By Deja Harrell
There aren’t many Italian restaurants in Bronzeville, why’d you choose that as Truth’s staple cuisine?
Bronzeville was becoming an extremely diverse community. When you look around you see a lot of chicken and soul food restaurants besides the typical fast food restaurants. I love Italian food myself and realized there are other people who go out for a night out with your spouse or friends. The rich kinds of pasta and creamy sauces along with some bar food inspired by Italian menu items was something the community needed.
Tell us a bit about your road to entrepreneurship.
Entrepreneurship is in my blood. Believe it or not, I have never had an actual job. The spirit of entrepreneurship was with me since high school where I have coined the “school stylist” and did all my classmates hair at Simeon. Once I received my license I began working in a salon and then later opened my first salon at the age of 24. Throughout my hair journey I met many celebrities such as Mo’Nique, which lead to me being the stylist for The Parkers, Moesha, Six Feet Under, and various other projects. After leaving Hollywood, I settled back into Chicago opening a couple of 24-hour daycares, taking on real estate investment and then my latest project Truth Italian Restaurant.
What’s the meaning behind the name, Truth?
Truth means “that which is true or accordance with fact or reality”. I am 100% authentic at all times, and what you see is what you get. I wanted this project to be a true representation of me in all aspects.
Should we look forward to new changes in 2019?
Truth started Breakfast last year and we will continue bringing some of the most unique and flavorful menu items brought to you by Chef Rylon. You will also see some new flavorful menu items on our lunch/dinner menu and more Spring and Summer events brought to you by Truth.
Why did you choose to establish Truth in Bronzeville?
I wanted to contribute to the revitalization of the Bronzeville community by providing jobs and stimulating some economic growth within the neighborhood. This led me to the decision to open Truth in the Bronzeville community. I grew tired of having wonderful dining experiences so far from my home, primarily downtown and on the north side of Chicago. I wanted to make sure that my neighbors knew that we are worthy of having wonderful establishments in our backyard as well.
Any advice for budding entrepreneurs?
The best advice I can give to budding entrepreneurs–pay yourself twenty-five percent of your earnings and split the rest among bills and investments. No matter what the method: stocks, bonds, CDs, real estate, or under the mattress. Saving and spending wisely is always the key. You should live by a budget. Make a budget and stick to it, trust me you won’t regret it.
56 E Pershing Rd, Chicago, IL 60653