Susana Robledo's father was robbed and murdered in Colombia when she was nine. Her frightened mother made a decision: she would take her only child to the United States and raise here there.
They struggled at first, sewing and cleaning to make ends meet. But Robledo, undocumented but undaunted, had bigger dreams.
Today, she is the owner of CubeCare, a $5 million company in Miami that employs more than 50 people, including dozens of immigrants. CubeCare cleans, fixes and custom designs curtains and other upholstery for hospitals, hotels and many other organizations and clients.
"I want to continue to live and strive in a community where diversity is important," she said. "And I think that without immigration and without the balance that immigrants bring to the economy, things will be so different. You are going to go from paying $5 for milk to paying $15 for milk."
Robledo, who is now a U.S. citizen, has been honored by her hometown and state, and recognized nationally for her work. And she innovates constantly to improve her company, for example designing a special software that can track the location and status of curtains wherever they may be.
In this episode of Making it in America, a video series highlighting the impacts of immigrant entrepreneurs in Florida, we show viewers what Robledo has accomplished as a Colombian entrepreneur and how her work has inspired others in the community.
Oscar Corral, a former newspaper reporter and Emmy Award-winning documentary filmmaker, is founder and CEO of Explica Media.
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