Everybody loves winners, especially when they’re entrepreneurs who’ve earned their wins through hard work and perseverance.
More than 650 people gathered at the Naples Grande Beach Resort on Oct. 26 to celebrate the induction of Kathy Bigham and Garrett Richter into the Junior Achievement Business Hall of Fame. Junior Achievement teaches the values of free enterprise to school-age children, so it’s vitally important that it celebrate people such as Bigham and Richter to set an example for young people.
Bigham started selling jewelry out of a briefcase and worked as a truck dispatcher to pay for her college education. She founded Bigham Jewelers in Naples in 1995, building it into one of the most successful jewelers in the region.
Richter started his career as a janitor at Mellon Bank and served with the 75th Ranger Company in Vietnam before becoming one of the most successful bankers in Florida. Elected a state senator, Richter is currently president of First Florida Integrity Bank and holding company TGR Financial.
In receiving their awards, Bigham and Richter shared some of the wisdom they’ve gained from their experiences:
“Setback is an opportunity” — Kathy Bigham
“Anything is possible if you surround yourself with the right team and people” — Kathy Bigham
“Make it happen” — Kathy Bigham
“The reality of entrepreneurship is that it’s a struggle” — Kathy Bigham
“You don’t dress for the job you have. You dress for the job you want” — Garrett Richter
“You have to rank your priorities” — Garrett Richter
“Learn, earn and return,” — Garrett Richter
“The only way to get a good reputation is to earn it” — Garrett Richter