Nominated as one of “Thrives Local Leaders Finalists” in October, 2015

This was definitely a surprise, this was a program I was part of in 2013-2014. The program was suggested to me after a conversation of being a small business owner and the different challenges we face. Tony Brooks, Owner of “Coast Cafe” in Cambridge shared his experience as being part of the Interise program. I was pumped up and ready to apply however it was a really intense, 6 month program. Who knew that in the end I would gain friendships with other small business owners, knowledge of how to work with my employees, assistance with leadership, a 3 year business plan, SMART Goals, my niche, homework and feeling a bit uncomfortable facing those business fears. However, with a knowledgeable Instructor, Bill Galatis and a wonderful Program Manager, Johnny Charles the program was worth my time.

There were times I definitely wanted to give up and not return because I was faced with the things I did not want to do but Mr. Charles said, “I know one thing, you are going to complete this program and graduate if it the last thing you do”! With my classmates, my Advisory Board and his assistance I was able to finish. I presented my 3 year business plan to our class chosen panel and received superb feedback. It was just like being on “Shark Tank” except that you received their expert opinion on your plan.

With Thrive, each year they honor small business owner who embodies their mission, of job creation and community revitalization. As well as individuals who help them get there. The Local Leader winner was George Koulouris of the Grecian Gyro in Georgia.

I was glad to be nominated!!!