They say the best place to start is the beginning. I was born in the suburbs of Detroit in September of 1983. I am a middle child with two brothers. I had a great childhood. In high school I came out of my shell and enjoyed a robust social life.
After graduating, I quickly realized that I had absolutely no idea what I wanted to do with my life. I ended up deciding that I liked the idea of making movies. Making movies was not a passion of mine but I had made a few with friends, they were funny, and I enjoyed the process. I was accepted and attended Ferris State University.
Three semesters later I dropped out. I had absolutely no passion. I worked a few random jobs for the next year and a half, I really felt like I was going nowhere. One day I was watching the movie October Sky with a friend of mine, as it ended, I felt inspired to not waste my life anymore. It was honestly a very profound moment (Thanks Jake Gyllenhaal). The following day I call admissions at Ferris, got right back into my program and less than a month later I was back in school.
I graduated in 2007 with a BS in television and digital media production and landed an internship at a corporate video production house. They liked me and offered me semi regular contractual work as a freelancer. Boom, the entire economy collapses, and we enter “The Great Recession”. The video work became less frequent, and I ended up picking up some side work landscaping.
Come the winter holidays (not much landscaping in the cold), I got a job selling commissioned computer sales at in build your own computer department of Micro Center. Did I mention that I’m a big nerd? I was good at it, and I liked it. I know a lot about computers, but I also know how to talk to people, and work with them to find a solution to their problems. I was promoted to their higher revenue, higher paying, position selling Apple products. It was the first time I made decent money based on my ability to sell, and it felt like I was discovering my real talent.
It was at microcenter that I met my good friend and future business partner Dave. When he graduated college, he left to join a college hire program at The Yellow Pages. He was making twice as much as me quickly and threw me a referral. I got accepted and excelled the at the program. I was selling both print and digital adverting to business owners all over southeast Michigan. I discovered another aspect of myself at YP… I don’t like working for somebody else, and I don’t like corporate America. Meeting with self-employed, self-made, business owners 5 days a week for a couple of years really rubbed off on me.
I decided to start my own side project and sell websites with one of my colleagues. Just like that Avant Garde Media LLC was born in my back office/man cave of my house. When we sold our first website, neither of us knew how to build them, I just designed on using a site builder and the client was happy. Shortly after we rebranded as MI Digital Solution. After a few websites had built and paid for my passion for the business was flying high. I quit my job at YP (to avoid further conflicts of interest), joined an IT company as their marketing manager to pay the bills, and I kept selling and growing.
My partner was not as passionate about the company as I was, he let me buy him out and it was all mine! About a year later I reached a point where I could take the plunge and operate full time. That lead to explosive success! Remember my friend Dave from Microcenter and YP? He started referring clients to me. I think he could see the writing on the wall and wanted a taste. After a few years, we I could afford him, Dave joined as my VP of Sales and my business partner. Between his sales expertise and my direction of development we grew MI Digital Solution into a multimillion dollar adverting firm with hundreds of clients all over North America.
As president of MI Digital Solution, I’ve be able to explore my passions for helping business owners thrive and compete in a complex digital environment. That love of helping people has led to this project. If MI Digital Solution is my baby, Kanisium is my grandchild. I intend to spoil it with all of my knowledge and love for the world that gave me so much opportunity. I hope you, dear reader, can find the business love of your life and truly discover your passion.