Wichita ‘Chief Visionary Officer’ wins Small Business Person of the Year for Kansas
WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) - A Wichita man is now the 2023 Kansas Small Business Person of the Year.
Jordan Harris oversees two companies in the area: Harris Dream Clean and Angel Wings Learning Center. He said one trip to Walmart in 2015 changed his life.
“I bought a vacuum cleaner from Walmart with my unemployment check,” Harris said. “We took $45 from that, bought a vacuum cleaner, and started knocking on people's doors.”
Harris had just lost his job. His wife was unemployed.
“My first daughter, she was born the day after I got fired from my job,” Harris said. “So, I'm in the hospital. Everybody's congratulating me…congratulations on the birth of your child and all that. But I'm sitting in the corner like, 'y'all have no idea. I just got fired. I don't know how I'm paying for any of this.'”
Harris was eventually able to secure an account and the rest is history. He now runs the cleaning company and daycare center with his brother and wife.
“It’s kind of crazy that all this stuff actually came to fruition, the stuff that we planned out all these years ago,” he said.
U.S. Small Business Administration leaders and partners in Kansas nominate and vote on each year’s award winner. Wichita District Leader Wayne Bell said he recused himself from the process because he has known Harris since he was a child.
“We’ve observed really what I think is just a great emerging business with a great story, really powerful story,” Bell said.
Harris will go on to compete for regional and national recognition in Washington D.C. on April 30 and May 1 during the National Small Business Week awards ceremony. Bell said the Wichita City Council plans to recognize him during a meeting in May.
“The story of Harris Dream Clean really just illustrates how a business can start with very humble resources, utilize assistance from the SBA and other partners, and really kind of emerge to a thriving company in the area,” Bell said.
Harris said winning the award gives his businesses “instant credibility.” He said his next steps are taking a hands off approach and hiring others to run his businesses for him as he serves as Chief Visionary Officer.
“It’s kind of crazy to me, to be honest with you, still sinking in a little bit,” Harris said. “But it is such an honor.”