By Laurie Stone
Editor’s Note: This story is part of a weekly series on Portales business owners who have been with their respective businesses for at least five years.
For Mark Vigil and his family, owning Mark’s Restaurant and Catering has taught them the importance of lasting relationships that stand the test of time.
For the past two years, Vigil and his family have lived in Orlando, Fla. and have operated Mark’s Restaurant and Catering from a distance.
Mark and Karyl Vigil credit the integrity of their employees for their business success. Feeling they have acquired a staff that is more like family, Mark and Karyl refer to their employees as “the best of the best.”
“It’s obvious that we couldn’t do what we are doing now without them,” said Mark.
Mark has worked in the real estate business for the past two years and does a heavy amount of commuting. He and his wife have been in the restaurant business for the past 15 years.
Mark has desired to be a business owner since he was a young child, but was unsure what direction he would take.
“Karyl and I enjoy a wide variety of flavors in food and the atmosphere a restaurant creates which spurred us to open a restaurant,” said Mark.
They owned and ran the Steak in the Basket restaurant in three different locations — Artesia, Albuquerque and Portales.
Describing themselves as people blessed with an opportunity to serve others, they said their toughest obstacle has been finding people with a passion to serve others the same as their own.
“Once you find passionate people you feel very grateful because they help make your team stronger,” said Karyl.
Mark explained that finding employees with the same objectives as he and his wife brings comfort to them because it benefits the customers. “They’re able to represent us by providing the same level of service we do,” he said.
Karen Siewert has managed Mark’s Restaurant and Catering for the past 10 years. She said Mark has been a big support in her life calling him her best friend. “He supports me 100 percent, but when critical moments arise, he tackles them with constructive criticism that doesn’t tear me down,” said Siewert.
She said the long distance relationship between she and the Vigils has had its trying times, but it’s been a success because of the open line of communication in their business relationship.