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Leon Banowetz

Leon Banowetz excels at creating and executing advertising campaigns for leading businesses (like Ewing Autohaus, Hotel ZaZa and NorthPark Center, to name a few). But he’s also pretty good at what he deems “the Mr. Mom things.” As a dad of two – Lila, 4, and Weston, 3 – Banowetz splits his time as Mr. Mom and president of Banowetz + Company, a Dallas-based advertising and graphic design firm that he runs with the help of his wife, Molly.

Celebrating his 20th year in business (as well as his 20th wedding anniversary) this year, Banowetz has come a long way from the Iowa farm he once called home. The creative-minded dad started his company after graduating from college and working as a magazine art director (at the ripe age of 23), utilizing the work ethic he acquired in a household with 14 siblings. (Yes, you read that right.)

Years of hard, harried work continues to pay off for Banowetz – but not without some sacrifice. By choice, Banowetz says he and wife Molly staved-off starting a family until recently. “Our business was our baby,” he adds.

Growing up, there was always a younger sibling needing Banowetz’s care or attention. “Now as a parent, it takes a lot to rattle me. It’s kind of like ‘Been there, done that,’” he laughs. “My parenting style is pretty laid back. I have learned to go with the flow.” And does the dad-of-two wish to have a large family of his own? “We’re done,” he quips, playfully adding, “I’m too old.”

When he’s not bouncing between his office and White Rock Lake Park with the little ones, Banowetz says his biggest parenting battle is “walking the fine line between having fun [with your kids] and teaching them how to be a good person.”

The fun-loving dad opts for entertaining, yet quiet, activities with his kids, such as reading and creating art projects. “My childhood was a noisy one – now I prefer for the TV to be off,” he explains.

And after the kids hit the sack, Banowetz crams in a few extra hours of work into his day. When asked how he strikes a work-family balance, he comically retorts: “Does anyone ever?” But for someone who knows the true meaning of family (his mom has more than 40 grandchildren), we have a feeling he’s doing just fine.