Houston This Is It Soul Food began its legacy in 1959 and is still flourishing and standing strong as the fourth generation works diligently to accept ownership. Craig Joseph inherited the family restaurant from his grandparents with the understanding that the road to success is not easy or straight, but as long as he has determination, perseverance, faith, and Jesus, he will be successful. Frank Jones, the founder of This Is It, inspired Craig and made sure that he followed these principles: always maintain public acceptance: don’t forget your roots: always protect your wealth and share it with family and friends.
As Joseph grooms the fourth generation to assume ownership, he has not only instilled Jones’ principles but has added one of his own. When Jones, or “Tap” as many called him, was nearing his homegoing, he spoke with each one of the vendors and asked them to promise him that they would take care of his boy, Craig. To this day, they are all still standing by that promise, and Joseph has no shame in saying that he would not be where he is today without those relationships. As he is teaching the ins and outs of owning a restaurant business to Christopher, one of his sons, Jessica, his daughter, and Thaddeus, his son-in-law, he preaches to them every day that they will only have continuous success if they nourish and respect their relationships with one another and anyone who has genuinely worked with them or he for the overall success of This Is It.
Believe it or not, within just the last three years, Christopher, Jessica, and Thaddeus have each seen the beauty and the beast behind maintaining and ending relationships. They are gaining greater respect for their father’s words of advice day by day. Joseph does not tell them “I told you so”, but he simply sits in his spot, gives them the look with a nod, and they know a lesson is to be learned at that moment. While respecting the integrity of the food, they do intend to expand the business. Since renovations are complete, their focus this year is to utilize their large private rooms for business meetings, community gatherings, and catering. With 61 years of business lifting them up, the fourth generation is confident that they will continue the family legacy for many more years to come.