Fortino’s life is a story of reinvention. He never planned to start a cleaning business. He was working his way through school with 60-hour weeks as a one-man cleaning service. However, the strain of the long hours, strenuous scrubbing, and lifting eventually took its toll and he suffered a crippling back injury. No longer able to physically do the work he loved, but with the knowledge needed to create a successful business model for a residential cleaning service, Fortino became the founder of Maids by Trade.
When he started his business from his garage in 1997, Fortino hired people he knew cared about the quality of their work as much as he did. His enthusiastic cleaning crews helped make the business an overnight hit. Fortino risked a lot to get his business off the ground, but it paid off. Now Maids by Trade is not only thriving, but it has expanded throughout Oregon and Washington. Maids by Trade is the first choice for customers who want a locally-owned maid service run by those who are passionate about cleaning.
Education & training
Fortino attended Portland Community College where he studied Business Administration. He is a regular at Portland State University where he takes business courses to constantly improve his everyday work. Attending many eco-responsibility training courses has led him to stay up-to-date on healthy cleaning practices and the latest green technology and techniques. With this education he has created training programs for the company’s new recruits—safety, cleaning, sales, and quality control, among others—is done at the company’s headquarters.
Family & friends
Fortino is devoted to his family, which includes his dogs Bibi, Bubu and Nona. As a loving pet owner, he understands the importance of choosing cleaning products that are safe to use around pets. Fortino took the needs of his family and others into consideration when implementing new standards of green cleaning. In 2009, Fortino collaborated with the national nonprofit Green Seal to develop rigorous green cleaning standards for house cleaning companies, bringing Maids by Trade to the forefront in eco-responsible practices.
Fortino enjoys gardening, hiking, and cooking. In his free time he likes gathering with family and friends, taking adventures and exploring the Northwest’s beauty, and attending cultural events in the city. He says “I feel very blessed that my life has been rich with dear friends, loving family, good health, and a career I really enjoy doing.” Beyond his family, he is most proud of how he was able to create a unique approach to house cleaning and build a business that is an integral part of the community.
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