About a third of America’s nearly 30 million small businesses are owned by mothers, many of whom pass on their enterprises to the next generation. In honor of Mother’s Day and National Small Business Week, we examine Teacher Created Materials, a local mother and daughter school materials company active in Mihaylo’s Center for Family Business.
From clothing stores to beauty salons, mothers start and operate millions of businesses in the U.S. and abroad that help form the backbone of the global economy. One such enterprise is Huntington Beach-based Teacher Created Materials, which was founded by Rachelle Cracchiolo in 1977.
From Hobby to Global Business
“Nearly 40 years ago, Rachelle was an elementary school teacher in the Fountain Valley School District,” says her daughter Deanne Mendoza, the executive vice president of the company. “While she was pregnant, she wrote an art education book, Quick Fun Art. She went to three publishing companies, but no one would publish it. She finally decided to self-publish. It began as a hobby, but became the global business that we have today.”
While the enterprise writes materials in English and Spanish, the company’s corporate partners translate teaching materials into 12 languages, giving the materials a global reach. Covering reading, writing, mathematics, social studies and the sciences designed for students from preschool to high school, much of the company’s international business is focused on English-language education – a growing demand in many parts of the world as English remains the world’s most widely spoken language.