Gallatin Gentlemen on a Mission

Telling the Inspiring Stories of our Local Men of Influence

Article by Scott Bell

Photography by Lyndsey Sayles Photography

Originally published in Gallatin Lifestyle

Men of influence are the individuals who have made significant contributions to the betterment of our local area and even across the globe. They are the leaders who inspire and motivate others to take action and their impacts can be seen in all areas of life. They are true examples of giving back and those who continue to do what’s right even when no one is watching. Their influence extends beyond their immediate surroundings and inspires others to follow in their footsteps, creating a ripple effect of change throughout the community to serve as an inspiration for future generations.

Vice President for Economic Development and Regional Centers,
Volunteer State Community College

What can you tell us about your background?
I’m a native of East Tennessee (Go Vols!) and an 11th generation Tennessean. I was raised in a small rural town in Morgan County called Sunbright. I obtained my bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and received my law degree from Nashville School of Law. I joined Vol State in 2018 and currently serve as Vice President for Economic Development and Regional Centers. I’m married to my beautiful bride Mika and we’ll celebrate our seventh anniversary this summer.

What motivated you to start the journey you’re on?
Growing up in rural East Tennessee I saw firsthand the struggles that people faced and learned that education and jobs were often the common denominator. A community’s ability (or inability) to provide a structure for education and workforce and economic development determines the quality of life for its people. Communities lacking quality education systems, infrastructure, jobs and workforce opportunities unfortunately experience drug epidemics, high crime, poor health and despair. I felt led to try and help both communities and individuals become self-sufficient and succeed at creating a better quality of life. Community college is one of the greatest avenues to help communities and individuals do exactly that.

Realtor at eXp Realty

Who has been a significant influence or role model in your life?

My grandfather was an incredibly hard worker who built a successful plumbing business in our hometown. His work ethic has stuck with me my whole life as well as the way he treated people. He worked on holidays to ensure his customers were taken care of. He’d commonly forgive invoices if customers didn’t have the ability to pay. He built his business on service to others.

How do you give back to the community?
Each quarter we select a different non-profit and support them by asking our B3 (Business, Bonding & Beer) community to donate items, money and time to that non-profit. I serve as a Habitat for Humanity board member and Gallatin Young Professional advisory committee member. I have also started a Living in Gallatin video series where we share information about the community as well as highlight different businesses and business owners around town.

What are your hopes for the future of our community?
Growth here seems inevitable. The secret is out and people are falling in love with Gallatin! I’d like to see a healthy growth that embraces our existing charm and history, while finding a way to do it even better so everyone continues to win!

Co-Owner & Founder of Music City Health Center
Founder of MindShift International

What motivated you to start the journey you’re on?
I have been passionate about personal growth since I read my first Tony Robbins book at age sixteen. That opened my mind to the fact that if you change your mindset, you can change your life. After a near-death accident in 2018, I shifted from changing lives in our clinic, to changing lives around the world. I began speaking and running mastermind groups to help people become the best version of themselves and to live their best lives. I have been blessed to speak all over the U.S. and internationally and I’m also a TEDx Speaker.

What advice do you have for other aspiring business owners who are just starting out or looking to grow their businesses?
Focus on serving others! I built multiple businesses off of this: Jesus didn't come to be served but to serve, and then also, a Zig Ziglar quote, "You can get anything you want in life, if you help enough other people get what they want." Your business will grow in direct proportion to the amount of service you provide.  

Who has been a significant influence or role model in your life?
My dad has been a great role model and he's where I got my entrepreneurial spirit from.  I remember going to work with him when I was younger and dreaming about running a business of my own.

If you could go back in time and give your younger self any advice, what would it be?
Enjoy the journey! Life isn't about the goals you hit or the success that you achieve, it's about the person you become along the way. If you truly want to walk out the calling that God has on your life, you have to exchange your comfort for your calling. 

President, Co-Owner of All Access Coach Leasing

What can you tell us about your background?
I was born and raised in the Dallas area. I started singing at an early age and pursued a singing career which is how I ended up in Tennessee. My wife and daughter moved to Sumner County in 1992 and I took a job in June of 1992 traveling with Ricky Skaggs. I sold T-shirts and then later obtained my CDL license to help drive their tour bus. I ended up driving until 1998 when I came off the road and started leasing buses for the company I drove for. In 2002, my business partner Jim Borelli and I decided to open our own business and the rest is history! My wife Rhonda and I have a son, Dallas, who also works with me now. We are also proud grandparents of our 12 year old granddaughter Lizzy!

How do you give back to the community?
Our company is a big supporter of the schools in Gallatin. We are proud of the Pedal Park at The Miracle Park that we sponsor and we support our local non-profits that give back to our community. We are proud to be a part of this community!

What are some of your hobbies or interests outside of your professional life?
I still enjoy singing and writing music and spending time with friends and family. I love to travel, I’m a big foodie and I’m always posting food pictures under #eatinwitheric.

Who has had a significant influence or been a role model in your life?
My parents taught me work ethic from an early age. I’ve had people who taught me about the music business, Tim Dillman who taught me about the bus business along with my business partner, Jim Borelli, who makes my part easy. My Wife Rhonda has supported me in all the CRAZY things I’ve tried!

Businesses Featured in this Article

Related Businesses

Related Articles