Sally Ream, Founder of Ream Design


Sally Ream and her sons are on a mission to make the world a little more beautiful, one outdoor space at a time.

Families across Boston start every morning by stepping out into yards brilliantly designed by Sally, a trained horticulturist, and her son Marcus, a landscape architect. To some people, this might be considered a luxury. But to Sally, exquisite outdoor spaces are an essential part of life.

“Ever since my kids were little, we’ve valued our time spent outside. In fact, my kids used to say, ‘Don’t let Mom go into the garden before dinner. We’ll never get anything to eat.’”

She started bringing her sons with her to worksites out of necessity as a working mom. Back when her boys were in middle school and high school, they’d load up the station wagon on the weekends and get to work.

Marcus, the artist of the family, was quick to adopt the design gene, studying landscape architecture in college with the sole goal of rejoining the family business. Thankfully, Alex also rejoined the family business, bringing his analytical mind to the trio — focusing on finance, development, and strategy.

Sally grew up in Kentucky, where the rolling hills and diverse wildlife inspired a lifelong love of nature.  But Sally’s Kentucky connection with MACKEY is purely coincidental. Sally credits Alex for discovering the small business financial coaching firm. She believes she couldn’t have found a better fit herself.

“It’s a perfect match,” says Sally. Not only has MACKEY helped transform Ream Design’s finances by using data as a driving force for decision making, but Sally’s also found a kindred spirits in the MACKEY team. From one environmentalism-loving family-owned business to another, MACKEY and Ream Design fit together like two peas in an (organically grown) pod.

MACKEY’s expertise in small business operations has helped Ream Design grow exponentially.  Once a “one woman, one truck” operation, Sally, Marcus, and Alex have more business than ever. A big part of their success has been through better understanding their ideal customer and targeting marketing efforts accordingly.

“We actually put together a $500,000 installation in just 90 days,” she says, recalling one of her most successful projects.

That job proved to be no fluke. With guidance, Sally and her family refined their practice, using every experience as an opportunity to learn new skills.  As a result, business continues to grow, and Sally continues to do what she loves the most: spending time in the great outdoors.

“I love coming to work each day and seeing people spread the goodness of Mother Nature.”