Black-owned businesses help feed the Corridor economy

Robert Hundley

Tasha Lard is the proprietor of JD Splendor Source in Iowa Town, which offers a assortment of hair solutions and equipment like wigs. (Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

Tiny firms are the heartbeat of the group and push our nearby overall economy. As a photojournalist, I feel it is significant for our audience see on their own in the web pages of our newspaper and web site, and to establish with the stories we are telling.

My aim with this portrait sequence is to produce visibility and illustration even though connecting the community with a large range of Black-owned organizations and highlighting their function and commitment to building careers and strengthening the financial state.

I hope to go on this photo series and advertise folks of coloration and their companies. If you know of a company in the Corridor that must be highlighted, e mail savannah.blake@thegazette.

Tasha Lard, owner of JD Splendor Supply in Iowa City

Tasha Lard, owner of JD Beauty Supply in Iowa City.
(Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

Tasha Lard is the operator of JD Beauty Offer in Iowa Town, which provides a range of hair goods and extras such as wigs. The retail outlet is a family members-owned small business and they have just one added aspect-time team member to enable out.

Lard is also a founder of the Range Marketplace that will help endorse firms owned by individuals of shade. She acquired the notion to open up a natural beauty provide keep when she identified that more substantial merchants this sort of as Walmart and Walgreens did not cater to all hair styles.

“Being a Black lady and a mother it was very disheartening to not have hair treatment supplies required to keep my family’s hair,” she recollects.

Now two several years into the small business she says she enjoys being capable to meet up with new men and women and develop a rapport with customers. When she has confronted problems hoping to uncover a spot to create her enterprise such as racism and stereotyping, Lard has now set up a company that presents girls of all races a spot to uncover hair care solutions for them and their loved ones.

JD Splendor Offer, 1067 Freeway 6 E, Iowa Metropolis, is open up seven days a week.

Chef Gabrielle Williams, owner of Food Prep Queen in Iowa Metropolis

Chef Gabrielle Williams, Meal Prep Queen in Iowa City.
(Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

Chef Gabrielle Williams has been in business enterprise as Meal Prep Queen considering the fact that March of 2021.

Her adore for cooking began at the age of 8 when she viewed cooking shows and preferred to recreate what she saw. She continued to cook as she acquired older and would put together foods for her spouse and children, buddies and co-personnel who gave her favourable suggestions and inspired her to capitalize on her cooking.

As a private coach, Williams also preferred a way to provide her customers balanced meals without the need of sacrificing flavor. She will make a range of dishes, but suggests her most well-known types are her hen wings and her cheeseburger egg rolls.

“I take pleasure in cooking and building food stuff for other people. Foodstuff to me is like artwork operate,” she claims.

Just after cooking on the aspect for a year, she established an LLC and started doing work gatherings, meal prepping for consumers and offering own chef providers. Whilst she at this time takes advantage of her home kitchen area or celebration areas to do her cooking, Gabrielle claims she is functioning toward getting a place to base all her companies.

Her chef services can be identified at

Candice Luter, operator of Candice Luter Artwork and Interiors in Cedar Rapids

Candice Luter, owner and designer of Candice Luter Art and Interiors based in Cedar Rapids.
(Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

Candice Luter is the owner and designer of Candice Luter Artwork and Interiors, which is a little batch producer of customized furnishings and dwelling decor based in Cedar Rapids that she started off in 2019.

She prospects an all women of all ages group and has 6 section-time employees that support her with the procedure of the business enterprise. All her merchandise are designed to buy. She obtained her plan for her company when she obtained her 1st home in 2018 and was in will need of wall artwork to furnish her bungalow. Just after developing her possess artwork she made a decision to list them on several selling platforms and her organization took off from there. As a business enterprise lady she says she strives to be the boss she normally wished she experienced.

“It’s significant for my personnel to place them selves and their families 1st before they walk in the door. That is why we inspire transparency and flexibility mainly because I know what it is like to have a bad day and to be a performing mom,” Luter says.

When it arrives to aiding out small enterprises in Japanese Iowa she claims she would like to see the group donating hrs of services for community smaller businesses that are earning strides.

“Not a hand out, a hand up — any one small enterprise succeeding is a get for all of us,” she suggests. In the foreseeable future she hopes to make connections with even larger marketplaces to open up extra doors for her organization and to function on continuing to collaborate with other manufacturers and subcontractors. Her goods can be found on her Instagram website page @candiceluter as perfectly as at and on Etsy as “shopcandiceluter.”

Felix and Omolola Anaman, Anaman Concierge Expert services in Coralville

Felix Anaman and his wife, Omolola Anaman, of Anaman Concierge Services in Coralville.
(Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

Felix Anaman, with his spouse, Omolola Anaman, in their Coralville place of work space is owner and CEO of Anaman Concierge Products and services and has been in business since Might of 2017.

His corporation presents transportation options to hectic households, folks and establishments.All those companies include things like standard chauffeured outings, wedding ceremony transportation and Hawkeye game working day shuttles. He claims they are hoping to increase wheelchair accessible solutions and non-crisis expert services in the long term.

The concept for his company very first arrived from Omolola, who prompt a business enterprise tailor-made to enable active family members with transportation difficulties.

“We observed that the airport transfer automobile service was substantially essential in the place. Without the need of hesitation we started and now we are a primary transportation supplier in the place,” he suggests.

The organization took about two decades for him to start looking at quantities that authorized him to employ extra drivers and office assistance personnel.

During the height of COVID-19 circumstances, the range of rides a 7 days considerably declined, but he was equipped to preserve his small business afloat. In advance of the pandemic, they experienced a staff members of 30, but now they at present have 19 including entire-time and part-time group associates.

“We take care of our drivers quite properly, which contributes to our achievement tale. In actuality, we spend extra than all the limo businesses in the region,” Anaman states.

Anaman Concierge Solutions are accessible at or calling at (319) 382-5839.

Clif Johnson, proprietor and supervisor of ICOR Boxing Club in Iowa City

Clif Johnson, owner and manager of ICOR Boxing Club in Iowa City.
(Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

Clif Johnson is operator and manager of ICOR Boxing Club in Iowa Town, which provides lessons to equally the young and aged as nicely aiding regional boxers — aggressive and beginner — teach.

“Our aim is to reinforce the unique in order to improve the entire group,” he states.

Johnson was a U.S. Maritime and aimed to convey those people main values into his organization including building self-confidence, grit and unity. Just after transferring to Iowa from Philadelphia, Johnson preferred to open up a gymnasium with inspiration coming from his father.

“Watching the strength of my father’s health club and impact encouraged me to check out and do improved right here in Iowa City with my individual one of a kind ordeals and attitude,” he recollects.

ICOR Boxing Club has been in company considering that 2000, but Johnson took over in 2013. It moved to a location on Highway 1 in November 2021 and now has four part-time employees.

As a small-small business owner, Johnson enjoys that he gets to express himself freely and is producing a positive impression on his town. When he has seen loads of success, he has also experienced to prevail over the negative stigmas of a brutal and poisonous surroundings that usually overshadows boxing gyms.

“We have demonstrated that boxing is for anyone. From small children battling Parkinson’s disorder to champion stage fighters and anything in between,” he states.

Johnson strives to make the activity of boxing available to everybody in the community as a result of a not-for-profit that will help qualified children in want and is attainable by way of the donations from the community.

ICOR Boxing Club is at 391 Highland Ave., Iowa Town.

Cindy Shaw, owner of Renewal Skin and Human body in Iowa City

Cindy Shaw, a licensed aesthetician and owner of Renewal Skin and Body in Iowa City.
(Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

Cindy Shaw, a certified aesthetician, has been in her present location with her organization, Renewal Pores and skin and Human body in Iowa City, due to the fact 2012.

Her pores and skin salon focuses on skin therapies and makeup application. She is the only whole-time employee and has one particular section-time assistant, with options to employ the service of a portion-time or comprehensive-time therapeutic massage therapist.

She to start with observed her curiosity in beauty care when she grew to become a consultant for Mary Kay advertising makeup in 1995. While a analysis placement at the University of Iowa in 2009, she felt known as to do one thing different with her existence.

“My connection with God had gotten to the stage exactly where I was praying and asking him, ‘What is my purpose?’ He stored pushing me towards using my items to help folks,” Shaw claims.

She entered the Salon Skilled Academy in 2010 and quickly decided to open her possess salon. Her expertise being her very own boss through Mary Kay gave her the self-confidence to go out on her very own.

At initially, she hardly compensated herself as she reinvested all her earnings back into the business, which include the ideas. As her shopper base grew and she managed her revenue frugally, she was equipped to get step away from needing to borrow from the lender.

When it comes to defining achievement, Shaw finds that there is a selection of channels she achieves good results — no matter if that is earning the believe in and loyalty of her clients or acquiring earnings advancement every single yr.

“Renewal is a put exactly where men and women of all ages, races and sexes can occur and practical experience renewal of their exterior as properly as their insides,” she says.

As a compact-business proprietor she wants the community to know that brick-and-mortar places these as hers exist only with patronage from the community.

Her products and services can be found on line at

Chef Gabrielle Williams has been in company due to the fact March of 2021. She provides catering and non-public chef services in the Iowa City location as a result of her business Meal Prep Queen. (Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

Candice Luter is the owner and designer of Candice Luter Art and Interiors, which is a little batch manufacturer of tailor made furnishings and house decor that she started in 2019 and based mostly in Cedar Rapids. (Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

Felix Anaman, with his spouse, Omolola Anaman, is owner and CEO of Anaman Concierge Solutions primarily based in Coralville and has been in business because May perhaps of 2017. (Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

Clif Johnson is owner and manager of ICOR Boxing Club in Iowa Metropolis, which offers lessons to the two the youthful and old as effectively serving to community boxers — aggressive and novice — prepare. (Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

Cindy Shaw, a certified aesthetician, has been in her recent spot with her enterprise, Renewal Skin and Entire body in Iowa Metropolis, due to the fact 2012. (Savannah Blake/The Gazette)

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