I was born in St. Paul Minnesota. I have an older brother and my parents are still together after 50 years of marriage. Both of my parents worked very hard and my brother and I were taught early to take care of ourselves and, if you wanted something, you had to work for it. My parents were gone to work before we woke up and they did not get home until long after school was over. My father also traveled a lot for work and was not home often.
After mowing lawns for money, I got my first job at 11 as a paper boy. And as soon as I turned 14, I started working at Burger King but kept the paper route for another year. My jobs that carried me through high school were: full service gas attendant, telemarketer, Video Update manager.
I played hockey in high school and did well in school. I was accepted to Iowa State and was awarded an academic scholarship. I was also a walk on freshman to the Hockey Team. It did not take long for the freedoms of college to take the discipline I grew up with and change the course of my life. It only took a year and half to lose my academic scholarship, quit the hockey team, and end up dropped out of school living back at home, not showing up to Junior Hockey invitations, and working as a parts runner for Midas. I lost my focus and direction and things were going to get worse before an eventual turnaround.
My parents moved to Hong Kong and I stayed at home. They said I could live in their house if I kept a full-time job or went back to school. I worked for Midas and was not feeling too good about myself. One day, I was followed home and jumped by a couple punks that broke my nose and rearranged my pretty face. When the cop in my kitchen asked if I knew who did it, I said “yes, but I’ll heal” and would not give up the names. I spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to get out of this hole, when a friend called me and inspired to enroll in St. Cloud State University and go back to school.
My first day moving into school with my two new roommates, I was arrested and put in jail for fake ID, minor possession, and buying for minors. I finally hit my low point. Facing charges and jail time for up to a year was all I needed to stop acting like an asshole. I went to my apartment, locked my bedroom door and only left to eat, go to class, and go to work where I washed airport transit vans at night. I came out in 6 months with a 3.8 GPA and renewed focus on what I can do with new opportunities. From that moment on, I was determined to be successful.
My senior year I did a marketing internship for ARAMARK Campus Dining and when I graduated, I was hired as a marketing manager, promoted to District Marketing Manager and then recruited to Buffalo Wild Wings Marketing Department. During these experiences I gained knowledge, met great people, but most importantly figured out that I did not want to work for anyone and was dead set on starting my own company.
After convincing Bobby to join me on an ambitious plan to become franchisees, we somehow convinced our wives and families to move somewhere not familiar to us and make a go of it. It is easy to look at it now and realize that my greatest accomplishment is creating an environment where people can become successful. I do not express enough how great it feels to see the people in our organization that are becoming great leaders and members of their community! I am truly proud and grateful for everyone who works in our organization!
Goals: To be the best Husband and Father as I can.
Hero: My Dad
“It doesn’t matter if you try and try and try again and fail. It does matter if you try and fail, and fail to try again” ~ Charles F. Ketting
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