Mike Palmer, 35

Mike PalmerMike Palmer of Novi is the owner of Premier Pet Supply in Beverly Hills. Mike's philosophy of creating a modern day "mom & pop" shop atmosphere has established Premier Pet Supply as a staple in the community and one of the highest-volume independently owned pet supply stores in the Midwest. The store was originally opened in 1992 by Mike's uncle Ray Hesano. In 1994, fresh out of high school, Mike began working at the store full time while taking business courses in college. After completing an Associates in Business Mike decided to forego school to take on a bigger role at the store. Mike bought half the store and vowed to his uncle to take on the daily operations and work tirelessly day in and day out building the business-and THAT he did!

Through the years the reputation Premier Pet Supply has earned is second to none. Mike has been involved in numerous community events, writes for a women's lifestyle magazine and speaks at schools on a regular basis to educate children about pet care, the responsibility of pet ownership and as an advocate for animal rescue groups. He has been invited to speak to kids about owning a business at several career day events in the West Bloomfield, Southfield and Birmingham districts. Mike has also been featured on local radio stations, WDIV and on Fox 2 News Detroit on several occasions to discuss with Alan Lee helpful hints on pet care and nutrition. His business model and expert customer service have been featured in nationally syndicated business talk show host Jeff Sloan's book "Startup Nation: America's Leading Entrepreneurial Experts Reveal the Secrets to Building a Blockbuster Business." Premier Pet Supply was voted in 2011 as the "Best Pet Supply Store" in metro Detroit in both Detroit's A-List and Vote 4 The Best! contests.

Mike hosts weekly adoption events with several rescue groups and in the past 10 years has been fortunate enough to help facilitate the adoption of over 3,000 cats and dogs. Two years ago Mike and Premier Pet Supply teamed up with a 9 year-old named Sophie who wanted to help families that could not afford to feed their pets.  The Birmingham Pet Pantry was created and has already proudly donated over 20,000 lbs of food! The food has been delivered directly to families in need and helped many people keep their pets. Through a partnership with the Birmingham school district Mike has been able to provide a job for several special needs and autistic teenagers on a weekly basis. Mike also created the Premier Pet Volunteer program for kids in the community. It's offered to kids between the ages of 8 and 12 and has been a huge success. It gives the kids a sense of entitlement and responsibility that they can claim as their own.

Always an advocate for buying local, Mike has made a concerted effort to carry any and every product available that's made in Michigan. His store is full of both hard to find items and the staples for all pets, with a focus on natural and holistic. Customer service has an added value at his store. Customers come not only for the selection but for the vast knowledge of pets and nutrition that Mike and his employees are proud to share.

Mike's greatest success overall is his family. He is the proud husband of his beautiful wife Rita and father of his amazing children Ava, Brooke, Fiona, Roman and dog Bruno. He credits his love of retail and dealing with people to his mother and is proud that she taught him the value of treating everyone with kindness, respect and generosity. His aspirations of becoming a business owner and his work ethic were inspired by his uncle Roy whom Mike models himself after as a father and businessman.


The information presented here was accurate as of January 2012.