Sheila Johnson left her corporate banking job in Center City and returned to her community to help run the University Thriftshop at 1723 Cecil B. Moore Ave. This business is about recycling items that people have discarded.
Johnson owns the thrift jointly with a friend who owns a moving and storage company. Johnson’s son Stephen works with her in the thrift.
She owns the shop along with a friend, who also owns a moving and storage company. The thrift shop is about recycling items that people may not want anymore.
Johnson’s partner attends auctions around the city purchasing items that are then sold at the thrift.
“We give old stuff new life and prevent items from being thrown out.” Johnson said. Business has grown over the last year and half since she returned to the community as her workplace.
“Temple has made a lot of changes to the area, especially in the way of housing” Johnson said.
And because of those Temple University related changes Johnson feels it has helped University ThriftShop stay in business. She not only sees college students in her shop, but more people from the community are now shopping there as well.
James Lauren, owner of Hollywood Shoes at 1615 W. Cecil B. Moore Ave, just down the block from Johnson’s shop, disagreed with Johnson’s viewpoint.
“This used to be the Walnut Street of the area.”
Lauren said he sees a lot of Temple students but see those students as a bust by keeping some of the community patrons away. He said he doesn’t really see things getting much better in the future and thinks small shops like his are in danger.
“Brick and mortar stores are suffering,” Lauren said in referencing the growth of online shopping.