BY JOYCE NANETTE JOHNSON, Staff Writer
ST. PETERSBURG — “I love to help people,” said Holley R. Jones, sole proprietor and owner of Fab 15 Enterprises.
He was elated when his company received one of the MLK Day of Services awards for the minor repairs, maintenance and renovations that because of financial difficulties many homeowners are not able to have the improvements done.
Jones, who has been an ordained deacon since 2007 at Southside Tabernacle Baptist Church, said he first heard about the program last year, but was too late to submit a proposal.
Fab15 is mixture of business under the company’s flagship name. Holley’s businesses include lawn service, landscaping, tree service and he is also a certified notary public. His father, the late Holley P. Jones who passed in 2001 at the age of 81, was instrumental in his becoming interested in home renovation and rehab.
“He taught me superior business and people skills,” Holley said. “Always make eye contact when talking to another person and always greet with a firm handshake.”
Jones’ father owned a construction company that built homes throughout Pinellas County during the 50s, 60s and 70s. Jones said his favorite lesson his father taught him was how to lay out a home, but he admits the lesson that he didn’t pay much attention to was getting as much education as you can. “That’s the part I did not hear too well,” he chuckled.
The former automobile salesman and St. Petersburg native said he started his neighborhood renovation program last December. He and his volunteers of students have now assisted at least 10 homes. Jones said he was motivated to seek the grant after he saw the need in the community.
“A lot of people weren’t in a position to do things around the house, “he said. He went out and talked to people wherever he could from the barbershops to hair salons and grocery stores to hear their personal stories. One woman even told him that her bathroom had caved in.
On the MLK Day of Service, Mon., Jan. 19, Jones and volunteer students from St. Petersburg College will come together to repair sprinklers, mulch and planting palm trees.
“I just want to thank God for my fabulous family, the Fab 15, and for my church family at Southside Baptist Church,” said Jones. “I thank God for the strength I have gained since becoming a faithful Christian. God has given me the vision for this project to help others and to contribute to the improvement of this community.”
Jones sees this as a way to honor what God has done for him. “I just want to be a man who God uses. My message to everyone is if you haven’t tried God, try it you will like it! There is no if, ands or buts about it, for his truth will set you free! Keep God’s words going in your life this year. It’s so many people who need help and I’m about the helping,” he finished.