When I was in high-school I enjoyed looking through books with paintings done by Norman Rockwell, admiring his talent and the time he spent in his life illustrating his greatest love, people. I always loved the pictures of peace and solitude; the paintings of an era in history when America was young and our country was not so fast paced; days  when simple things were appreciated and memories told a story with a painting instead of words. Having lived most of my life with a disability that kept me from following the generations of my family who served in the military, I used my art talent to help foster a purpose in life as I expressed my heart and emotions onto paper and canvas. I have always enjoyed aviation art due to growing in the military and having the opportunity to watch as helicopters and planes flew over my house daily. I would watch and dream of doing the same thing some day; and although I was unable to pursue that desire, being able to illustrate and paint my dreams onto canvas, whether for individuals, businesses or the sheer pleasure of it, helped to fill that void and bring joy into my life.  Having this purpose helped to provide fulfillment in exchange for my dreams of childhood.

How SCORE Helped: 

Client is an excellent artist and commercial illustrator.  He is severly handicapped and unable to be employed outside his home.  Employers refused to hire because client was subject to severe siezures.  Client had been seeking startup funding from the Florida Division of Vocational Rehab without success.  He was informed that without a funding proposal/business plan, the State could not process his request for a grant.  We in Chapter 439 met with Florida State Rehab personnel, sought advice as to what their actual requirements were for submitting a request for a startup grant, and provided client assistance in developing the required funding proposal/business plan.  Within two (2) months, we developed the plan, published it and submitted it to the State of Florida.  We succeeded and the client was awarded a $10,000 new business startup grant.  The process was extremely time consuming as client could not formulate the desired document and required extensive interviews by his SCORE mentor to acquire the information that was needed to develop the plan.  After three (3) years of trying on his own to acquire the funding, this SCORE Chapter succeeded in just two (2) months.  No further waiting period was imposed by the State and the required start up art and illustration equipment and material was purchased.