The act of service, is a selfless commitment given to others. Many have this engrained in them early on and others learn it over time. It could happen as a possible fork in the road that may lead a person to a path in life dedicated to help. A second chance one can call it but most importantly what it is, is a chance of strength to make decisions that not only impact yourself but may inspire others along the way.
Local Marine veteran and owner of Ace Handyman Services Luis Guerrero knows this service road, no pun intended, very well. Growing up in a small town in Texas and not having the latest and greatest, he still appreciated what he did have and that was being surrounded by loving and hardworking individuals dedicated to each other. When discussing family a smile spread across his face, while thinking back at fond memories going with his father to work, which happened to be an Ace Hardware and seeing the pride he had in his craft and appreciation for those he worked with.
Even with that environment of support, Luis’s teenage years became a cloud of defiance and trouble making. Too many close calls finally led to an eye-opening conversation with an older family friend that gave a fatherly tough love speech and made him realize the path he was on was headed to nowhere at high velocity. Deciding to go big Luis joined the Marines for what became a 12-year career. “Looking back, I matured a lot, built bonds that to this day still exist and defined myself” states Luis. The unruly kid, gained experiences that humbled him greatly and taught what service, honor, respect, loyalty, and strength truly meant and also not to take life for granted.
Vowing to give back and continue to serve this country in a different form he dove into entrepreneurship opening his first Ace Handyman Services Office in 2021 to honor his father and nail his purpose to “be there for my community like mine was for me.” Providing a career path for fellow veterans and a diverse group of multi-talented craftsmen is rewarding and beyond words for the veteran when he sees how families and communities are positively affected by the opportunity.
Opening his new Pearland location this year the need of a dedicated team development manager arose. Growing up he saw a business driven to cultivate a culture of diversity and personal growth and that tradition needed to be kept alive. When meeting Suzan Nguyen for the position he believed her focus aligned with his business value.
At 22 years of age Suzan Nguyen had a car accident which left her with an amputated arm above the elbow. A moment which left her bitter and faced with many frustrations like having to retrain herself to use her nondominant arm to do many of life’s simple tasks and more. “Life wasn’t easy one bit.” In the midst of all this, Suzan was not taking care of herself but support poured in from her community of family, friends, and previous co-workers. Her rebellious, immature nature, and resentment led to a moment of emotional vulnerability and at that metaphorical fork in the road. Dedication and supportive advice helped her decide the path and to transform appreciating life in a whole new way.
She went back to the books taking courses in leadership development and public speaking. Personal growth that she developed for the ability to it pay forward and live by the motto, “be better not bitter.” Her dedication and empathetic nature to help others and impact many lives affected by roadblocks in their lives has led to multiple public speaking engagements such as TEDx. She founded the Be Better Group, became an author, and is the first Mrs. Universal Empire, an international organization which awards women who have faced hardships with bravery and resilience.
Although the duo took different paths in life, they both learned their reasons for living and serving compassionately. They are cementing a message about the value of trust, respect, and service excellence. Work sites and neighborhoods improve when, “businesses thrive because they are comprised of our coworkers and clients who are our neighbors and friends and all treated with commitment and care and respected as more than just a number.” Willingness to cultivate more community involvement past the business is the vision of success for Luis and Suzan as well as providing quality selfless service to keep a town moving forward.