On April 15th, 1995 my awesome parents brought me into this world and immediately had me on the water. I am from Grayson, Ga so most of my time spent on the water was on Lake Lanier, Lake Hartwell, and on the Panhandle of Florida. Since I was a month old I have been learning the ropes, how to operate and captain a boat and fishing all thanks to my Dad, Greg. Between a 34’ Sea Ray and a 36’ Chris Craft Sportfish, my time on the water never got old. Growing up on the water has been the number 1 influence on who I am today.
My parents moved our 34’ Sea Ray to Panama City and Port St joe when I was around 7. This is where my passion for Saltwater began. We spent countless trips and weekends exploring and fishing the Panhandle. That time spent with my family was some of the most memorable times in my life. I still remember catching my first Kingfish and Dolphin 15 miles off Port St Joe at that age. Since then, I’ve been hooked. Living in Georgia, the Saltwater always lingered in the back of my mind while I was in school. That’s all I could think about. When would we be back down there. Luckily, I was blessed and my parents took us all over creation so getting back down to Florida came easy.
Throughout my teenage and college years, I was able to travel a lot, both with friends and family. The Florida Keys was my favorite place to go. I was dive certified and I loved to fish. What better place to go? Offshore fishing caught my attention. I knew that type of fishing was for me. Going 30+ miles offshore is different ball game. You must be ready, you must be prepared, and you must know your stuff or the day is not only a total bust but a total hole in your pocket. I guess it is the experience that drove me towards offshore fishing. While in college I developed a fever for Inshore fishing as well. Redfish caught my eye. The way they pull and explode on your bait is thrilling and it is still my favorite inshore fish to catch while Snook is a close second. My passion for fishing grew tremendously while in college. I bought my first boat when I was 20 which I still have today. A 1987 Proline 25 Offshore Walk-around with twin Yamaha 4 Stokes. We spent nearly 2 years restoring it and making it a reliable offshore fishing machine. Now I make constant 50 mile runs out of St. Petersburg with it.
In May of 2017 I graduated with a degree in Finance from the University of North Georgia. Leading up to that I was trying to find the right job, so this meant applying for beginner positions within the Finance Industry. In late March, I was sitting on my couch at school applying for these positions with various companies when I ran across Joe and Luke’s ad for “Customer Happiness Director”. Since I was a long time follower of Salt Strong, I checked it out and applied for the job. Knowing Joe and Luke’s story and background in the Financial services, I immediately questioned what I was going to do with my life. Here are 2 guys who have lived and experienced the financial services industry and decided it wasn’t for them. I related to them because of our background in fishing and being on the water so I could see myself in the same situation in a decade. Next thing you know they gave me a call, we had a phone interview and then I was off to Tampa for the personal interview. Looking back, it’s crazy how it all meshed together and worked out. It was a blessing in disguise. Now I work for a company that cares about their customers and employees while teaching people how to catch more fish every day.
Salt Strong has changed my life for the good. I now live in a great area, working to become a better fisherman every day, while at the same time helping people catch more fish and help them create the same experiences I have been blessed with.