Native Business Founder, Publisher and CEO Gary Davis and serial entrepreneur JC Seneca discuss patience and taking incremental steps toward your goals.
JC Seneca, a member of the Seneca Nation, didn’t become the owner of multiple businesses overnight. He had a grand vision: owning a truck stop. That eventually came to fruition — his Native Pride Travel Plaza is located on prime real estate, off Exit 58 on the New York State Thruway I-90, on Seneca territory. Native Pride Travel Plaza houses a smoke shop, gas station, high-speed Diesel pumps and a popular diner in Irving, New York.
Seneca also owns Six Nations Manufacturing, which produces his own brand of cigarettes, BUFFALO Cigarettes, sold at his gas station and nationwide. And he additionally owns and operates Tallchief Hemp, an e-commerce business.
That’s not all. “I produce my own cigarettes, and I haul my own fuel,” said Seneca, who also acts as motor fuel wholesaler and transporter with his own fleet of trucks. “I’m totally self-sufficient,” he previously told Native Business.
And he’s been hard at work at that vision for decades — since he got his start in 1987 selling 60 cartons of cigarettes curbside from his camper.
His message for aspiring entrepreneurs is to stay the course, and take it one step at a time.
“Patience is a key factor in success. Many people — especially nowadays — everybody wants to jump from one place to way down the road. And so the way I function and operate and what my dad told me when I was young: You take those small steps forward, and before you know it, you’re where you need to be. And so I think what you need to do is think about that — patience, belief in your abilities in yourself, and go for it. And don’t take no for an answer. And there’s no such word as can’t.”
Native Business Magazine
Carmen Davis - Founder, Publisher and Executive Editor
Mrs. Davis is the founder, publisher and executive editor of the only Native American wholly owned and operated national tribal business publication, Native Business Magazine, and the producer of the annual and nationally attended Native Business Summit.
Mrs. Davis is also president of Davis Strategy Group has over 23 years of service to Indian Country and as an entrepreneur she has successfully established, operated, managed and grown several businesses in multiple sectors. She is equal parts a strategic visionary and behind-the-scenes implementor, essential in guiding and overseeing every process of brand development, business expansion, nation-to-nation relationship building and more.
She was named in 2009 as one of the first recipients of the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development’s, “40 Under 40” award which recognizes up and coming community and business leaders from across Indian Country.