2011 Entrepreneur Directory
n this directory, you will find some inspiring people. Many have risked it all to turn their passion into a successful business. Others are capitalizing on a
unique skill to provide for their families. All of them have courageously chosen entrepreneurship as a path toward financial security. Most importantly, they have a lot to offer you, the customer. Our job at the Intersect Fund is to inspire entrepreneurs. More often, though, they inspire us. Many have faced daunting odds to find success, and have created amazing businesses along the way. Within these pages, you will find cutting-edge fashion, artful stone carvings, and mouth-watering culinary confections. But for every entrepreneur who succeeds, there are a dozen being told they don’t have what it takes — that they should just go get a job, that it’s all a waste of time. It shows that becoming an entrepreneur takes more than writing a business plan or getting a loan. It takes a lot of hope. When you get to know the entrepreneurs in this directory, you’ll see what this hope can do. You’ll see the transformative effect that starting a business can have on a life, a family and a community.
2011 photos by Brendan McInerney Catholic Campaign
made possible by For Human Development Working to End Poverty and Injustice in the United States
Rolling Pin Productions
Ro l l i n g P i Pr o d u c t i o nn s
Michelle McFadden-DiNicola, owner
Sweet treats your family will love
le Grain B
When did you start baking?
email: Fro mtheRoll ing phone: 7 32.421.73 Pin@gmail.com 31 H
ndmade with ❤attending I started baking two years ago for neighbors awho were a parenthere in H ighland P ark child class that a friend and I were running in my home. Kids and parents were always excited when I served snacks!
What is your favorite part of the process? I can’t get enough of the tactile aspect of baking. It’s like playtime, all the time.
What is your best-selling product? The Chocolate Coconuts cookie is everyone’s favorite. I think there is some kind of magic that happens when coconut and chocolate combine. Really.
Cookies, Anyone? To order your delicious cookies, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Michelle at (732) 993-1875. For an instant craving, head to Night Hawk Books in Highland Park.
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Jams by Kim Kim Osterhoudt, owner
Sweet, tangy jam like your grandmother made When did you start making jam? I developed a passion for cooking at an early age. Under the tutelage of my mother, I learned how to preserve fruits and vegetables. My grandfather had a bountiful fruit and vegetable garden. He grew green grapes, which he used to make homemade wines. When I was 12, he gave me grapes to make my first jelly. I was instantly hooked. I love making jams.
What is your favorite part of the business? I feel such pride and accomplishment when I look at the beautiful jars of jam I’ve made when I’ve spent a day in the commercial kitchen I use. Turning fresh fruits and vegetables into delicious artisanal jams is my passion.
What is your best-selling product? My best-selling products are my savory jams, in particular my Roasted Garlic and Sweet Onion Jam. I think the flavors are spectacular and it’s a fairly unusual combination.
BUY ONLINE You can purchase these fantastic jams at www.jamsbykim.com.
My Two Sons Rita Simmons, owner
Southern-style seafood at the Englishtown Auction Why did you start your business? I was originally selling designer womenâ€™s clothing in Englishtown. I found that there was no decent place to eat besides the typical hot dog or hamburger stand. So, I decided to take my love of cooking and open a Savannah-style southern seafood eatery and bring variety to Englishtown and its customers.
What is your favorite part of My Two Sons? My favorite part is preparing all the ingredients and cooking the food for my customers. Knowing that my diners are going to enjoy a great meal that I have put much time and effort into is what makes the process worth it.
What is your best-selling product? My best-selling dishes are the catfish and my homemade crab cakes. Both are made fresh and prepared with a special rub that has been in my family for years and makes the dish unlike any other.
ENJOY A SOUTHERN MEAL Visit My Two Sons Southern Seafood cuisine in the blue building at the Englishtown Auction â€” 90 Wilson Ave, Englishtown, NJ.
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Go Granola Ronnie Kirschner & Jo Neal Archer, owners
A crunchy, sweet snack for a healthier life
When did you start making granola? We have been making this granola recipe for more than five years. Others would try our granola and rave about it. With our love for baking and creating new, healthier options for desserts and snacks, we started GoGranola.
What is your favorite part of the process? Just trying something new, whether it be tweaking an ingredient or experimenting with a decadent dessert. Baking is a passion for us and we find the entire process relaxing and enjoyable.
ORDER A BAG Contact Ronnie and Jo Neal at email@example.com to order your granola today.
Sin Fronteras Elvin Sarmiento, owner
A grocer without borders in downtown Jamesburg Why did you start a grocery store? It was always my dream to become a successful businessman. People respect me for my integrity and motivation to help others, which I am doing by providing employment opportunities in my grocery store.
What is your favorite part of the business? I like every aspect of the store; however, I feel particular and deep satisfaction from my customers who appreciate the sincerity and honesty with which I operate my business.
What is next for Sin Fronteras? Our goal is to strengthen our position in the community to the extent where we can offer the best products at reasonable prices.
Next Time Youâ€™rE in TOWN Visit Sin Fronteras at 12 West Railroad Avenue in Jamesburg, NJ.
OQ Coffee Co. Ben Schellack & Evan Gentry, owners
Fresh-roasted coffee beans from around the world Why did you start your business? We decided to pursue coffee after we tasted a straight shot of espresso at Cafe Grumpy in New York City. It was sweet and chocolatey with bright berry flavors — no one would ever describe it as bitter. After that, we bought an espresso machine, then a home roaster, then more coffee gadgets, and we finally decided to try to make money at this rather than spending money. We purchased a San Franciscan roaster and started OQ Coffee.
What is your favorite part of the business? Our favorite part is sharing coffee with other people. We love the “aha!” moment when someone who has downed buckets of Starbucks tastes a fresh roasted, fresh ground, and well-brewed cup of coffee.
What is your best-selling product? Our best-selling product is the Ethiopia Michicha. We would guess that’s because it’s our favorite coffee and people can see our passion when we talk about it.
BUY ONLINE Grab a bag of freshly-roasted Old Queens Coffee Beans at www.OQcoffee.com.
FOOD (& DRINK)
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Carella’s Hallmark and Chocolates Connie Dalton, owner
Rich, sweet treats that are a family tradition Why did you start your business? I began working at Carella’s Hallmark and Chocolates when I was a senior in high school. At the time the business belonged to my family. It was very exciting and fun to be in the retail industry.
What is your favorite part of the business? I love being my own boss and making decisions based on my knowledge of the customer, the demographics and the trends in the retail industry. I also really enjoy working with the public and greeting each customer and making sure they have an enjoyable time shopping in my store.
What is your best-selling product? Our best-selling product is our chocolate. We manufacture much of our chocolates at our location, plus we offer a variety of other manufacturers that produce quality chocolate. We now also offer sugar free and low sodium treats.
ORDER In-STORE OR ONLINE Carella’s Hallmark and Chocolates is located at 2503 Nottingham Way in Mercerville, NJ. Order online at www.carellaschocolates.com.
Karmic Stone Janis Blayne-Paul, owner
Artful stones for your home and garden What got you interested in stone carving? As an architect with great interest in historically significant, ancient structures, I have always been drawn towards stone especially stone carved facades and building details.
What is your favorite part of your business? I enjoy selecting the appropriate stone for each design and then the actual carving of the stone.
What is your best-selling product? While there are many images using yogic and meditative themes, people are inclined to suggest “custom” projects that are meaningful to them — they make for unique gifts for a specific person and that concept is very popular. Of the yogic and meditative images, the “om” symbol is very popular. So is the abstract person in meditation. They are calming images and remind people to be mindful and slow down.
A GIFT THEY’ll NEVER FORGET Order your Karmic Stone today by visiting www.karmicstone.com.
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De RiChĂŠek Gretchen Campbell, owner
Pillows and backpacks with inspiration sewn in Why did you start your business? I was inspired to make the Message Pillow and Message Bakpak to help the New Brunswick Health Sciences Technology High School raise money for its graduating classes. I continued by designing my business to help schools and nonprofit organizations generate funds.
What is your favorite part of the business? My favorite part of the process is the finished product. I love when my inspirations are complete. It gives me such great joy to know that a design began and finished in me and through me.
What is your best-selling product? My best-selling product is my Message Pillow. A Message Pillow is personalized with whatever special message a customer wishes. It can last for generations.
ONE OF A KIND To your order your own Message Pillow or Message Bakpak, call (732) 253-9028 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Keepsakes by Faith Faith Saunders, owner
Unique greeting cards that show you care When did you start your business? In fall 2006, I attended a party to learn how to make handmade holiday cards. After making a couple of designs I became bored and out of nowhere started to create my own designs. People soon started to ask me to make cards and the rest is history. Keepsakes by Faith was born in March 2007.
What is your favorite part of the business? I have two favorites. The look on a person’s face when they open an envelope and take out my card is a part I thoroughly enjoy. This is followed by idea generation. I am inspired by nature, so my mind is always racing with ideas. I doodle a lot and sometimes I create new designs during the process.
What is your best-selling product? The fluttering butterfly cards. And they happen to be my favorite. They are unique because the butterfly wings seem flat at first glimpse but the can be lifted to give a fluttering effect.
ORDER ONLINE Visit www.keepsakesbyfaith.com to purchase your very own specialty cards.
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Skin Arise Tracey Amadi & Janice Francisca, owners
Body scrubs and oils to refresh your skin Why did you start your business? Janice: I started making the products about 10 years ago because I always loved using scrubs but had a hard time finding one that worked well with my sensitive skin. I found some recipes online and started to experiment with different mixtures and it became a hobby making them. Tracey: I had been using Janiceâ€™s scrubs for quite some time and knew that others would love the scrub and approached Janice about going into business together.
What is your favorite part of the business? We really enjoy putting the final product together. After making the scrubs and oils seeing them all packaged and complete makes the process worth it.
What is your best-selling product? The Salty Margarita Body scrub is one that customers really enjoy. The scent allows them to feel as if they are somewhere tropical.
ORDER ONLINE Visit www.skinarise.com to order your scented body scrub or body oil today.
Stephanie Renée Stephanie Willis, owner
Handbags with local design, universal style Why did you start your business? I always had an interest in sewing and designing clothes and bags since I was a little girl. When I started designing clothes for friends and family I wasn’t comfortable with fitting and sizing people because everyone’s shapes are different. So I got the idea of designing handbags since they are “one size fits all” and a little less challenging to perfect when compared to designing custom clothing.
What is your favorite part of your business? Designing the concept and logistics on how to bring the design to life. I also love picking out the fabrics and laying them out to get an idea of how they will compliment each other. Being able to create a unique design that is captivating to customers is such a great reward.
HOW TO BUY To pick up a one of a kind bag contact Stephanie at SRW1977@gmail.com or call (609) 712-3707.
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d.Saks Delicia Alarcon, owner
From around the world to your shoulder Why did you start your business? While living in Paraguay, my mother took my brother and I to visit different towns around the country. Through our travels we came across artisans that their products were overwhelmingly beautiful and distinct which motivated me to want to market their product around the world. I chose the bag instead of any other handmade product because the â€œSakâ€? is a unique purse that can be woven into many different patterns of vibrant colors.
What is your favorite part of the business? My favorite part of the process is working and meeting new people when I market d.Saks. I love spreading the concept and ideology of Fair Trade while promoting handmade products.
What is your best-selling product? My best-selling product is the Rainbow Extravaganza pattern in all the different styles. The rainbow pattern is popular because of its vibrant colors.
ORDER ONLINE Purchase your d.Saks bag at www.dsaks.biz.
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Clayton Insulation Noel Castellanos, owner
Expert service from an insulation pro Why did you start your business? I was looking for a job that would help support my family and was having a hard time finding the right match. Then one day I came upon an opening to work for a company that installed insulation and felt it was the right move for not only me but also my family.
What is your favorite part of the business? My favorite part has to be interacting and meeting my customerâ€™s expectations when finishing a job. Knowing that I made a customer happy with my work is so gratifying as well as great for my business.
Were you formally trained? Yes. When my previous company hired me, they trained me on all the techniques for installing insulation.
GET A QUOTE For a quote, call Noel at (732) 558-3432.
Studio A Photography Victoria Marshall, owner
Photgrapher for life’s special moments What got you interested in photography? I became interested in photography when I was forced to choose an elective during my senior year of high school. I instantly fell in love with photography.
Did you have any formal training? Yes, I have been formally trained. I started in high school, and then I majored in photography in college. I’ve also recently taken classes at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City.
What is your best-selling product? My best-selling product is the photo-book. It’s a customized, hardcover book filled with all of the photos a customer chooses from his or her special event.
HOW TO BUY Contact Victoria at (609) 456-5998 or email email@example.com to schedule your photo shoot.
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About... The Intersect Fund is a non-profit organization that empowers entrepreneurs to start and grow strong businesses so they can build assets and spark dramatic change in their communities. We provide business training, small loans, and access to markets for low-wealth business owners in urban New Jersey. Headquartered in New Brunswick, NJ, the Intersect Fund employs innovative strategies to help our clients achieve business success. In our first two years of operation, we have served more than 150 entrepreneurs. The 15 entrepreneurs profiled in this directory represent a vand the clients the Intersect Fund serves. With your help, we can connect more entrepreneurs to the resources they need to succeed. Donations to the Intersect Fund, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, are tax-deductable.
For more information, visit us at www.intersectfund.org.
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The â€œGraduateâ€? stamp indicates that the entrepreneur profiled has completed a three-month course in business planning. We teach the basics of marketing, finance, and operations.
Want to start or grow a business?
Are you the next big thing? Weâ€™re waiting to hear from you.
109 Church Street New Brunswick, NJ 08901 (732) 447-1324
made possible by
Catholic Campaign For Human Development Working to End Poverty and Injustice in the United States