GMNA - The Spirit of Small Business
TOPIC: The Spirit of Small Business: It's SOUL good to shop and dine local.
Small Businesses are the backbone of every community. They help to shape their community and add to its unique charm and character. The entrepreneurs who start these businesses take a chance on a dream and become an essential part of the communities in which they live, work and play. They generate jobs, support local non-profits and sponsor little league teams.
Small businesses have a huge impact on local economies. The owners develop relationships with their neighbors and help to promote foot traffic from one business to the next. By hiring local residents, those employees in turn support their fellow small businesses, running errands or purchasing goods. This helps to keep money locally earned and spent bringing the economy full circle.
Entrepreneurs serve the needs of the community and help to create innovative ways that fuel a healthy marketplace while better serving local consumers. By creating unique and one-a-kind products that are locally made, small businesses are turning their communities into a tourist destination.
Our guest speaker, Brad Usry, will share the history of Fat Man’s Hospitality Group and best practices for entrepreneurs. Brad Usry is President of Fat Man’s Hospitality Group. The group includes three restaurants and a wedding/corporate event space: Fat Man’s Mill Cafe, The Southern Salad, SnoCap Drive-in and Enterprise Mill Event Center. Brad has been in his family’s business since 1982. He led his family’s retail operation, Fat Man’s Forest, and its growth through the 80’s and 90’s before selling the businesses properties to Augusta University. Brad closed all retail operations after the sale and moved his restaurant and event operation to Enterprise Mill, along Augusta’s canal.
Usry is a graduate of from Augusta University with a degree in business administration and marketing. He was a founding member of the Augusta Sports Council, served two terms on the Convention and Visitors Bureau, and currently serves as Vice Chairman of the Augusta-Richmond County Coliseum Authority.