How was life growing up in the inner city of East Baltimore?
Life growing up in Baltimore City was actually fun for the most part. When I was growing up it was still a part of the neighborhood, so I would always be outside in different areas with my friends. I spent a lot of time hanging around Eden and Preston, Latrobe projects, and around Kennedy and 20th. In the summertime, I was at the basketball games at the Dome, playground, swimming at Chick Webb rec center, or running errands down Old Town Mall. Those were the good aspects. The challenging parts were raising 2 of my siblings as I was the oldest. I had a tremendous amount of responsibility at such a young age. I was forced to defend myself often against people who picked on me for being light skin or assuming that I was stuck up because I lived in a townhouse as opposed to the projects. In hindsight, most of them didn’t realize how blessed they were not because they at least had one or both of their parents at home with them.
What are three lessons you learned early on in life that still helps you today?
Three lessons I learned early in life are: never judge a book by its cover, how you treat people matters, and to never give up.
What are the pros and cons of being a business owner?
The pros of being a business owner would be the freedom to create your own path, the flexibility of creating your own schedule and being able to do things I’m passionate about.
The cons are not having stable income, being solely responsible for your livelihood as well as any employees and staying motivated.
You own Madison Street Design and Build Group. Break down your company and what it brings differently to the marketplace?
Madison Street Build and Design Group brings passion, functionality and design into the marketplace. I hope that I’ll always treat each project as if it’s my own investment. We truly love to transform spaces and bring the client’s vision to life. As a child, I would always rearrange our small bedroom and now I realize that was me creating a new outlet and temporarily getting away. That’s the same feeling we want to give to our clients.
Is interior design in Baltimore, Maryland a hard business to get into and is there a lot of competition , with enough work to go around?
I don’t think it’s too hard to break into the interior design market in Baltimore. I think like with any industry you need to understand the market and the role you want to play in it. The most important thing would be to identify your market and provide a great service. There’s always an opportunity to break into a new market.
Where do you see your company in the next 5 years?
Answer: In 5 years, I see Madison Street Build and Design Group moving into more community development projects. We want to be a part of giving back to the community by assisting with the development of low income housing projects, as well as developing commercial retail spaces. Our goal is to be impactful and be a part of the best Baltimore and the world has to offer.
MADISON STREET DESIGN AND BUILD GROUP
5616 Park Heights Ave, Ste 6
Baltimore, MD 21215