As accolades pile up, retiring Morristown businessman can’t help pitching his wigs

 

They were going out in style on Tuesday, winning a Triple Crown of sorts: Proclamations from their pastor, their mayor and the NAACP.

Jim and Bessie Broome with son James IV and employee Maria Zapata at Morristown council meeting. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

Jim and Bessie Broome with son James IV and employee Maria Zapata at Morristown council meeting. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

Yet you scarcely would guess that Jim and Bessie Broome are retiring from their Morristown wig business–not after Jim’s thank you speech to the town council.

Customers hail from near and far “because we put pride in what we do, and we keep prices low, and we don’t sell just hairpieces,” said Jim, launching into a radio-worthy pitch that left everyone primed for follicular adventures. [Fast forward video to 6:30.]

“We also sell growth creams to help your hair grow!  We don’t give up on you. If you don’t want a hairpiece, that’s fine. If you want to grow your own hair, or if you have dandruff, or if your hair’s breaking off, we’re here to help you!”

At least, until Aug. 23, 2014.

Mayor Tim Dougherty congratulates the Broome family. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

Mayor Tim Dougherty congratulates the Broome family. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

That’s when the Broomes shutter the Beauty Charm Co. that Jim opened on Speedwell Avenue in 1970.  Jim, 75, said his wife has had enough with the long hours.

For the moment, however, the Broomes, their son James IV, and longtime employee Maria Zapata are enjoying a victory lap.

The Broomes’ pastor, the Rev. Teresa Lynn Rushdan of Bethel A.M.E. Church in Madison, hailed their “outstanding entrepreneurship.”

Jim Broome entertains town hall after receiving proclamations for his wig business. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

Jim Broome entertains town hall after receiving proclamations for his wig business. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

Keith Bodden, of the Morris branch of the NAACP, relayed congratulations from state conference President Richard Smith for “caring, quality service [that] continues the legacy of honesty, dignity and courage” of African American business people that pre-dates the American Revolution.

Citing the Broomes’ sensitivity helping victims of medical hair loss, Mayor Tim Dougherty proclaimed Aug. 23 as Beauty Charm Company Day in Morristown.

Customers aren’t the only ones who will be out of luck after that day. The Broomes’ son has spent his entire 36 years at the store.

“Now he’s gotta look for a new job!” said his dad.



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