Success Stories

Double D Family Mat Shop - Dale Goetz

Dale Goetz grew up working with his brothers and father at the family feedlot in Park, Kansas. “My father was an ‘order buyer’ (cattle broker) in the area. When Goetz started his own feedlot business just outside Park (Kansas) in 1993, little did he know that his penchant for tinkering would lead to a new family business that exports its innovative products to faraway places like Canada and Australia. Today, the Double D Family Mat Shop, Inc. produces mats made from used tires that that help prevent cattle from slipping and being injured at feedlots and farms. The livestock mats reduce noise, which calms the cattle, and reduces the risk of injury when the cattle are moved on hard surfaces like concrete. The company also produces a similar mat that helps prevent soil erosion. The innovative livestock and anti-erosion mats are made from re-purposed used tires, which make them environmentally friendly. 

Eureka Moment

Goetz’s inspiration to create livestock mats from car... Read More

Overstock Art employee stretching a hand-painted artwork piece

What started as an experiment selling hand-painted replicas of original artwork online, has turned into an award winning e-commerce retailer OverstockArt.com that is based in Wichita, Kansas.

While David Sasson was selling refurbished personal computers in Wichita in the late 1990’s, his brother was selling paintings in California. One day, his brother mentioned that he had found a vendor that was selling inexpensive, hand painted replicas of a few famous pieces of artwork. Seeing a potential sales opportunity, the two brothers decided to test their idea of selling the hand-painted replicas on the auction website uBid.com. “In hindsight, those first hand-painted replicas were not very good – as far as their quality was concerned – but, we wanted to test what the market would pay for them using the auction website,” said Sasson. “We were surprised by what people were willing to pay, and it went from there.”

Using the connections Sasson’s friend had in China, they were... Read More

When Amber Haag was in pharmacy school she was very active in the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) and always had an interest in independent pharmacy and ownership.

She knew that owning and practicing at her own pharmacy was the right path.

“I worked for one of the chain pharmacies for a couple of summers and while I enjoyed that experience I certainly knew that I preferred independent pharmacy and that’s where my heart was.  I very much enjoyed seeing something that needs done or a service we could provide to meet the needs of the community and being able to do something about it right away – versus going thru the corporate ladder chain.

Through NCPA and school, I met so many independent pharmacists that were great leaders and made such a difference in their respective communities.  I have also always had an interest in the financial aspects of business so pharmacy ownership seemed natural and has always been a dream of mine.”

After... Read More

Prairie Horizons Studio for the Creative Arts

After almost 20 years of preparation, the time was right for Tana and Tommy Davis to act on their dream of opening a small business that serves as an art studio and creative space for children and adults in Chapman, Kansas. Prairie Horizons Studio for the Creative Arts offers creative arts classes and workshops. The space also serves as a gallery where Tana and other artists can exhibit and sell their works, and provide an event space where people can host private parties.

Managing a successful small business takes good planning, passion and resources. Tana and Tommy Davis knew the time was right when Tommy, First Sergeant (1SG), retired from 21 years of service in the Army in the fall of 2016.

As part of the Department of Defense’s Transition Assistance Program (TAP) for service members, Tommy participated in the Boots To Business program at Fort Riley in September 2016. Boots to Business is an entrepreneurial education and training program offered by the U.S. Small... Read More

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