Owner – Kim Knopf
In 1983, Kim Knopf responded to a newspaper ad for a salesperson in a bedding shop. The interviewer’s enthusiasm for the prospects of the business sparked her determination to run a shop of her own rather than someone else’s. At the tender age of 23, Kim Knopf plunged headlong into the rough-and-tumble world of free enterprise. Just one year removed from her college days at the University of Kentucky, the young
businesswoman put $25,000 on the table and set out to live the American dream.
Kim began by doing research and attending seminars offered by the U.S. Small Business Administration. Next, she prepared a business plan. The parents of her then boyfriend, now husband, took a look at her business plan and let her use a certifcate of deposit for collateral to borrow half of the start-up money, and bought 50 percent of the company’s stock to give her the rest that she needed.
Over the next several decades, she grew her company to 90 retail locations. She had two children along the way and went back to work when they were two to three weeks old, taking them to the office with her every day. She maintains a family-friendly atmosphere and views her employees as her second family, taking pride in helping them develop different skill sets and giving them opportunities to grow and succeed.
I must make sure that the company’s culture is right. I think our employees take pride in and really find a purpose in their jobs and their role in the company’s success. – Kim Knopf
Kim has won several awards for professional achievement, including being a 1995 finalist for Entrepreneur of the Year, the 1996 GERS “Power User of the Year, a national technology award, and was profiled in Nation’s Business in 1998. In May 2010 – One of only four bedding stores in the USA honored as a Retail Giant of Bedding by Furniture/Today.
She served as director of the Putnam County Chamber of Commerce (1997-1999), director of the Putnam County Rotary Club (1997) and president (1999-2000); she is also a member of the Young President’s Organization, served as communication chair for the 1997-1998 year and is currently serving the organization as membership chairman.