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A Collection of Small Business Profiles

We profiled four different Skokie based businesses in November: Jack's Restaurant, Kaufman's Deli, Dengeos and American Hoarders. If you missed them, now's the chance to check out how these owners became their own boss.

Last month, we profiled four Skokie small businesses, some of which were nominated from our readers via our Facebook page. We thoguht we'd put that collection together in one piece. The profiles look at the journey each small business owner took to becoming their own boss. 

A beloved deli -

With Kaufman's facing their first grand opening in several decades, we decided to profile them first.  

Kaufman’s started a new chapter in the store’s history about one year following the fire that destroyed the Dempster Street store. The new era for the deli and bakery is reopened its doors on Nov. 5.

“It has changed me,” Dworkin said reflecting on the past year. “It has given me a tremendous dose of not being in control of my world. It forced me to be patient with some things and I am not really a patient person, but I didn’t have a choice.”

Check out the story here: A New Era For Kaufman's Starts This Monday

It's always packed -

Did you know that Dengeos once started off as a small shack-like store at the corner of Main Street and McCormick Boulevard? Well, all that has obviously changed and despite their massive parking lot it can be a little tricky to find a space to go inside and eat.

There was no Plan B in the cards for Nick Theodosis, owner of Dengeos. Given his background he was destined to run a restaurant.

“I always had a passion for cooking and restaurants,” he said. “It was a product of my environment.”

Check out the story here: Dengeos is as 'Main Street' as it Gets

One unique job -

We've all seen the show Hoarding: Buried Alive, but do we know anything about the people who go in and clean up the mess? For this Small Business Saturday profile, we turned to Skokie based American Hoarders.

Craig Strauss, owner of American Hoarders, said his first customer was his dad.

“It’s being able to put a plan together to resolve a problem,” Strauss said.  “I’m a problem solver. I did that for many years in insurance and as a mechanic, that’s all it is now.”

Read the story (with video) here: American Hoarders: Small Business Gives People Second Chance

"Where everyone knows your name."

Just about every Skokian has eaten at Jack's Restaurant at 5201 Touhy Ave. Several years ago, the business was a bustling 24-hour dinner, but with the smoking ban the hours have scaled back.

Still, the diner is a popular destination for many, and we look at the current owner who said he was destined to run the family business.

“I’m Greek, I had no choice,” he said with a grin.

Read the story here: The Story Behind Skokie's Iconic Jack's Restaurant

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