When Beau Ourada is ready for his twice-weekly adjustment, he marches down the hallway at Active Life Chiropractic in Redwood Falls like he owns the place, which isn’t too far from the truth: His mom is the boss, and his grandma is the officer manager. Dr. Danielle Ourada owns Active Life Chiropractic and has been adjusting Beau’s spine since he was two days old.
“I love babies and toddlers. They react much quicker to the adjustment; you can see it before they leave,” Dani said.
As a high school student growing up in Franklin, Dani was active in sports. After an injury that left her unable to stand because of pain, a local chiropractor in Bird Island helped her heal.
“Ever since then, that’s all I wanted to be, a chiropractor,” said Dani, who received her Doctor of Chiropractic degree in 2014 from Northwestern Health Sciences University in Bloomington, Minn.
Following graduation, Dani quickly realized she wanted to run her own practice and started researching opening a business.
“There was a need in Redwood Falls, and I knew I wanted to be here; this is where my family is. I would not have a business without my family,” said Dani, whose mom, Connie Serbus, is the office manager at Active Life.
Creating her own job opportunity has not been easy. The first bank Dani approached for a loan turned her down. Then Dani partnered with Bremer Bank and our Microenterprise Loan Program.
In addition to financing, Dani wanted help with marketing and hired a corporate management firm to boost her growth. But the national firm was out of touch with doing business in a rural community, and its recommendations didn’t work. Dani felt like she was throwing her money away: “No one ever came out to see me. No one ever set foot in here from the management firm.”
She ended her contract and relied instead on the free technical assistance that’s part of every Microenterprise Loan through SWIF. Jackie Turner, SWIF Economic Development Officer, stops to visit Dani about every six weeks and gives her personalized assistance.
“Jackie has been amazing and has really helped with marketing. If things aren’t going well, she really gets you out of your funk,” Dani said.
“Dani is constantly raising the bar for herself and growing the business,” Jackie said. “Working with her the last five
years has been such a pleasure. She understands that you cannot become complacent as a business owner. You must consistently work on it.”
This fall, Active Life Chiropractic will celebrate its five-year anniversary, and Dani is starting to see the business growth she’s been working toward. She’s added an independent massage therapist in her space and started offering DOT and sports physicals. In the future, she hopes to become certified in acupuncture.
“It’s been really fun. It’s amazing to see how she grows,” said Dani’s mom, Connie.
Since Beau came along almost two years ago, entrepreneurship has been even more of a balancing act. If Beau’s sick and can’t go to child care in Seaforth, Dani’s husband, Michael, often takes parenting duties. He works for Redwood Electric Co-op as a lineman and has some flexibility. In a pinch, Dani brings Beau to the office. Clients don’t mind. One benefit of the small community is Dani has built relationships – even friendships – with her clients, and they understand: Her success as a business owner and a parent is part of their success as a community.
Support for economic recovery
We don’t just support businesses as they get started: We’re here for southwest Minnesota’s entrepreneurs in the wake of challenges and change, including COVID-19. Part of our immediate response was offering loan deferments for all our current business clients. We’re also working with chambers, economic development partners and state and federal agencies to help ensure our southwest Minnesota businesses can access the resources they need.Find Business Resources