NewsUplifting Arizona


Street vendor given 'dream job' by Valley car dealership

Sebastian Ibanez car salesman
Posted at 4:38 PM, Feb 27, 2023

MESA, AZ — A Mesa street vendor known for selling mops and brooms is seeing his luck turn around thanks to community support and a trending social media video.

For the better part of a decade, Sebastian Ibanez has supported his wife and three kids by selling brooms and mops on Valley streets.

Triple-digit heat, freezing weather, and high winds did not stop Ibanez from putting in hours on street corners, selling his products to residents.

As a blind man, he still finds ways to sell with a smile.

In a recent social media video with hundreds of thousands of views, the original poster asks if his brooms are any good. Ibanez replies with a joke saying, “I start sweeping the floor and it looks dark. I’m done sweeping it still looks dark.”

In the video, Ibanez says he’s struggled to find work, so he created his own. He said he’d go to a job interview and employers would typically only see the cane he uses to check his surroundings.

ABC15 recently caught up with Ibanez who said his "mom's been burned, he was hit by a car and his wife has cancer."

The video shared around the world helped raise over $100,000 for him — an amount of money that he says could "solve his life for a year."

Ibanez says he'd trade all of that for an opportunity Tim Brown gave him.

“Why wouldn’t I hire him? No question,” said Brown after being shown the video by a friend.

Brown is a fourth-generation owner of Brown Brother’s Automotive in Mesa. In the video, Brown offers Ibanez his dream job of becoming a car salesman.

ABC15 was at the dealership lot when Sebastian got out of the car to give his wife a kiss and start his new career.

Brown said Ibanez has the best trait a salesman can have: just being a good person with the right attitude.

“I could still lose an arm and a leg and still sell a car,” said Ibanez.

Having a good sense of humor doesn’t hurt either.

“People are always going to need cars. That and tamales,” he said.

RELATED: ABC15 has profiled Ibanez and his inspirational story on multiple occasions in the past.

While Brown walked Ibanez around the dealership lot, Brown told his newest hire how he received a call from a prospective buyer who wants to work with Ibanez in purchasing multiple cars.

What has happened to him in his past may not be much to smile about, but seeing how he’s reacted to it all could make him the most qualified candidate in the Valley.