Rob Moody, president and executive director of Good Will-Hinckley, Fairfield 

Rob Moody

To love what I do — just love it. The focus on doing what I am passionate about and truly makes me happy attracts positivity and surrounds me with positive people.

Also, to not be afraid of failure. I have failed at many things, but I have bounced back. That was advice given from my parents, Ronald and the late Sheila Moody. They demonstrated that in their lives. They both worked in education their whole lives. My mom was a cook at the school and my dad was the principal at the school.

 

 

 

Ames Cyrway, co-owner, The Framemakers, Waterville

Ames Cyrway

Bill’s (Taylor) advice to me was always be yourself; do not compromise yourself. That was something I took to heart because — one of the stories that I like to tell is creativity does need to have a role in our field. You can put a black frame and a white mat on something, but is that always the best option? Color theory comes into play, but also a little flair. There’s all kinds of different ways to make a product shine.

One of the things I have been known for is my interesting T-shirts. One day, I was listening to my dad about this, I don’t know why. He said you have to dress more appropriately for work. So one day, I come into work, and I am wearing a button-down shirt with one of those V-neck white T-shirts underneath, but Bill said, “It looks like you are wearing underwear.” He didn’t mind my interesting T-shirts, and to this day, I have the interesting T-shirts and it becomes part of what people recognize me for. Here I am at (a Chamber of Commerce) Business After Hours and everyone is in a suit and tie, and I am rocking a Transformers T-shirt.

 

Bill Sprague, owner and president, Sprague & Curtis Real Estate, Augusta

Bill Sprague Photo by Chris Bolduc

The best advice I ever got came from my father (Bill Sprague Sr.). He said you have to give back to your community. If you are working and making money, he said, you can’t just take; you’ve got to give back.

In my life, I have always been involved, either with my time, or donating money or energy and helping my community. And with that, there’s sort of a twofold. You are doing something good and positive for the community and second, there’s a great sense of fulfillment in making positive changes. I can always look back now and think on the dozens and dozens of things I’ve been involved with over time. I’ve met wonderful people, but also you look back and see positive changes, and I have been a small part of those things. Over the years, the Y, the Chamber (of Commerce), the Board of Trade, the hospital, the new (YMCA), the new high school, the new bridge — I was on some committee or some board.

It made sense to give back some of the nice things that happened to me.

 

Norman C. Hunt, vice president and founder, N.C. Hunt Lumber, Jefferson

Norman Hunt

To have a good neighbor, you got to be a good neighbor.

An old friend of mine, up in Augusta, had a machine shop and wore dirty clothes just like I do and got along with the working class. It was George Palmer, at Palmer Machine Shop.

I remember the day he told me that; it was probably 30 years ago. “Norman,” he said, “I’ve always said to have good neighbors, you have to be a good neighbor.” I’ve said that to my crew.

I worked my way through college at the cafeteria, and if I saw a person sitting by themselves, I didn’t care who they were, I would sit down and say, “Can you help us with something?” — I was the class president — and get them involved. I like to help people. I like to help the working middle class and give them a hand.

 

Leon Emery, owner, Emery’s Meat & Produce, Gardiner 

Leon Emery

The best advice probably, businesswise, came from my accountant, who said I should act less impulsively and take a little more time planning rather than jumping into expansion. So out of that came (a training program at) Thomas College, also came with Coastal Enterprises Inc. (which provides business financing) working hand-in-hand with our accountant. And it was great advice, because now as we expand, all the numbers make sense, rather than me saying, “I want a store in Brewer.” My accountant is Patty Flagg, right here in Gardiner.

 


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