Barking Up the Right Tree

When you have an opportunity to choose your next step in life, why not choose what you love and are passionate about? That’s exactly what Deb Ward did six years ago when she found herself needing employment. She devised a plan that combined her love for dogs with earning a living.

Acting on her vision and dream, Cedarburg Pet Care was born. But despite the feel-good nature of the business’ premise, it hasn’t all been rosy. Growing her business and developing a client base has meant many long, tiring hours for Deb on her road to success. The result? A thriving pet care business that currently provides services for more than 300 families with pets in the Ozaukee County area.

Based on her business plan, Deb has developed many facets that all relate to her love and passion for pets.

Cedarburg Pet Care:

-       provides a safe place for dogs to play during the day in a structured, nurturing environment. This is a wonderful alternative to your pet staying home alone while you’re at work, not to mention they love being there and come home tired after a full day of playing with their friends.

-       has overnight boarding spots (which tend to fill up fast, especially during high-peak weeks). Your doggie gets to go “home” for the time you’re away, as your dog is accepted into the Ward family fold during its stay in Deb’s home.

-       visits your home to assist when you’re gone for an extended period-of-time, are gone for long hours in a single day, or for when you’re home but merely need assistance. And the visits aren’t just restricted to dogs! The pet sitters also care for cats, fish, birds, guinea pigs, and even a ferret a time or two!

-       breeds Newfoundland pups. These pups are nurtured and socialized in a safe home setting until they travel to their new forever home.

The growth of Deb’s business from an idea to the successful, thriving service it is today is an example of what you can achieve when you set your sights high and chase your dream!

Please feel free to explore her small business success story at

Are you interested in having a Newfie pup as your next companion? You can visit to find out more.


Need a Tune Up?

If you’re feeling like your body needs a tune-up, contact Muscle + Movement Therapy (MMT) and speak with Dr. Jeffrey Sergent or Peter Rogers. Working in tandem, they will provide a holistic approach to maintaining your health by using chiropractors, physical therapists, personal trainers, and massage therapists to help with your personal realignment and have you feeling like new!

Having been colleagues and coworkers for several years, and recognizing an opportunity to provide top-notch services in a community that values them, Dr. Sergent and Peter opened MMT in Cedarburg. Selecting a location that would allow them to offer their full slate of services was essential in bringing their vision to life. Part of the beauty of owning your own business is making decisions like these for yourself. The environment that they have created at MMT provides a relaxing and inviting atmosphere when you arrive. It feels more like sitting in a living room than a waiting room.

Their great location, their approach, and their kind yet professional personalities have helped them grow. In just a short time they’ve developed a solid client base in Ozaukee County. Working with professionals like these has been an inspiration for me to persevere in my own business development.

You can learn more about their services and their approach at

If you want to see the fun behind the scenes as Dr. Sergent and Peter build their new enterprise and/or if you’re interested in purchasing one of their massage or chiropractic specials, please visit

Milwaukee Bucks Arena Supplier

When you have the desire to succeed, you eventually find a way. After his first attempt to open his welding business in 2001 didn’t progress as he had hoped, Carl Ward continued to work full time, while trying to develop a client base part time. It wasn’t until 2010 that Carl had the ability to devote the time and attention that was necessary to bring Ward Welding and Fabrication, Inc. to life. And that he did!

As a minority-owned business, a Milwaukee location was necessary for the certification process. With this knowledge, his search for a home began. After a lot of research and a bit of luck due to a vacating tenant, he chose the Port of Milwaukee on Jones Island. Being conveniently located for several of his clients made the decision to locate there ideal.

Recognizing that this was not a one-man operation, Carl hired his first full-time employee immediately to work side by side with him, along with a part-time office staff. Initially, landing about 30 contracts in 2010, today, he has more than doubled in size, employing three full-time shop workers and two part-time office staff, and landing about 55 contracts.

Carl’s perseverance and his commitment to complete a job from start to finish, with capabilities ranging from engineering and design through fabrication and erection, has earned him some top projects working for Beachlauncher, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District (MMSD). Recently, Ward Welding has also become a materials supplier for the new Milwaukee Bucks Arena, proving that good things come to those who persevere!

There are many paths to small business ownership and timelines to achieve success. This is yet another great example of the perseverance that it takes as a small business owner to not give up on your dream. I am proud to be associated with such hard working small business owners.

If you’re interested in learning more about Ward Welding and Fabrication, Inc., please visit or



Nanny Knows Best

The path to becoming a small business owner is varied. Part of the skill of today’s small-business owner is recognizing an opportunity and acting on it. That’s exactly what Jen Thomas did when she acquired A Perfect Fit Nanny Agency. After many years of being a nanny herself, Jen seized an opportunity that was before her and made the move from caring for children as a nanny to owning an agency.

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Because of her years of experience, Jen knows what’s important in a nanny relationship. She understands firsthand both the needs of the families seeking care for their children, as well as the nannies who provide the care. This blend of knowledge and experience makes Jen the perfect candidate to turn to when families are looking for care. Having been voted the “Best of Our Valley” in 2017 helps, too!

Let’s face it: Finding quality care for your children can be daunting and difficult. But using the services of an award-winning agency, whose owner has the experience you’re seeking, can provide you peace of mind that you’ll find the right nanny to welcome into your family!

Small-business success stories come to life when you least expect them!

If you would like to learn more, please visit or



The Road to Success …

It’s unclear just how many start-up businesses fail. There’s no doubt that trying to start your own company isn’t easy. There are many struggles and obstacles that may prevent you from reaching the success you desire. However, perseverance and hard work are basic elements you’ll need to assist you in reaching your goal. And for those who succeed? They become part of the recent statistics of small businesses that account for 54 percent of all sales in the U.S. and provide 55 percent of all jobs, according to US Small Business Administration.

Small-business owners make up a diverse group. The population they represent varies widely. They are the young entrepreneurial spirits seeking to fulfill their dreams; they are the corporate employees who lost their jobs and are trying something different; they are older adults looking for something more rewarding or challenging as they age; they are the risk-takers who see an opportunity and seize it.

Over the coming weeks, I’ll be sharing several stories about small businesses and their owners, highlighting their struggles and their successes. Hopefully, as these stories unfold, you’ll be able to visualize the small-business statistics in America coming to life or relate to the stories I’m sharing. I feel fortunate to be a part of this group and, also, to be able to work with them to help them succeed.

You can read more about small-business statistics in America by visiting or