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Sarasota Thursday, Jun. 17, 2010 7 years ago

Sarasota Small Business of the Year Awards: Judith V. Cuppy

by: Stephanie Hannum Managing Editor

After watching her grandmother spend 18 years in a nursing home and missing the joys of her home, Judy Cuppy thought that people should have a choice to stay in their home. And, thus, a second career was born for the president/owner of Senior Home Companions, Inc.

Cuppy took that simple thought and turned it into a company that serves seven counties throughout Florida. The 18-year-old business capitalizes on Florida’s plentiful natural resources: active older people who want to do something meaningful while earning extra money and retirees who need help to remain independent.

“We pride ourselves on carefully matching the care provider with the client to meet the special needs of each individual situation,” said Cuppy. “I brought a new concept to helping the elderly, frail and infirm cope without giving up their independence or their homes. I gave them the chance to make the last years of their lives worthwhile.”

As a woman entrepreneur, Cuppy’s inspiration and work ethic is based on her roots.

“I believe my success comes from the work ethic that my parents gave me,” said Cuppy. “I grew up on a farm where the whole family worked. My mother taught me that what you take from a community, you give back in your time, your talent or your treasure.”

Cuppy is going to be busy in the next year, because she hopes to see her company double in revenue along and convert all of its branch locations — including Palm Beach, Martin, Hillsborough, Pasco, The Villages and Lee Counties — into nurse registries in the next year.

But Cuppy said she is excited about the changes and continued growth.

“Like what you do and you never work a day in your life,” Cuppy said.


Address: 3902 Somerset Drive, Sarasota
Start Date: 1992
Number of employees when started: 1. All of our caregivers are independent contractors.
Number of employees now: Seven
Advice: “Be involved in the community. I’m a community person and believe that what you take from the community, you give back in time, talent or treasure.”
Biggest challenge: “Putting the right caregiver with clients — in other words, matching personalities.”
Where do you see your business a year from now? “I see the expansion continuing and doubling in revenue along with converting all of the Branch locations, for example, Palm Beach, Martin, Hillsborough, Pasco, The Villages, and Lee Counties to nurse registries.”


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