36 THE QUEENS COURIER • QUEENS BUSINESS • APRIL 11, 2019 FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT WWW.QNS.COM
Jamaica entrepreneur living
dream as small business honoree
BY BILL PARRY
Growing up in south Jamaica, Dawn
Kelly always dreamed of owning her
grandfather’s house and years later aft er
a successful career doing public relations
for a fi nancial services fi rm she was able
to buy the home.
“It meant so much to me because my
grandfather was the fi rst one in my family
to actually own a home so it was very,
very special to me,” Kelly said.
Her career came to an abrupt end in
2015 when Kelly was told her position was
“Th at sent me into a tailspin. It absolutely
devastated me,” Kelly recalled. “Th ey
called it retirement, but I’m too young to
retire and I spent more than two years of
grieving and praying, and aft er so many
failed interviews for other job opportunities,
New year off to rough start for Queens foreclosures
BY EMILY DAVENPORT
A recent report found that the “World’s
Borough” is seeing a spike in foreclosures,
particular in southeast Queens neighborhoods.
PropertyShark recently released their
Residential Foreclosure Report for Q1
2019. Overall, New York City saw a 5
percent decrease in fi rst-time foreclosures,
following the downward trend
from the end of 2018.
Even so, Queens saw the highest number
of fi rst-time foreclosures compared
to the rest of the boroughs with 315
homes on the auction block.
Compared to the fourth quarter of
2018, foreclosure rates in Queens rose 25
percent. However, year-over-year foreclosure
rates only rose 4 percent overall.
Just like during the previous quarter,
the highest number of foreclosed properties
in Queens this quarter were listed
in the 11434 ZIP code, covering
parts of South Jamaica, St. Albans and
Springfi eld Gardens. with 28 reported
foreclosures. Following behind is the
11413 ZIP code (Laurelton, Springfi eld
Gardens) with 22 foreclosures and the
11412 ZIP code (St. Albans) with 21
Th is quarter, New York City saw a 13
percent decrease of homes in pre-foreclosure.
However, Queens saw a total of
898 homes in pre-foreclosure, marking a
10 percent increase year-over-year and a
7 percent increase quarter-over-quarter.
To read the full report, visit www.propertyshark.
I realized I didn’t feel like putting my
life in another person’s hands any longer.”
Kelly was sitting in her living room
watching a cable news channel when she
saw a feature on a hip-hop star who began
his own small business.
“I saw a story on that rapper Styles P
opening a juice bar and that really caught
my fancy. I watched that report intently
and I realized I had been juicing for two
years to lose weight. Aft er I lost my job I
went from a size 8 to 14 so I started my
own health regimen.”
Kelly is also a fan of posting on
“I used to Instagram all of my juices,
so in my phone I had photos of not
just the juices but diff erent menus and
price charts of the juice bars I went to,”
Kelly said. “Th en I started taking diff erent
entrepreneurship classes. New York is
chock full of these programs and all you
have to do is look for them.”
In 2016, Kelly discovered a storefront
was available just around the corner from
“I’ll never forget. It was DK Upholstery,
those are my initials and now it’s my
store,” she said.
Aft er failing to be profi table in 2017
when it fi rst opened, Th e Nourish Spot
turned a profi t in 2018. Friends had tried
to discourage Kelly from starting her own
company, fearing that the neighborhood
would not support a health food business,
but she followed her dream and is proving
that her creative leadership and unique
idea can make the business a success. Th e
Nourish Spot off ers a selection of natural
fruit and vegetable juices, smoothies, salads,
soups and sandwich wraps.
Earlier this month, Kelly’s store Th e
Nourish Spot, located at 107-05 Guy R.
Brewer Blvd., had a visitor. Beth Goldberg,
the director of the U.S. Small Business
Administration’s New York offi ce, stopped
by to present Kelly with a certifi cate honoring
her for beating out more than a million
entrepreneurs throughout the state
to become Microbusiness Person of the
Year for 2019.
“As a former small business owner
myself, I know that running a company
oft en means you sacrifi ce your social life
and you don’t spend enough time with
your family,” Goldberg said.
Kelly put together a staff of youngsters
aging from 14 to 22 from around the borough
in partnerships with organizations
such as Queens Community House, the
Police Athletic League and LaGuardia
Community College. Most of the staff are
students taking part in the city’s C-CAP
program which prepares more than 2,000
students for careers in the restaurant and
“Th e city pays them but we train them
in the culinary arts, hospitality, customer
service and general life skills,” Kelly said.
Photo via Getty Images
Courtesy of Dawn Kelly