MEET: Leah Garrah, owner of Pretty Clean: A Mobile Maid Service
First Posted: 3/16/2015
Leah Garrah is the owner and operator of Pretty Clean: A Mobile Maid Service. Garrah, 35, is a native of Ashley and is a 1998 graduate of Hanover Area High School. She is also a graduate of Luzerne County Community College and Misericordia University, where she received a degree in marketing. In addition to her own business, she also does expo work with Wild Pennsylvania Beef Jerky and Cheese Shop in Wilkes-Barre. She also does voice-over work for films and has been involved with local theatrical productions. She has two children: Antonia, 15, and Eva, 7. She lives in Edwardsville.
What first inspired you to open your own cleaning business? I was working full-time in sales, and I got tired of this area not providing of good selection of secure jobs that offered financial security. So instead of taking a few part-time jobs, and trying to juggle that with my life at home with my two girls, I just decided I was going to clean. I have that leadership personality, and I decided to make my own schedule, my own hours and be a real go-getter. I started cleaning for my friends, and it just went from there.
What do you enjoy about it? Meeting new people, and finding similarities and things that we have in common. Mostly, building rapport. That’s my biggest thing. People trust me. After meeting me for the first time, they feel like they’ve known me forever. And it’s nice to have a new customer call you, and say, ‘I was referred by one of my other customers, and you came highly recommended.’ And it’s nice to show them that after one or two initial cleanings, that what they heard was true.
And what about your work with Wild Pennsylvania? The owner and I are good friends. He’s one of my Pretty Clean customers, and we built a great rapport, and he entrusted me right off the bat and offered me some work. He needed help starting up the store and getting it up and running, so I helped. And I continue to help with expos.
Didn’t you also recently do voice-over work in a feature film? I did. It’s called ‘The Meet’ and it’s in post-production right now for the Sundance Film Festival. It’s horror/thriller. The possibilities, or where it goes from there, I don’t know … but I’m very excited about it.
You appeared in the Back Mountain Harvest Assembly’s holiday production, “The Gift.” Do you enjoy acting? I’ve always had a passion for acting. And I also sing and dance. My friends, or even customers, all get a kick out of me. They all tell me that I missed my calling a long time ago. But it’s never too late to start acting. Unlike modeling, acting takes all shapes, sizes and ages.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time? I like to spend as much time with my daughters as I can. We have mommy/daughter time, whether it’s going and getting our nails done, or just doing it at the house. It’s just that quality time.
Any hobbies? I also enjoy making handmade jewelry. And I’m trying to get into soldering. I plan to start an online store, and maybe someday have my own little shop, tailored to up-cycled, handmade, one-of-a-kind pieces.
Favorite music? I’ll always be a Mariah Carey fan. I also like some county and ‘80s pop, like Boy George, Whitney Houston and George Michael. I also like The Rolling Stones.
Favorite color? Pink.
Favorite city? New York.
Favorite vacation spot? Anywhere warm and tropical.
Favorite thing about NEPA? The history – the melting pot, which made this area what it is. My great-great grandfather was one of the 12 men that started the First Assembly of God churches in this area.
Favorite food? Pizza.
Favorite TV show? I can’t even miss an episode of ‘Vampire Dairies.’ And I enjoy watching some of the old black and white shows, like ‘The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show.’
All-time favorite movie? ‘Elf.’
Favorite quote? ‘I can do all things through Christ, who gives me strength.’
Favorite holiday? Thanksgiving.
Most influential person? “My mom. Looking back, she was hard on me. She was a single mom, and she had to work a lot. And though she might think she made mistakes and did some things wrong, my mom did everything 100 percent right. She did it the exact way it was supposed to be. I look at certain situations and certain circumstances, and the way I conduct myself, and it’s all because of my mom. I learned how to be a much better person.