Good Works – Launch Detroit
To many entrepreneurs, getting the training and financing they need to start their business is a herculean challenge. Thanks to the LaunchDETROIT program and dentist Dr. Noel Jackson, however, Levi Johnson Jr. has his barbeque sauce business off to a blazing start.
LaunchDETROIT is sponsored by Rotary Club District 6400. While the Rotary underwrites Launch programs in several other large cities, Detroit’s was the first. The program arranges for mini-loans and 12 weeks of business training through Baker College for promising entrepreneurs. It also pairs the entrepreneur with a successful, knowledgeable business person. In Levi’s case, that person was Dr. Jackson, founder of Jackson, Snider and Parker Family and Cosmetic Dentistry.
“Levi came to the Rotary Club with an idea for a new barbeque sauce,” says Dr. Jackson. Johnson had developed the recipe with his grandfather, who had been a pit master back in Tennessee. “He had a great attitude and a great recipe. All he needed was some training and a small loan to get his business off the ground.”
As a result, Johnson’s sauce is no longer just a dream. His “Mister Levi’s My T Fine Soul Sauce” can be found in several local food stores, including Concessi’s in Riverview, Holiday Market in Royal Oak, and Western Market in Ferndale, and Bush’s Markets. It is also used by several area restaurants in their cooking.
“Levi’s experience was so inspiring that Rotary International came to Detroit to create a video that tells his story,” says Dr. Jackson. The entrepreneur and his mentor have become friends as well as business associates. “Levi is quite a guy,” Dr. Jackson says. “He’s a mechanic by vocation, but his real love is singing. He’s the lead singer in a couple of bands.”
Dr. Jackson’s practice includes Drs. Sheri Snider and Kristen Parker. All three dentists are lifelong residents of the Downriver area and enjoy serving the community in which they grew up. All three are actively involved in furthering their skills through continued education.
Jackson, Snider & Parker Family and Cosmetic Dentistry is located at 254 West Rd., Trenton. Please visit trentonsmiles.com to learn more.T