Her Business Is Her Castle

Cusumano's blueprint? Think small and network

Twenty-eight-year-old Julie Cusumano has dug 20-foot trenches and waded through rivers of wet concrete. Still, none of those feats took as much guts as her biggest building project: starting Castle Contracting, a 22-employee, $3 million construction and engineering firm in St. Louis. "What I learned from engineering is problem-solving," says the soft-spoken Cusumano. "You can look at a huge problem, break it down bit by bit, and solve it."

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