I ask the House of Representatives to join me in celebrating an Iowan who models the promise of the American Dream and someone who has turned their passion for dance into a thriving small business. It is my great honor to recognize Sabetha Mumm, the owner of Dance Vision in Johnston, as Iowan of the Week.
A lifelong dancer, Sabetha always knew she was meant to share her love of dance with others. After one semester of college as a pre-law major, she switched to a dance major, eventually graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Dance with Honors. Without enough resources to help her career in dance immediately come to fruition, she initially opted for a more traditional career path in an office setting.
Years later while encouraging her young son to follow his dreams, she realized she needed to do the same. She wanted to lead by example for her children and provide young Iowans the resources she hadn’t had to pursue their dreams of careers in dance. With the support of her family, the native Iowan dedicated the next few years to researching and planning her business: Dance Vision. Since opening in 2003, Mumm has grown Dance Vision from a rented, 2,500 square foot space with one studio to a custom-designed, 12,000 square foot facility with five different studios.
Thousands of talented students have come through her classes and several hundred have gone on to find professional success as dancers in the United States and abroad. They’ve graced Broadway shows, advanced through televised dance competitions, toured with world-famous musical artists, and been featured in music videos, Sabetha credits this overwhelming success to the spirit and work ethic of Iowans. There’s plenty of talent here, she says, and now a resource to help it flourish.
After learning more about Sabetha’s journey and growing venture, it came as no surprise that she was named the Small Business Administration’s 2020 Iowa Small Businessperson of the Year: a prestigious honor very well deserved.
Businesses like Sabetha’s are vital to the success of any community. This is a fact we see more each day as the pandemic stretches on. As a small business owner myself, I know it is an incredible challenge to start and maintain that vision. Sabetha’s drive to pursue her dream is inspiring – that kind of leap is not for the faint of heart. Her decision has clearly paid off as we celebrate her success and thriving dance studio today. She’s helping kids and families find joy through movement and self-expression and is passing her passion for dance down to new generations. She is a perfect example of how strategic collaboration, creativity, a little patience, and a lot of hard work can make your dreams a reality.
As I’ve traveled all 16 counties across my district, one thing every place has in common is that women are who hold our communities together. Whether it’s through volunteering at church, providing child care for neighbors, organizing an annual festival, or operating a successful small business – the ladies in our communities are getting things done.
Sabetha says, “The only dreams impossible to reach are the ones that you never pursue.” It is people with that kind of spirit that make Iowa such a great place to live, have a family, and grow a business. I will continue to fight in Congress for small business owners like Sabetha to ensure the American dream will always be alive in our community. It is my honor to recognize Sabetha Mumm as our Iowan of the Week.