I started working at age eight selling cards, wrapping paper, and ribbon door–to-door. By the time I was twelve, I had saved enough money to buy my first lawn mower. Fortunate to live in central Florida where it rained nearly every day, and the grass grew two inches each week, I enjoyed a thriving yard business!
By the time I was sixteen, I sold that business and went to work for Jim Gooding, founder of Gooding’s Groceries! Starting at $1.15/hour, I sorted returnable glass bottles in a metal roofed concrete block storage area in the 97 degree heat. Within months, however, I was promoted to bag boy, and learned from one of the finest supervisors ever, Jim Butler! I double bagged heavy items (like cans), and put light weight items (like crackers and chips) on top. I put ice cream in freezer bags, packed cold items with cold items, bagged meat separately, and put eggs and bread on the car’s front seat! I was really, really good at what I did, and ultimately was promoted to order for, and stock, all frozen foods. Before I left Gooding’s just a few years later to enroll at Georgia Tech, Jim offered me a job as assistant manager for his new Inverness store.
At Tech, I worked two part-time jobs and took twenty credit hours per quarter to pay for school and graduate on time. I stayed an extra year to earn a master’s degree, and entered Emory University’s School of Dentistry the next fall.
Never did I imagine the challenges, victories, or daily discoveries that owning and operating a general dental practice could bring!! Through thirty-eight years, I have been blessed with the responsibility of caring for some of the finest people on earth. Many became close friends, and nearly all became a joy for me to see.
On the fifteenth of this month, I will cease to practice, and so will end my truly astounding career! How blessed am I to have experienced the life I’ve lived?? Whether selling cards, bagging groceries, or restoring teeth, I’ve always given my very best to whomever I served… And that’s life, isn’t it? Always giving your best to others, and living with a spirit of abundance! And now, looking back on an extraordinary career, I’m “on top of it all!” Thanks be to God…
“What you get by achieving your goals is not as great
as what you become by achieving your goals”