ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) -- Strange Donuts opened it's doors in 2013, and this month opened their third St. Louis location, but it wasn't an easy road for owner Jason Bockman.
"I was 11 when I was first arrested," Bockman said when he spoke with KMOV's Meet St. Louis podcast about his tough upbringing, from arrests and drug addiction to getting clean and sober.
But, with drive and determination, he became an entrepreneur. Working in early start ups and a successful run as a hot dog vendor, he went to University Missouri St. Louis and studied in China.
"I learned how to run a business at the hot dog stand."
Bockman said those lessons play out every day at Strange Donuts, especially in terms of customer service.
With three locations in St. Louis and a plan to franchise underway, Bockman said he has never stopped dreaming big.
"I love this city and I my goal, one of them, is to bring a
n NBA team here and have Strange Donuts arena. I'm thinking that big," he said.
He hopes his success and the bumpy road along the way will inspire others. That's one of the reasons they started a non-profit, Strange Cares. With the help of Big Brothers Big Sisters, The Children's Heart Foundation and Girls on the Run, they work to empower kids' lives through scholarship programs.
Find out more at strangecares.org.