Indiana man with Down syndrome overcomes obstacles, creates doormat business

An Indiana man with special needs is proving there are no obstacles in life.

Jacob Kiefor, 22, has Down syndrome. Just like all of us, he has hopes and dreams -- and now those dreams are coming true.

Less than a year ago, Jacob had an idea to start his own business. He would paint made-to-order doormats.

"My dream is to have my own office and my own desk and now I have both of them,” he said.

The business is called “This is Jacob.” He turned his disability into a huge ability. He has the patience, unlike some of us, to paint for hours a day.

"Everybody's got that special talent and we just happened to find it,” said Jacob’s mom Melanie Bennitt.


Jacob's mom and stepdad have both run businesses before, and they knew his creativity would pay off.

His dad is encouraged by how much more than a job it really is.

"He gets self-worth out of this. It keeps him busy. It keeps him occupied,” said dad Ken Kiefor.

If you are interested in obtaining a doormat created by Jacob, all you have to do is send him a design, he prints out a stencil and then he gets to work. The mats range from $25 to $45, depending on the design and size.

"It feels like the world is giving me hope,” Jacob said.

"Maybe that new mom sitting on the couch that just got the diagnosis, she's trying to process all this, maybe she could see that if he can, their child can,” Melanie said.

Jacob is raising money so he and his mom can attend the National Down Syndrome Congress. His ultimate goal is to have a booth at the conference and a self-driving car to deliver his creations.

Visit Jacob's website at