Local Businesses Share
In the coming weeks, we are interviewing local business owners to see how they are doing. We are publishing brief articles about each business - maybe you can relate to some of these business owners? Please consider supporting these businesses. Contact us to be interviewed at or call us at 509-455-5053.
Interview #1
Owner: Amy Sanderson, along with co-owners
What the business does: Private practice physical therapy group; locally owned, started in 1996, with five therapy office locations and a fitness center location.

Target audiences: We serve anybody with orthopedic conditions; the majority is physician referral; insurances can say if they are contracted, but almost always from physical referral and word-of-mouth.

How has COVID-19 impacted your business? – Patient load, we have been considered essential, were able to stay open and treat emergent problems; post operation, continue to see patients; 90% of patient load was not in the category and so we utilized telehealth. Telehealth has been a heavy legislative conversation to ensure insurance coverage; can still do telehealth now due to COVID-19; this has opened a new avenue for technology. Around May 18 when elective surgeries came back, business has ramped up – now at 75-80% capacity.

What has she learned? We felt a responsibility to keep employees through PPP and state unemployment shared work programs; we were able to keep all staff, and are back to full-time now. Through shared work we could work partial hours and get unemployment. Allowing patients to understand we are taking their health seriously and have implemented procedures to ensure safety.

She is inspired by: From my perspective, having two other partners and having them to lean on has been very helpful. When making a hard call, we can consult with each other. Employees have been willing to work with us, that is inspiring.

Special offer: Stop by anytime for a tour of one of our locations.

Contact: Amy Sanderson ,, view office locations and phone numbers on the website and find a location near you.
Interview #2
Owner: Amber Park
What the business does: We are a cheese and wine shop. We specialize in artisan cheeses, charcuterie boards, cheese platters, drop-off catering; teaching kitchens with cooking classes.

Target audiences: The well-traveled couple in their 50s, they appreciate the cheese and the wine, and have more expendable income. Millennials and younger couples who want to learn how to cook. People who want to know how to prepare great vegetable dishes.

How has COVID-19 impacted your business? Financially, the cooking classes - which is a third of the business; and also sales of boxes of wine and cheese plates. We were still able to sell wine and food to go.

What has she learned? We increased social media and newsletter sign ups as a way to connect with people; expanded the wholesale program with wine bars and distilleries and restaurants, sold cheese and charcuterie to restaurants. I also learned to take advice from others with a grain of salt.

She is inspired by: The customer base, my customers inspire me, they are so supportive; I wouldn’t still be here without them!

Special offer: Free house made chocolate add on with any cheese board purchase.

Contact: Amber Park, 509-822-7087,
Interview #3
Owner: Travis Dickinson, along with co-owners
What the business does: Upscale taco shop started in 2018 in downtown Spokane with a chef driven twist; we both came from a fine dining environment and wanted to offer high-quality food in a casual environment. We focus on classical Mexican technique.

Target audiences: It varies, we thought this would be the 20s and 30s crowd; but we have the lawyers office (above the shop), young families, people bar hopping at night – generally all ages. We get accused of "hipster-ism," but it is all dads with young families. They like offering thoughtful, innovative food in an accessible environment.

How has COVID-19 impacted your business? Safety - Now there are Plexiglas barriers in between tables; with our signature "communal table", we have to spread people out. We had to re-think how to provide take-out. People love our level of service for a fast casual restaurant. Even now we are still talking to people, but now through a mask.

What has he learned? On the community side, we have been invested in feeding those in need in the community. Realizing the things you are capable of and when to hire an outside professional. Really listening to guests, making concessions about what you thought your business is going to be. Having the foresight to shift directions.

He is inspired by: Seeing Spokane carrying on. Our regulars who have been coming in consistently; buying gift cards, merchandise, taking extra steps to show concern for the business. The way other restaurants have banded together and had each other’s backs. Everyone is working together and cross promoting each other.

Special offer: 10% off if you mention this newsletter.

Contact: Travis Dickinson,, 509-474-9618
Interview #4
Owner: Lori Humphrey
What the business does:
Started in 2001, Proforma is a promotional products business; there are 900 franchise owners in the US and Canada. Privately owned business; “basically I shop for a living.” Meets with suppliers once a year in Las Vegas.

Target audiences: It is anyone who wants to put their brand out there. Sweet spot – we will do as little as one of something. There are no minimums – the smaller orders are a marketing tool for me. We work heavily in health care, 80%.

How has COVID-19 impacted your business? After March 20, my business completely pivoted to PPE. After that, all product orders for events were cancelled. Suppliers started saying they were going to be offering hand sanitizer, masks, face shields, gowns and gloves, other PPE; so she (Proforma) hired a large distributor to help with getting orders in quickly for customers. No more t-shirts with fun logos, mugs with fun sayings, taglines for events – the fun and creative were gone. It is coming back now – slowly things are starting to come back, more virtual events.

What has she learned? The biggest mistake I made was trying to do everything myself – orders, quotes, never taking a vacation. It is universal among entrepreneurs, “it will be better if I just do it.” Instead, learn how to turn things over to others. I have a virtual assistant that is a tremendous asset to me, and now I can take a vacation without worry.

She is inspired by: My most inspired moments come from other Proforma owners; there is another owner in Bakersfield who is very involved in boards, advisory committees; she is so hard working and is such a great mentor; always calling to see how I’m doing – it’s nice to have people like that in your life.

Special offer: Free logo set up (valued at $60) with any order

Contact: Proforma Good Wood Marketing, 3839 E. 17th St, Spokane, WA 99223, 509-534-7477, m
Referral Rewards
If you refer us to a business owner, to show our appreciation for a client sign up, you will be provided the gift card of your choice to one of the following businesses.

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