How this Mother/Daughter Duo is Growing a City-Wide Daycare Business With help from CNM
The Twins Academy grand opening.

How this Mother/Daughter Duo is Growing a City-Wide Daycare Business With help from CNM

Erika Estrada-Quezada and her mom Norma Estrada just held the grand opening for their third daycare business here in Albuquerque
July 27, 2021

Last week Erika Estrada-Quezada and her mom Norma Estrada proudly stood in front of their newest daycare center during its grand opening. The bilingual center, called Twins Academy, is located on Montgomery Boulevard just west of San Pedro Drive.

Alongside Erika and Norma was a long list of high-profile leaders who had supported the duo as they built their newest location and became the proud owners of three daycares across the city. Attendees included Ernie C' de Baca, the President/CEO of the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce, and Norma Ang Sanchez, the Consul General for the Mexican Consulate. Several news outlets were also there to cover the event. 

“When we opened our first location, it was just friends and family during the celebration, so it’s great to see how much we’ve grown and how much community support we’ve developed,” Erika says.

Also at the celebration were several members of CNM’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC), which along with Crianza, a CNM business accelerator focused on early childhood education centers, helped Erika and Norma get their first daycare (Twins A & V Daycare Center on 4th Street) off the ground back in 2018. At the time, Norma had cared for kids for years out of her home and wanted the businesses as a way to grow. Erika came on board after she had twins—Victoria and Arianna—and saw the growing need for early childhood centers in their neighborhood on Albuquerque’s Westside.

In Crianza, the duo got help with everything from writing their parenting handbook to navigating state policies and procedures. Advisor Liliana Reyes from the SBDC then came in and helped Erika, Norma, and their cohort write up business plans, ensure their buildings were up to code, and advise in whatever capacity was needed.

The SBDC has also helped Erika and Norma get their other daycares, Twins Learning Center on Central Avenue, and Twins Academy, opened and off the ground. 

"The SBDC at CNM commends the entrepreneurial spirit and hard work that Norma and Erika have brought forth in making their business a success," says Fran Fernandez, Center Director of the SBDC at CNM. "It is a big challenge for any business owner to transition from a single home childcare service, to starting a commercial childcare enterprise. Erika and Norma did all this while working full-time jobs and attending classes. They continue to make a positive impact to our local economy and deserve additional recognition for serving the childcare needs of our community’s essential workers during the COVID pandemic.”

CNM President Tracy Hartzler wasn’t able to attend the opening because of a prior obligation, but she sent a letter to congratulate both Erika and Norma on their achievement.

“I’m very grateful to both of you for your passion to care for young children and to serve the critically important childcare needs of families in our community,” she wrote. “Your passion, your work, and your small business are so valuable to the future of Albuquerque. And the way you have skillfully grown your business sets such a great example for others who aspire to launch and grow their business ideas. On behalf of CNM, thank you for accessing CNM’s Small Business Development Center and our Crianza business accelerator along your inspirational journey.”

Right now Twins Academy has five teachers, but the plan is to eventually employ 12. The center has the capacity to serve 180 kids, ages six months to 12 years old, and runs from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. five days a week so parents can access both before and after-school care. Erika and Norma say that just like their other daycares, Twins Academy is designed to meet the needs of the local community, and they’re excited to help as many children and families as possible. 

“We’re very excited about this new location, and everything we do is focused on creating a better future for our kids,” Erika says.