Built from scratch while fulfilling a dream, this business grew by force of will and by acquiring a struggling company. During a promising growth phase, it was struck by a "500-year flood" disaster in 2008 which destroyed it. Shortly thereafter, the nation's economy collapsed. Through sheer hard work and determination the owners undertook the business's recovery nearly alone and are bringing their business back. A true American success story made possible with SCORE's help.

How SCORE Helped: 

With guidance, helping to overcome hurdles, providing alternative solutions and by acting as someone to bounce ideas and concerns off of.

My Successes: 

DPI – A FLOOD DISASTER RECOVERY STORY

In the year 2000, Debner Painting, Inc. was founded. Mark Debner started this small company with the desire to see it grow. Mark’s idea for his company goal was to get wood finishing jobs done on time, with top quality & professionalis. In 2008, Mark and his wife Shannon, began DPI Quality Custom Finishes that combined Debner Painting, Inc., and Chew’s Painting and Staining. The game plan was to address all finishing needs on residential and commercial projects.

Six short months after moving into the former Chew’s facility, the flood of 2008 took the business plan that would have guided operations for the next two to three years and “washed it down river”. Working with over 20 employees, a business acquisition, and a local disaster DPI was poised to continue operating through a sluggish economy or not. The strong work ethic throughout DPI’s operations helped the company persevere through the trying time.

Between June 2008 and January 2009, DPI had moved 3 times. Some parts of the forced change have been positive with increased technology in the office and shop. Mark and Shannon have made a commitment to recover and thrive following a huge curve ball that was thrown their way. Their recovery has been assisted by SCORE East Central Iowa, but would not have been possible without the perseverance and capabilities of Mark and Shannon.

What's Great About My Mentor?: 

Their SCORE Mentor:  Scott Loggins.

Excerpt from an area media article:

".... The Debners were cautious at first about having an outsider come in to review their private matters, but quickly felt at ease with their business mentor, Scott Loggins, who also serves as a case manager with [the Cedar Rapids Area Chamber Business Long Term Recovery team--all SCORE mentors] BLTR. They appreciate Loggins’ support during a difficult time that had an impact physically, financially, and emotionally.

As part of the mentoring process, [SCORE Mentor] Loggins helped DPI develop a new business plan. The Debners credit Loggins for keeping them educated about programs available and changes in laws that can help their business.
Mark Debner feels they relate well to Loggins as he also experienced the effects of having a flooded business. Loggins was the owner of Kieck’s Career Apparel during the time of the flood.
“He has experienced what we’ve been through and he came out on the other side,” Mark Debner said. “He shows us that there is light at the end of the tunnel.”
Mark Debner said he also likes [SCORE Mentor] Loggins’ approach to mentoring, offering advice that is meant as suggestions for the Debners to consider.
“He has three or four ideas for every scenario,” Mark Debner said. “He offers advice that he feels is best for our company and helps us keep the ball rolling.” "