1. My family is nuts. My mom, Denise, is one of 15 kids (yeah, for real) and has an identical twin, Deneen. My dad, Bruce, also has a twin and is the only hearing child of deaf adults (OHCODA). In other words, my dad's twin brother and parents were all born deaf and my dad has been their liaison to the hearing world since birth. My mom was a teacher and school administrator and my dad was a Chief Technology Officer. Coincidentally, I have a passion for teaching people about technology.
2. I have played lacrosse for over 20 years and had the chance to compete in NCAA national championships and coached Salisbury University’s club team to the NCLL national championship game. I have coached in every community that I've operated restaurants in which include: Fort Mill high school in Fort Mill, SC, Millbrook high school in Raleigh, NC, and currently, Broughton high school in Raleigh, NC.
3. I helped build a fast casual concept, Tenders/PDQ, from inception to 15 units (at the time that I left) and worked as a general manager for just about three years. I volunteered for the first four months and slept on an old college couch because I was determined to show the world my skills and make the brand a success. At the original unit, we ended up growing average weekly sales from $23,500 to over $44,000 in under a year. To facilitate this growth, my team and I created and executed a sales building plan based around catering, sales training, PR and social media.
4. I wrote a book called "Triple Your Tips
" (click the link and request access) and filmed a web TV show
illustrating its principles. The whole concept was based around teaching FOH staff how to make more money and have more fun. This was the experience that prompted my social media consulting and pseudo Internet fame.
5. I started the first ever pedicab (bike taxi) business in Ocean City, MD, called Coastal CruZn. I also wrote a pretty humorous blog to document the experience (which was a very interesting one). The business was later sold and the operation is still alive and well in Frederick, MD.
6. I served as the National Sales Director at talklocal
(TL). We invented Pay-Per-Conversation™ marketing technology that connects consumers and local businesses in real time and got funded by a prominent VC group in Washington, DC. TL is well on their way to becoming a household name.
7. I've written four books (most recently hungrybook.org
) and am in the process of writing a Dummies book about social media. I'm not the best writer ever, however, I am good at disseminating a lot of information and showing people how to attain significant results. Here's another book that you'll enjoy if you're a restaurant pro and want to know more about online optimization: More Customers, More Often
(click the link and request access).
8. I'm passionate about philanthropy and actively participating in the community that you operate in. I currently serve as a marketing consultant for ENDcrowd.com
which is a crowdfunding platform for groups from around the world that battle human slavery. I'm also a consultant and volunteer for newhope
9. I attended the Franklin P. Perdue School of Business at Salisbury University and received my BA in Economics, my BS in business management and my MBA. Yes, Perdue, as in the chicken company, facilitated my education and I have an abnormally soft spot in my heart for the yardbird as a result.