Tracy Hayes makes money providing homes for people. She'd like to spend it on a home for animals.
WHO: Tracy Hayes, 33
WHAT: President of CWS, a $10-million short-term corporate-housing broker based in Austin, and an animal lover.
ROOTS: Born in Austin. Her mom worked in a hospital, her stepdad at a high school.
A REAL "GROWTH" INDUSTRY: CWS nearly doubled its revenues from 2000 to 2001, despite the collapse of Austin's economy. Hayes credits increased insurance claims, geographic expansion, and especially mold. (When dangerous spores appear in a house, the occupants must relocate for up to six months, and insurance companies foot the bill.)
TENANTS' RACKETS: Hayes has had some unusual renters, like the Saudi prince who needed two three-bedroom apartment suites to accommodate servants and multiple wives.
LAYING OUT THE WELCOME MUTT: Hayes grew her company by catering to the Big Slobbering Dog set -- people who have trouble finding temporary housing for themselves and their large dogs.
LIONS AND TIGERS AND BEARS. ALL MINE. Hayes's embrace of the four-footed extends to her private life. Her collection of animals numbers 29.
THE PRIMA DONNA: "A really prissy, pretty pot-bellied pig" named Pandora.
THE OFF-KILTER: A horse that's blind in one eye.
THE OBSCURE: A sugar glider, a tiny marsupial indigenous to Australia.
"A" IS FOR ANIMAL FARM: Five acres near Austin serve as home for the animals for now.
"Z" IS FOR ZOO: Hayes knows of an abandoned zoo that she would like to buy and develop into offices for pediatricians, speech therapists, and physical therapists. Parents could sweeten kids' trips to the doctor with a visit afterward to pet Hayes's ponies, rabbits, and donkeys.
MIKE HOFMAN was previously editor of Inc.com and a deputy editor at Inc. magazine, which he joined in 1996. The site was nominated for a National Magazine Award for Digital Media in 2010, and was named the best business website by Folio Magazine. In 2006, Hofman was part of a team of writers nominated for a Webby Award for best business blog. He lives in New York City. @mikehofman