Black Madison is at the cusp of a renaissance. The city is abuzz with news from the Progress Center for Black Women, the Urban League of Greater Madison’s Black Business Hub, and the Center for Black Excellence and Culture, which are promising greater vitality and new opportunities. One area where there is already great momentum is entrepreneurship. Black entrepreneurs are establishing and growing businesses in many sectors. In this issue, we highlight three Black entrepreneurs with flourishing businesses who are dedicated not only to their own success, but also to educating, uplifting, and providing exceptional services for the community. Join us in celebrating them and be sure to patronize!
Clarity Landscape and Gardens, LLC
Joseph Ndour established Clarity Landscape and Gardens, LLC in 2018. The company provides comprehensive landscape and garden services for residential and commercial properties in Dane County. A native of Senegal, Ndour acquired a love for plants from his father who was a horticulturist. He came to Madison and pursued an education at Madison College and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. With the support of the community, including his clients and the Urban League of Greater Madison, he has built a thriving business around his passion.
Ndour’s first job in Madison was designing a Zen Garden. From there, business built through word-of-mouth; he spends very little on advertising. In addition to garden and landscape design, Clarity Landscape and Gardens offers seasonal packages the help homeowners and businesses to care for their lawns and plants properly throughout the year. They also do retaining walls and other hard landscaping projects.
Ndour credits his success to hard work and passion. He shares these principles with children in his school-based volunteer work. In the future, he wants to expand his team and procure necessary equipment to handle jobs more efficiently. Also, he wants to continue to share with youth “so that they can understand that their food does not come from Woodman’s or Aldi.” He hopes to help them to build an appreciation for nature and a strong work ethic.
La’Karron Beauty Elements
When Latia Warren finished her education at the Aveda Institute of Madison and established La’Karron Beauty Elements in 2018, she did not imagine that in 5 short years she would be an entrepreneur, author, and educator. La’Karron Beauty Elements provides skincare treatments, waxing, lash extensions, and teeth whitening services. The salon also offers skincare products under its own label.
One of Latia’s goals is to offer her clients quality services and products at an accessible price point. She sees beauty and as something that all women deserve and does not think that pampering should be reserved for the affluent or limited to special occasions.
After experiencing the trial and error associated with establishing a new business, Latia decided to share what she has learned with other estheticians. She wrote An Esthetician’s Guide for Business, a guidebook for beginning an esthetician business. In 2021, she began teaching at Charnelle Ardor School of Beauty and Culture, where she earned her educator license and continues to teach. For Latia, entrepreneurship is a lifelong dream and she shares her wisdom generously with those who want to follow that path via esthetics.
Latia sees continued professional development and steady growth in her future. She wants to help new estheticians to establish themselves through apprenticeship programs and space rental. Latia is also branching out to offer her entrepreneurial expertise to women across industries.
La’Karron Beauty Elements
433 Grand Canyon Drive
(Inside the Duncan Edwards Building)
Madison, WI 53719
Harper’s Hair Culture
Harper Cox is living her lifelong dream as the owner of Harper’s Hair Culture. After working in Madison-area salons, Cox established her salon in Middleton in 2018. On March 1, she opened her newly renovated space on Northport Drive without any loans.
Cox specializes in curly and coily hair of all types, but she has a special interest in helping Black women to embrace and care for their hair in its natural state. She describes the salon as “an elevated experience” where she creates a peaceful and luxurious experience for clients from all walks of life. When considering a location for her dream salon, Cor wanted to move to the north side despite the stigma that some attach to that area “because we deserve it” and to be nearer her focal clientele. She is also renting salon space to a massage therapist and esthetician to complete the experience.
While Cox is a passionate stylist and colorist, her heart is drawn to teaching. Whether in individual client consultations or salon-based classes, she is dedicated to the education required for healthy natural haircare. The salon has recently launched curly kids’ classes to encourage children’s love for their curls and to support parents in keeping their hair healthy.
Looking ahead, Cox wants to build her business through consistency. She is also looking at ways to maintain the elevated experience that she has created while also navigating the challenges that many Black women face such as childcare. Her rental space is supporting other entrepreneurs to build their businesses with the benefit of her expertise and the salon’s infrastructure.
Harper’s Hair Culture
1857 Northport Drive
Madison, WI 53704