My name is Bobby Patel, I introduce myself humbly before you as the new President of DLI. I sincerely thank my peers was putting me in this position.
About myself, I have a loving wife, Kamini and three terrific daughters, Shiya, Krisha and Riya.
I was born in a tiny village called Ode in Gujarat, India. I grew up in Zambia, Africa, where my dad practiced law. I immigrated to USA in 1986 with my parents, studied to be a Civil Engineer, and graduated from California State University, Long Beach. Being an entrepreneur at heart, while in college I dabbled in various businesses. I bought and sold used cars and sold the world-famous Ginsu Knives door to door. I also helped out at a family business, Alta Dena Drive-In Dairy, while working at a travel agency.
I entered this great industry in 1995 when we bought Kona Cleaners and we have grown to several locations since then. I also helped start BeCreative360 in 2013 with the idea of automating marketing for drycleaners.
‘An Investment in knowledge pays the best Interest.’ – Benjamin Franklin
I learned a lot from being part of industry associations and cost groups. At these group meetings I learned the most information and met some of most kind, helpful, and un-selfish people in this industry. One should never stop learning. DLI offers a lot of resources to continue to sharpen your skills.
Since March 2020 we have been struggling as an industry and we continue to struggle today. Throughout this time DLI has been hard at work getting the best educational information out to its members. This is the time for all of us to come together as one.
Forgetting the past and looking to the future, what does 2021 to hold for us? I am very optimistic on what 2022 is going to look like. The businesses that have survived will do very, very well – provided we each do our part to project a positive image for our industry.
My family taught me early on: Whatever work you do, immerse yourself in it, do it with heart and pride and the results will follow. I have been immersed in drycleaning solvent for so long that I am told I have a permanent just-cleaned and pressed fragrance. 😁
With heart and a lot of pride, I dedicate myself along with my fellow DLI board members to help better this industry we all love.