by Matthew Kelly
Moving to the United States with his mother as a child, Espieman Dumé, owner of Maximum Barber Shop in the Bronx, is a self-made man, a product of his own hard work and determination, and now he sponsors a program to help others.
Dumé and his mother came to the United States from the Dominican Republic in search of a better life, and the two settled into Manhattan when he was 7 years old. The two later moved to the Bronx, where Espieman attended high school. While he found the transition to life in the Bronx to be rather easy because he found a similar Hispanic culture, he told me of the struggles he faced while getting his education when it came to the language barrier and acquiring school supplies. He spoke of how as an immigrant, it was difficult to get the latest school supplies such as textbooks, some of which dated back as far back as the 1970s.
Despite these obstacles, Dumé was motivated to one day open his own business to attain the life he and his mother sought when they came to this country. After high school he worked minimum wage jobs as a means of income, at fast foot restaurants and other similar jobs. He also spent his summers back in the Dominican Republic with his father, who owned a restaurant of his own, and here Espieman learned how to operate his own business.
With the skills he had learned from his father and in pursuit of his dream of owning his own business, Dumé opened his first Maximum Barber Shop in November, 2005. Most recently, Espieman opened a second barbershop on Fordham Road in November, 2009, which in itself has become apart of the community. Maximum Barber Shop sponsors a ‘Be Better’ program in partnership with Fordham University, taking students from four local high schools and providing them with free hair cuts, Fordham sportswear, and guidance as they graduate school. Espieman hopes to expand this program in the future, and help more kids in the community.
Through his own determination, Espieman has established himself as a successful businessman after coming from humble beginnings. His shop serves hundreds of Fordham students and people in the Bronx, as he continues to expand his business and better the community.