After walking away from a 15-year career the restaurant industry in 2015, James Stevens is now working for himself.
He first started mold remediation business Dog Gone Mold, then followed with Dog Gone Junk, a trash removal venture he started in 2017 with his brother, Dominic. Dog Gone Mold has grown to 11 full-time employees from its start with just Stevens and two part-time employees. Stevens says Dog Gone Mold’s revenue last year tripled from the close of its first year.
He has volunteered at homeless shelters for years and serves on the board for the newly formed Middle of the Road Drop-In Shelter & Recovery Center, a nonprofit that provides street outreach for the homeless.
What was your first job? A bus boy. By the time I was 15, they gave me the nickname general manager.
What are you doing to make the Ozarks better? My wife and I donate to many local organizations to help the homeless and the domestically abused.
What about your job would shock people/clients? The amount of mold and debris we find in crawl spaces every day is pretty amazing.
Have you ever met a celebrity? Artists Selena Gomez, Jessica and Ashlee Simpson, Coolio and Salt-N-Pepa, DJ Diplo, ESPN analyst Chris Mortensen, NFL coaches Dick Vermeil and Doug Pederson, and NFL owner Jerry Jones. I worked in the restaurant industry … and I have a good friend who has worked in radio.
Cuban cuisine arrived on C-Street with the opening of La Habana Vieja; independent brokerage Gateway Real Estate opened its first office; and a veteran of the restaurant industry invested in her first food truck.
Barak Hill gives advice based on what he learned from the COVID-19 pandemic and how it affected his business. He says we should all have a backup plan ready to use.
Sandy Higgins, owner of the Crackerjack Shack, recommends the book "The E-Myth Mastery" by Michael E Gerber. She says it changed the course of how she runs her business.
Aaron York describes the work culture he tries to foster at Donco3 and why he attributes to it a part of Donco3's success. Rachel York is a co-owner of Donco3 and Aaron is the General Superintendent.
Hollie Elliott, executive director of the Dallas County Economic Development Group, explains how local schools factor into business decisions and affect a local community.
Rachel Barks, owner of Artistree Pottery, says an important lesson she learned was not to over-expand and to do her research before hand. She gives examples from her experience as a startup business owner.
Jim and Debbie Meinsen own TCI Graphics, and are now celebrating 50 years of business. Jim Meinsen takes some time to explain his philosophy on debt, and how to stay out of it.
Caleb Scott, owner and coach of Queen City Insane Asylum semi-professional football, says the early grind was hard, but it was worth it. The team is in their second season carrying a national ranking of number 2 in the NFA IDFL.
Barak Hill, local musician and entrepreneur, tells about his switch to livestreaming in 2020. He says it was a necessary move, but also not an easy one.
Jessica Burkland, a SCORE mentor and an instructor at the MSU Department of Management, gives us a rundown of the non-profit organization SCORE. SCORE stands for Service Corps of Retired Executives and offers free consultation and advice to business owners.
Hollie Elliott, the executive director of the Dallas County Economic Development Group, discusses some of the ways helping small town businesses is different than in larger cities. The Dallas County Economic Development Group is a 501(c)(3) non-profit aimed at helping local existing and new businesses in the county.