Many folks have no idea I used to have a different career path before getting into the early childhood development business. I actually used to own a bakery distributing company. We delivered fresh baked pies, bread, rolls and other pastries to restaurants, hospitals, and various retail stores. I’d start my days at 3:00 a.m. and oversee our routes, looking for ways to drive profitability and build wealth. With my entrepreneurial mindset, I developed a pretty successful operation. I should have been quite satisfied with myself, but I couldn’t explain what was missing until I finally realized it.
I didn’t think I was making a difference in people’s lives.
Fortunately for me, that all changed with the development of Celebree Schools back in 1994. My mother ran a daycare business and I’d seen firsthand the impact of early education can have on children and their parents alike. I find such a tremendous amount of joy in watching these little ones grow and prosper. But I really started to find my inspiration in our teachers. We like to say that we ‘grow people, big and small.’ For me, that’s the development of our kids, but it’s also helping our teachers find meaningful careers.
After establishing 26 corporate owned Celebree Schools, we began to expand our footprint through franchising. To date, we have 50 locations either open or under development in 12 states and our goal is to reach 100 by 2025. From a financial standpoint, we’ve built wealth—not just for ourselves, but our family of Celebree School owners. But I believe every one of them agrees with my notion that your financial well-being isn’t nearly as rewarding as accumulating wealth where it truly matters. A wealth of knowledge. A wealth of friendships and goodwill. And a wealth of self-satisfaction that comes from knowing how together we’re making a difference in the lives of Celebree School’s children, parents, and owners.
That’s what I call being wealthy.
I think I have the best job in the world, it’s so much fun and rewarding. It’s this definition of wealth we want to share with others.