The Stories of the Upstate ™ #335: (Ariel Turner) "As a teen, I wanted to be in the CIA."

Greenville restaurant and commercial real estate development reporter, Ariel Turner, delivers our 335th story.

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"Everything in this business is about relationships, " Ariel Turner told us.  The restaurant and commercial real estate development reporter for the Greenville Journal went on to say, "I have to make people trust me."  Ariel explained that people think she must always be eating, but the Bob Jones University graduate said her job is more about correspondence, tracking down resources and loads of meetings.  

                                                                            To learn more, click here.

The Stories of the Upstate™ #291: (Patrick Michaels) "I thought I was going to be a dock worker when I grew up."

The President and CEO of Goodwill Industries of Upstate/Midlands South Carolina, Patrick Michaels shares our 291st story.

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So you donate some old clothes, a piece of furniture or some dishes to Goodwill and feel good about it, but do you really understand what your donation means to folks in your community?  You might think that you are helping folks who are struggling financially acquire much needed items at a price they can afford and you are, but your donations do much more than that.  According to Patrick Michaels, President and CEO of Goodwill Industries of Upstate/Midlands South Carolina, your donations help them accomplish their real mission: providing employment and training leading to job placement for people who have a barrier to employment.  Goodwill provides job training, job placement and workforce development for folks who struggle to be gainfully employees: people with criminal backgrounds, the long term unemployed, those with few skills; veterans, elderly and those seeking better jobs.  Last year alone, Goodwill placed 11,786 people into employment and your donations made that possible.

                                                         To learn more about Goodwill, click here.

The Stories of the Upstate™ #284: (Elizabeth LaFleur) "Reading was my thing as a kid; reading multiple books at the same time."

            Story #284 comes from Greenville News reporter and column writer, Elizabeth LaFleur.

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A television news producer seeking a job in Public Relations becoming a newspaper reporter and column writer might seem unusual, but that's Elizabeth LaFleur's story.  We really shouldn't be surprised that Elizabeth's a writer.  She was a voracious reader growing up; reading multiple books at the same time.  She read so much that her teachers often expressed concern that she was reading too much.  Imagine that.  Elizabeth enjoys her work as a reporter for the Greenville News and she loves her column, Ask LaFleur, where people ask her questions on almost any topic and she gets to have fun finding the correct answers.

                                 To check out Elizabeth LaFleur's work at the Greenville News, click here 
                                                                     and follow her on Facebook.

The Stories of the Upstate™ #258: (Wendy Watkins) "I once bought a bacon costume for Halloween."

                     Our 258th story comes from Wendy Watkins, owner of Upstate Nutrition and Plate 108

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Is it possible to have fun doing your job and make a difference in people's lives at the same time?  For Wendy Watkins, the answer is a resounding yes!  Wendy's a registered nutritionist, a person who provides evidence based information regarding nutrition and healthy living. As the owner of Upstate Nutrition, Wendy provides registered dietitians to hospitals, nursing homes, etc, who help individuals from children to geriatrics with healthy living and dietary needs.  The fun kicks in as owner of Greer's Plate 108 where Wendy teaches people how to cook and eat healthy.  She says that eating and cooking are social things, so using cooking classes to help people lead healthy lives is a natural and fun part of her job. 

                                                     To learn more about Upstate Nutrition, click here
                                                            o learn more about Plate 108, click here.

The Stories of the Upstate™ #255" (Perry J. Williams) "I’m a fanatic about beets and love to cook them in multiple different ways."

Our 255th story, a GSA Business Report Q&A, comes from the Chairman of Greer Commission
  of Public Works, Perry J. Williams.

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When we flip on the bedroom light, turn on the kitchen faucet, start the furnace or flush the toilet, we aren't thinking about water pipes, gas lines or waste water treatment, but that's exactly what Perry J. Williams concerns himself with daily as Chairman of Greer Commission of Public Works.  Originally chartered in 1913, Greer Commission of Public Works provides electricity, gas, water and waste water treatment for approx. 80,000 people.  Profit is not what drives the Greer Commission of Public Works.  Perry says that providing reliable and fiscally sound utilities is what drives him and the Commission.  So the next time you flip a switch or turn a faucet in the Greer area, you can rest assured that the power and the water will be there, thanks to Greer Commission of Public Works and it's Chairman, Perry J. Williams.

                                       To learn more about Greer Commission of Public Works, click here
                                                            and follow Perry J. Williams on Facebook.

The Stories of the Upstate™ #219: (Monroe Free) "My wife and I are total nerds; we rock at Trivial Pursuit."

Our 219th story, a GSA Business Report Q & A, comes from President and CEO of Habitat for Humanity of Greenville, Monroe Free.

In a recent survey, Greenville discovered that the city has a 2.500 unit shortage for affordable housing, making what Habitat for Humanity Greenville does a blessing.  President and CEO of Habitat for Humanity Greenville, Monroe Free explains how Habitat for Humanity combines being contractors, developers, mortgage holders and retailers to give low income families the means to overcome the obstacles of poverty through affordable housing.  Working with families who invest in their own future with "sweat equity," Habitat for Humanity helps make healthier and better lives for those in need.  

                                   To learn more about Habitat for Humanities Greenville, click here.