In 1989 Darcella Goodman longed for the ability to spend more time with her school aged son, James, while he was still in school — becoming her own boss was the answer. Darcella and her husband Danny started GPro Janitorial, a residential and commercial cleaning service. The duo focused on the fundamentals: providing quality service and fostering professional relations. Years of success and growth, Darcella’s partner, in life and business, passed away. Determined to carry his legacy and pursue their shared goals, Darcella expanded GPro Cleaning into an industry training leader, providing online educational classes and entrepreneurial tools. She seeks persons with an interest in the industry and more importantly have a strong desire to obtain financial success and freedom, like she did 30 years ago.
“Darcella is committed to making the world better. She believes strongly that we are all God’s children, and therefore, we need to make sure that all people are treated with respect and have opportunities to succeed,” said Rabbi Debbie Stiel of Temple Beth Sholom.
Darcella has been an active member of Temple Beth Sholom’s congregation for years and serves as one of their liaisons to Doorstep.
“Darcella is a very down-to-earth person. She is quiet and not one to draw attention to herself, but she is always ready to help out.”
More than singing in the choir, Darcella is a retired board member of Temple Beth Sholom. Her faith helps guide her daily actions and core ethos; it also makes her the first African American Jewish woman to hold the position of president of the NAACP chapter.
In her first year as president of Topeka NAACP she focused on increasing awareness of work and impact, historically and recently. An example of one such effort was resurrecting the Freedom Fund Banquet, which was once an annual event but had been on a four-year hiatus. Formulating and fostering a community relations program between local law enforcement agencies and citizens of Topeka and Shawnee County is also of high importance.
She is passionate about boosting entrepreneurship opportunities for all. NAACP’s mission is to support African-Americans and equal access to education and housing. The Topeka chapter has just shy of 100 members.
Rabbi Stiel believes Darcella is someone who can bring people together and find common ground.
“Bridge builders make great organizational presidents.”
“Topeka unfortunately, like a lot of cities, remains more segregated than it should,” said Stiel in an interview with KCJC. “The NAACP has an important role to play in raising awareness about the need for things like affordable housing, good job opportunities for African Americans and good mentors for African American youth.”
Darcella just concluded her two year term as the commissioner of The Topeka Human Relations Commission (Feb 1, 2020). The Topeka Human Relations Commission consists of nine members who represent citizens with disabilities or from diverse gender, racial, ethnic, commercial and industrial segments of our community. The commissioners are appointed by the mayor from council nominations.
“When serving on the Topeka City Council, I always knew I could talk to Darcella about any Human Relations question. Commissioner Goodman has a heart of gold,” said Elaine Schwartz. “As a member of Temple Beth Sholom, I know when she sponsors an Oneg, we are going to have good eats, and her lovely voice in our choir brings a smile to all our faces. She has a lovely smile, too.”