Donna: Oprah Winfrey…. she gives me so much inspiration.

Tell us about a time when, despite difficulty, nevertheless you persisted.
Donna: The recession we went through ten years ago nearly caused us to give up. If it weren’t for the determination of my two daughter carrying on the business we may not be here 30 years later.
Jenny & Lori: 
Taking over the salon during the recession, we had to completely change our way of thinking.  We partnered with the Summit Salon Consulting and revamped our business model.  They helped us realize we couldn’t run the business the same way our Mom’s generation did and still be successful.

What was a defining moment in your life?
Donna: The day I met my husband, Joe.
Jenny & Lori: 
Buying the salon.  Nine years later, we have learned that through hard work and commitment to growing our staff, we have in turn grown in many ways, both personally and professionally.

My inspiration comes from:
(Jenny & Lori) Our Mom.  She has persevered through so much in life, both personally and in business and has always come out stronger. 

  • Cami Roth Szirotnyak

    Great to see a feature on women-owned businesses, since 40% of the firms in the city are owned by women (according to recent census estimates). I was glad to see a few of my favorite businesses represented. However, I also would have loved to have seen businesses owned or managed by women of color, women with disabilities, or L/T women featured as well. Toledo has rich diversity that we would do well to represent and promote within the topic of female leadership.