Beth Bradshaw first went to work at The Finishing Touch when she was five days old.
Her childhood years were spent learning every aspect of the family downtown Pittsburg business, which this year was recognized as the 2015 Pittsburg Area Chamber of Commerce Small Business of the Year.
Bradshaw’s dedication to the family business and her many other efforts in the community also earned her personal recognition as a Pittsburg Area Chamber of Commerce Woman of Distinction for 2016.
“I’ve been doing this my whole entire life, literally,” Bradshaw said of her work at The Finishing Touch. “I hadn’t really stepped into a managerial position until about seven years ago, but I’ve always been here.”
Bradshaw said in her growing-up years she planned to leave Pittsburg, and did so for a short while.
“My freshman year of college I went to Sioux City, Iowa. I had a scholarship there,” Bradshaw said. “It was a wonderful experience, and I think it’s only because I did go away for that short amount of time that I was able to choose to come back to Pittsburg and appreciate it more.”
Upon return, she met her husband, Adam, and resumed working both with The Finishing Touch and Jody Phillips Dance Company. When her first daughter was born, Bradshaw said she chose to prioritize her work with her family business, where she and Adam both have naturally segued into management roles alongside her parents.
The Finishing Touch has grown; in what it offers, the number of employees and its output, and was nominated for Small Business of the Year in 2014 and again in 2015 when it was awarded the honor.
“If I could point to one thing we probably did to put ourselves in the position to receive Small Business of the Year, it is hosting a chamber coffee,” Bradshaw said, adding that event wowed area leaders as they learned the scope of what the business does.
In addition to innovating within her family’s business, Bradshaw has become heavily involved in several other area startups, including volunteer efforts with the NICU Helping Hands Angel Gowns program, starting the Pittsburg Parks and Recreation Dance Program and, most recently, operating her old home as a professional rental after moving to a new one.
Bradshaw said she and her mom both became part of the national Angel Gowns program in April 2014 and have a large group of women in the community who have joined the efforts. Meanwhile, she has helped coordinate the national conference and is a moderator for all of the seamstresses across the nation.
She also maintained some of her work teaching dance until Jody Phillips closed in Pittsburg in 2011.
“I really missed dance because it had been part of my life since I was three,” Bradshaw said. “When I look back on my life, if I could pick one thing that had the most impact it would be dance.”
She missed it so much that she called Pittsburg Parks and Recreation with the idea of starting a dance program, and began teaching shortly thereafter. The program has since grown to two nights a week, offering a total of nine classes.
In another venture, Bradshaw said when her family opted to buy a new home their old home remained on the market and eventually they decided to turn it into a professional rental, offering it for a month at a time for short-term professionals or those who need a place to stay while searching for a long-term home. The venture has been yet another success thus far.
Bradshaw also has contributed her time and talents to the youth program at First United Methodist Church, George Nettels Elementary’s PTO, Pittsburg Area Young Professionals, Pittsburg Renaissance FCE and Ducks Unlimited.