Embracing the Family’s Entrepreneurial Spirit
by Kimberly Bailey-Tureaud
Fully embracing the entrepreneurial spirit of her heritage, Las Vegas native Leslee Wilburn has established ILan Massage Studio, the city’s first family-oriented massage practice. The young single mother of two recently shared insights about the meaning of her family legacy, and lessons learned in starting her own unique business.
You are the granddaughter of longtime business pioneer Larry Wilburn, who owned the legendary Larry’s Sight & Sound Music [known today as Sight & Sound] in historic West Las Vegas?
Yes, I am. My father was Terryl (Terry) Wilburn, who passed away, and my mother is Angela. I started working in my grandfather’s record store at the age of 6, and was exposed to how to run a business. I had to learn how to do a payroll and other inventory paperwork as I got older. I always knew that one day I would have my own business.
How long have you been operating your massage business?
This October will make two years. I initially went into the Navy after I graduated from high school in 1995. After I enlisted in the Navy, I worked as a labor and delivery nurse. I went to North Carolina, Chicago, Virginia, and worked at the naval hospital in Maryland for the rest of my term. The naval hospital … is where the President of the United States — it was President Clinton at the time — goes for medical treatment. All families in the military and active duty [personnel] go to the naval hospital for their medical care.
What inspired you to become a massage therapist?
My aunt Denise was a massage therapist for 15 years. When she was practicing, I used to go to her job all the time. When I came back from the Navy, I paid my aunt a visit, and could really see how much less stressful the job was compared to working as a nurse. I realized that I could go into the massage therapy industry because I could still care for people with a healthy process and a natural touch. Having a nursing background is really helpful when you are exploring a career in massage or athletic therapy. I have been practicing for seven years now, working in various hotel property spas. I have established my experience in the medical category, because I do a lot of wellness massages.
Where is ILan Massage Studio located?
In the Lakes Business Park at 9061 W. Sahara Ave. There is additional information on my website, ilanmassagestudio.com.