My Story & Witness
(Photos of my daughter & I)
I was born in upstate New York and lived there until age six,. Dad was an engineer for Bendix Corporation. He was transferred from Schenectady to Detroit where we lived up to 1958, then he was transferred to Orlando, Florida where I grew up. He was named top field engineer fro the Bendix Connector Division the second year in Florida. I started playing sports in elementary school and played Pop Warner football in Detroit, and then baseball and football in Florida. Sports taught me about the importance of competing and the importance of discipline.
I attended four colleges to complete my undergraduate degree and worked thirty five jobs to get the money to pay for it. Six months before graduating from the University of Tennessee my father died at age fifty two. From then on I missed having him around as a mentor and coach. When I was growing up he always cheered for me at Pop Warner football games, when I hit my first home run in Little League, as the pitcher with the most wins and home runs in Pony League, and at the Kumquat Bowl Championship for junior high school,played at the Citrus Bowl. Dad was also, in my opinion, very smart, and a good father, except when he drank. I loved him but I did not understand what a professional drinker he was and how it affected his job, my mom and his relationship with my brother and sister. At age seventeen my brother dropped out of school, joined the Air Force and for the next twenty years I rarely saw him. My sister married early, divorced, and remarried the same man, and was married, until he passed away in 2015.
High school was when our family "dis-functionality" really showed up. I got hurt my senior year as quarterback of the Winter Park High School backfield, touted to be state champions in Florida football that year. When this happened my dad's drinking increased probably because I was unable to play my senior year and lost any chance for a football scholarship. Two years before graduation from college my parents divorced after twenty seven years and right after that he was fired from Bendix, because of his drinking. When my dad was entrepreneur driven and started a business designing and manufacturing his own line of connectors. For this he hired a WWII Veteran who had lost both legs in the war and walked with prosthetic legs, to head manufacturing. I remember this man had a 4-year old daughter born with an appendage growth on her left leg, but he loved her very much. I mention this because it really touched my heart because dad was so willing to help someone with obvious challenges, and I respected him very much for this, and learned from it, that it's not the "person in the fight" but "the fight in the person", and this man was a fighter!
My mother was always loving and the spiritual leader in our family and she taught me to pray and forgive myself, and others. Because of her, I have always worked on strengthening my relationship with the Lord, Jesus Christ
Upon graduating from the University of Tennessee the Vietnam War was raging, and I was going to be drafted. I decided to apply and was accepted into the U.S. Navy Officer Candidate School and for military flight training. I received my commission but during flight training we were informed that Vietnam was winding down and we could request an early out with an Honorable Discharge. I did, and then moved to California. After two years there doing odd jobs I decided to join the U.S Peace Corps and was assigned to Ethiopia. While there for two years I was sick with amoebic dysentery many times, typhoid fever, a kidney stone, broke my ankle from a motorcycle accident, and survived a severe case of Malaria.
Upon returning to the states in 1975 I went to the University of Central Florida (formerly Florida Technological University) and graduated with a M.Ed. in Counseling Psychology and minor in math. I then went to work for The Palms Counseling Center as a counselor and as manager in charge of opening five centers in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. After accomplishing this I left and opened the Counseling & Personal Growth Center, in Orlando, my own private practice for five years with a second office in Kissimmee, Florida.
My next step was starting a training company by hiring experts to do seminars all over the state. That led to starting, funding and running my company in 1984 named Business Development Center, Inc., in Orlando. The services I offered were the same that I do with The BOSS™. Then I realized I needed a business financing mentor so while reading Success Magazine 1984 issue with Diane Sawyer's photo on the cover, I read the second feature article titled: "Mr. Write-Jim Howard." This was about the late James "Jim" Howard, a Harvard graduate and owner of Symbax Business Services, New York City. Prior to this he owned the sixth largest public relations-finance firm in America that handled the successful "Nixon for President" election campaign. However, Jim's real core expertise was business valuations, how to raise funds, acquisitions and the purchase and sale of small businesses using his own valuation formula and strategic marketing.
In 1985 I was able to get in touch with Jim and he agreed to mentor me with one major requirement, I had to pay him $25,000 in advance for one week of training at his office at Rockefeller Center in New York. However, I did not have the money. Thus, I went to work learning how to write a business plan and then I ask a former consulting client to back me personally with $50,000, and he did. Six months later I successfully raised $1.25 million, with Jim's guidance for a military simulation startup. From that time forward Jim always invited me to the Harvard Club for mentoring sessions when I was in New York. His was a priceless relationship that I cherished until he passed away in 1999. Jim's influence played a key part in my thoughts and ideas for The BOSS™ program which I will launch as my dream business some day.
My business and personal experience includes the pain of being forced out of two companies and a divorce I did not want, plus having my life turned upside down. This was when my brother was working as a consultant in Jakarta and invited me to visit him there, So, I wound up going there for six years. My first job in 1992 was Director of the MBA program at I.E.U. Institute of Management, a top ten Southeast Asian MBA university, in Jakarta. The owners were Abdul Gafur, a former Minister of Sports and Governor of Maluku, and his wife, Kemala Motik who was President of the university and from one of the wealthiest families in Indonesia.
In my second year my wife, an Indonesian, and I bought a consulting company, P.T. Cosmorindo Megah that we ran for six years. In 1996, I negotiated a multi-million dollar pro-basketball deal which stipulated I would raise $5M (US) in funding, develop the marketing plan, and secure pro-basketball support from the U.S. My partners were KOBATMA, the Indonesian pro basketball league and PERBASI the pro basketball association. Our partner was the Minister of Communication who was also Chairman of the pro-basketball organization. After eighteen months, ten round trips to the U.S., and securing $300,000 development funding in Orlando the deal came together in October 1997. One month later, November 1, 1997 President Soeharto appeared on Indonesian national television and announced that Indonesia's economy was in a tail spin and the very next day twenty nine major banks would be closed. This was the effect of what hat was termed the "Asian Economic Flu", which was the devaluation of five of Southeast Asia's country currencies. On January 18, 1998 my wife, who was seven and one half months pregnant, we were forced to leave everything, and under extreme duress, return to Orlando with barely enough money to rent an extended stay living apartment.
I started working on The BOSS™ as a concept in 1998 and in 2001 began putting my vision together. From January to March 2003 and August to October 2006 I had a self-funded business talk radio show in Orlando, named The BOSS™. From 2002-2004 I toyed with ideas about the method and platform to use to deliver The BOSS™ and in 2005 secured the domain name. I then started developing the website and initial draft business plan. In 2007-2008 new developments called for a change in the original website appearance as I realized I needed to focus more on using the various platforms available to deliver The BOSS™ products and services.
In 2008 after eight emergency trips to the hospital for a stomach problem my wife insisted I get a job. In late 2009 I was hired as a sales rep with the top vacation ownership company in the world, Wyndham Vacation Resorts, Inc., to work at their "Crown Jewel" location, Bonnet Creek. While there I became a top sales executive selling $6.7 million of vacation ownership/real estate in 6.5 years and was awarded Presidents Club trips twice.
I hope this has inspired you to take action and to go ahead and Start, Fund and Run your own business, and believe that:
"What you can conceive and believe, you can achieve, with the help of GOD"
and of course