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Like father, like son: Brooksher L. Banks built the state's largest dry-cleaning business, but he gives his father much of the credit.

As president of Fashion Park Cleaners, Brooksher L. Banks' duties range "from personnel and financial analysis to cleaning the toilet," he says.

Banks grew up working part time during junior and senior high school in his family's cleaning business.

"I started by sweeping floors and taking out trash," he says. "By the time I got through college, I knew all about office procedures and actual production."

His extensive knowledge would have made the dry-cleaning business a logical career choice. But Banks spent two years as an accountant after graduating from Baylor University at Waco, Texas.

Health Problems

Banks returned to dry cleaning in 1977 when his father began having health problems. As an only child, Banks said he was prompted "to rethink my attitude about our industry. I soon found that being successful in anything requires long hours and commitment. The attraction to small business captured me. I never lack for a challenge."

In fact, Banks prefers a challenge.

Fashion Park, which is headquartered at North Little Rock, has doubled in size since 1987 and is recognized as an innovator in the industry.

Fashion Park is the only Arkansas dry cleaner selected to attend the Varsity International Conference of Cleaners for six consecutive years. Banks chaired the group in 1991.

Banks says his success is due in large part to his father, Brooksher T. Banks, who taught him the importance of customer satisfaction. He hopes to one day follow his father by serving on the board of the International Fabricare Institute.

When Banks isn't running Fashion Park's four operating plants and 12 pickup stations, you might find him in a basketball gym supporting his daughter's cheerleading squad or on a soccer field coaching his son's team.
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Title Annotation:Arkansas Business of the Year: Executive of the Year
Author:Harper, Kim
Publication:Arkansas Business
Article Type:Company Profile
Date:Jan 27, 1992
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