An unexpected, beautiful life adventure...
HEY THERE! HERE'S THE SHORT STORY
I was born in the 70s, and bounced around from neighborhood to neighborhood.
All different types. But I always stayed focused and kept my act clean… for the most part. I’m a native of Seattle’s inner city and son of a powerhouse single mom who taught me that opportunity doesn’t knock, you have to go get her attention.
SHE TAUGHT ME TO ALWAYS:
Be excellent at everthing you do.
Do what you say.
Treat people right &
be greatful along the way.
From an early age, I had this crazy ability to blend and make others see me as I wanted. Perception became a sort of game to me and I was always building new characters to level-up. Probably had something to do with my childhood obsession with video games. My first love, even more than games was music.
A Bigger Pond
I started competing in talent shows, performing on stage and joining musicals at age 7. By 15, I was hustling homemade demo tapes for my R&B group out of a vintage suitcase. By 16, I caught my dream and landed a major label record deal.
As the lead singer/songwriter of a marginally successful R&B group
I toured the world throughout the 90s - immersed in every aspect of the music business. Along the way I found myself captivated by entrepreneurship, brand creation and product development. I especially loved the creative process of taking an idea and bringing it to life. I guess it reminded me of the satisfaction I got from the songwriting process.
BUT NOTHING LASTS FOREVER. AFTER A series of unfortunate events, MY LABEL folded AND I FOUND MYSELF LOOKING FOR A NEW PATH.
If i'm no longer a singer... what am i?
My interest in entrepreneurship took over in my 20’s and started failing forward trying different shit, looking to replace that feeling from the boyband glory days. I wandered the planet searching for my “thing". I started a computer repair business, a web design company, door to door sales, network marketing, video game console modding and repair shop and countless other ventures.
Eventually I left my hometown of Seattle and landed in real estate development in Los Angeles where I met wife, Amy.
Real estate is where I had my first huge financial win. And loss. Washington Mutual went bankrupt and my business went down with them.
I WAS FORCED TO WALK AWAY FROM MILLIONS IN ASSETS.
There I was back at Ground Zero.
My wife, Amy is pregnant, we have a one-year-old, and i’m tapped the fuck out.
This was a depressing time in my life. I spent a few years rebuilding and sorting through the rubble to find my teeth. I used my failure to fuel success - moving on to architect and run dozens of companies in corporate & small business consulting, creative services, video production, digital marketing and SAAS tech.
It’s not as if it was easy, but once I started really understanding what was truly my motivation and driving me, I was on fire. Understanding myself and what made me tick (or not tick) was the key. I finally figured out what I was searching for. After a nearly catastrophic business blow that left me $99 BILLION in the hole (I'll save that story for another time) I pivoted and landed on my feet,
only this time I was crystal clear on the mission, had decades of experience, an incredible network and a killer team around me.
I had only 4 requirements:
1. IT HAD TO BE WITH THE RIGHT HUMANS (check)
2. I HAD TO DEEPLY GIVE A SHIT ABOUT THE THING I’M BUILDING (check)
3. IT HAD TO MAKE LIFE BETTER FOR THose we serve (check)
4. IT HAD TO BE SCALABLE ENOUGH TO TAKE CARE OF MY TEAM AND OUR FAMILIES
(TOP RAMEN DAYS ARE OVER)
I'm now48 years young, I have 3 beautiful kids, I'm married to my best friend, I'm surrounded by kind, good friends and I'm building a business I deeply care about. My 7 year old self who dreamed of being a famous singer and being on the cover of Word Up and Forbes, could never have imagined this outcome...and I love all of it, even the not so awesome parts.
Is it perfect? Not even close. I'm still learning, growing, hustling, building, fathering, husbanding and struggling to stay balanced along the way. I am living the life I chose and regardless if I still have yet to achieve some of my biggest dreams I've finally learned to be grateful for the adventure, the compounded wisdom, family, friends and blessings I've been fortunate enough to have every day.
Thanks for reading my story.
to be continued...Let's Talk