Reaching for a Star
The Extraordinary Life of Milan Kroupa
Josef Čermák, translated by Paul Wilson
The rags-to-riches saga of one of Canada’s most successful entrepreneurs.
After a turbulent childhood in Communist Czechoslovakia, Milan Kroupa turned his back on a promising career in soccer and fled the country of his birth. He arrived in Canada as a refugee in 1968 at the age of twenty-five, with a new wife and a new baby. He had little more in his pocket than good advice from his father, who taught him that there are as many opportunities in the world as there are stars in the sky, and that the secret is to grasp the star that attracts you and never let it go. In 1977, he founded United Cleaning Services and quickly expanded it into a multi-million dollar, countrywide enterprise that now employs almost five thousand people, many of whom are immigrants. His story is an inspiration to everyone, particularly to the countless new arrivals whose most valuable asset, to themselves and to the country, is their hope for the future and their determination to succeed.