Harper College

SBDC Success Stories

Achievements Through SBDC 

Eric Emery - Cool Head, LLC

Coolhead Welding Helmet

Welders regularly face exposure to dangerous fumes in their work environment, which is often in an enclosed space. According to OSHA, depending on the type of fumes and length of exposure, a welder may be at risk of injuries that include eye, nose and throat irritation; dizziness and nausea; damage to lungs, kidneys, and nervous system; certain types of cancer; and asphyxiation....

Caryn Mitchell, Founder of Calliope Design

Calliope Design

Pablo Picasso once said, “The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.” Artist and entrepreneur Caryn Mitchell creates art that not only awakens souls, it makes them sing. She believes that art should inspire and spark joy as well as transform a space. In addition to creating stunning custom works, Caryn has begun to expand her palette by offering retail pieces. She also brings her artistic passion to identity design, designing branding in harmony with her clients’ corporate culture and goals....

Ergonomic Bottle Caps, LLC ergobottlecaps.com

Pack of Ergo Openers

Approximately 50 billion water bottles per year are sold in the U.S., yet many people are unable to open them due to manual dexterity issues. Andrew Ziccardi realized this on a sweltering day in 2010, when an elderly woman asked him to open a water bottle for her. The realization sparked a quest to invent a product that would empower people to easily twist off the small lids. In 2015, Andrew launched Ergonomic Bottle Caps, LLC, with its flagship consumer product, ErgoOpenerTM, available on Amazon as well as in stores in Illinois, Arizona and Ohio....

Easy Signing

Debbie Lawrence

Hearing loss currently affects an estimated 48 million people in the United States alone. The World Health Organization projects that by 2050, 2.5 billion people in the world will have some degree of hearing loss. At least 700 million people—that’s one in ten of us—will require hearing rehabilitation. Debbie Lawrence, founder of Easy Signing, knows these statistics all too well. In fact, for a while, she was one of those statistics. At the age of twenty-seven, Debbie was temporarily blind and deaf from the results of viral encephalitis and meningitis. This gave her a unique perspective of living without sight and sound, fueling her passion to create innovative ways of developing communication without barriers....

Beauty By Juliette

Juliette Molina

To say that COVID-19 was a global game-changer would be the understatement of a lifetime. Businesses of all types have faced unprecedented operational challenges and economic losses; particularly those in the service industry. JPMorgan Chase, in its article, “Small Business Finances in Illinois during the COVID-19 Pandemic” cited personal service firms as having been the hardest hit, with a negative revenue growth rate worse than that of the restaurant industry. Now, imagine the impact on a business that literally provides face-to-face service. Beauty professionals found themselves in a worst-case-scenario, with their industry all but shut down due to the pandemic. Confronted by this dire challenge, veteran freelance makeup artist Juliette Molina Bundhund launched Beauty By Juliette, a new business that would not only survive, but thrive. ...

Nutritional Decadence

Andrea Pedersen of Nutritional Decadence

Many people want to eat healthier foods, but it’s so hard to give up the decadent foods that we all love. Andrea Pedersen saw this trend as an opportunity to sell the unique chocolate syrup she had developed and start her own food business, Nutritional Decadence. In 2020, Andrea launched Cocolasses® on Amazon and through her own e-commerce website....

Ergonomic Solutions

Ergonomic Solutions logo

Ergonomic Solutions – “where the office meets the road”! Nancy and Mark Wunderlich design their mobile office spaces so that employees can work efficiently, in a comfortable space that doesn’t compromise their well-being. There’s no need to precariously balance that valuable laptop on top of the car when you have a fully functioning office space in your vehicle....

Elite Command Junk Hauling

Elite Command Junk Hauling logo

Sarah Mawhorr wanted two things from her career. First, she wanted to be in a profession that fit with her personal life, and second, she wanted to be the one making the rules. Sarah’s solution… start her own business! The catch was that to launch the business, Sarah would need to start from scratch....

Honey with Style and Sweet Cyndee's Bees

Frank Moriarty owner of Honey with Style and Sweet Cyndees Bees

Creamed honey is similar to jams and jellies in that it’s very spreadable and pairs well with items like toast, bagels, and croissants. But creamed honey has a more butter-like texture. If you’ve never tried creamed honey, you can find Frank & Cyndee at various craft fairs and farmers’ markets around the area....

Salario Senior Care

Daniellah Salario owner of Salario Senior Care

Many families have experienced how difficult it can be to care for elderly family and friends. Trying to do it all yourself can be emotionally and physically challenging. But the alternative of moving someone out of their home is often not an appealing option. To assist seniors and their families, Daniellah Salario decided to start her own home care business....

2axend

2axend logo

Corey Axelrod is well acquainted with the challenges and biases that people who are deaf and hard of hearing face; he himself is a member of that community. Even though cultural diversity and inclusion are values that most businesses espouse, many of them are not properly equipped to create equitable and inclusive experiences for those who are deaf and hard of hearing. Corey Axelrod founded 2axend to help institutions implement policies and practices that are responsive to the needs of that community....

Planti Meals

Planti Meals logo

Are you are trying to eat healthier, but find that it’s a challenge because healthy meals can take more time to prepare? Then Planti Meals is for you! Planti Meals offers a delicious menu derived from a plant-based diet. All Planti Meal dishes are vegan and use organic produce, grains, and spices. Plus, they are gluten-free and contain no preservatives or oils. Planti Meals can be delivered to your home or office for lunch, or you can pick one up at select Chicago area retailers....

Wrapperoo

PJ McGuire owner of Wrapperoo

If you’re like most people, your morning routine is probably a bit hectic. Anything that could help simplify things would be an improvement. Wrapperoo might be just what you’re looking for! Wrapperoo is a hair towel that easily transforms into a water and heat resistant styling cape. It’s the all-in-one solution to protect your skin and clothes from those annoying drips and spills. Sort of like the Swiss Army Knife of your hair and beauty routine!...

CarNewba Detailing

Zaia Dinkha owner of CarNewba Detailing

A vehicle is a major investment. Having it detailed by a professional is a great way to maximize the life of your vehicle. However, for most people, it isn’t easy to find time during the day to drop off your car somewhere for detailing. Just have CarNewba come to you! CarNewba is a mobile automotive detailing service that offers high quality at a competitive price with maximum convenience. Appointments can be scheduled at your home or even your office....

Brazil Express Churrasco Grill

Front-facing picture of Ana Santos-Vitelo and her husband standing in their restaurant, Brazil Express Churrasco Grill.

When Ana Santos-Vitelo saw a void in the Brazilian food scene, she wanted to fill it. She and her husband did just that when they opened Brazil Express Churrasco Grill in May 2012 in Schaumburg. A casual steakhouse and affordable alternative to other Brazilian restaurants, Brazil Express offers a pleasant, family-friendly atmosphere and extensive selection of Brazilian fire-grilled meats, salads, side dishes and desserts. ...

Last Updated: 12/14/23