“A business that began with a pizza oven, a mixer and enough money to buy some ingredients has now earned the U.S. Small Business Administration Nebraska District III Minority Business Champion of the Year Award,” according to the Rapid City Journal.

“Representatives from the Nebraska Business Development Center and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) presented the award Friday to Mel and Lisa Adams, owners of Straight Outta New York Pizzeria. The SBA Nebraska District Office awards the prize based on efforts to promote minority-owned small businesses, their volunteer time and services to business interest groups, advocacy for and assistance to small businesses.

The Adams opened the business on Bordeaux Street and then moved to 239 Main Street, where they have renovated the building on their own. Mel said purchasing good used equipment and doing work themselves – whether it’s painting or mopping floors – has saved them a lot of money and allowed them to avoid taking out loans.

“We never took out a loan. We never borrowed money from anyone,” Mel said.

Mel and Lisa Adams moved to Chadron from New Jersey. Mel is a native of Pine Ridge, and said he hopes his experience proves to other Native Americans and minorities that success is possible.”

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