Weblog: Highschool drop-out rises to CEO of Austin-based firm
AUSTIN (KXAN) – JeVon McCormick doesn’t know a lot about his household’s historical past, however he’s writing his personal story.
“I can’t change If my dad was a pimp and drug supplier, can’t change my mother’s an orphan, can’t change I used to be sexually abused,” McCormick mentioned. “However I can change the subsequent day, the week, month and yr. So, I began specializing in what can I alter?”
JeVon says he was sexually abused at a younger age by one among his father’s prostitutes. He understands he was victimized however refused to remain in a sufferer mentality.
“Your life is a alternative. Once you get up within the morning, the primary alternative you’re going to make is do I get immediately off the bed? Do I hit snooze? For me, it comes down to 2 selections. I select to be optimistic,” JeVon defined.
That kind of considering helped him discover mild throughout these darkish instances in his life, together with dropping out of highschool and being out and in of the juvenile jail system.
JeVon obtained his GED, and whereas he didn’t go to varsity, right this moment he’s the CEO of Scribe, a publishing firm based mostly in Austin.
He’s again within the juvenile jail system, however this time as a mentor with the Truman Midway Home on the Texas Juvenile Justice Division. The previous dropout talks to high-risk youth who’re in the identical scenario he lived by. McCormick tells them in regards to the fourth possibility.
“Rising up for me, there have been three choices: rapper, athlete, drug supplier, and fact be informed, I sucked in any respect three,” he mentioned. “Nobody informed us in regards to the fourth possibility, nobody informed me about entrepreneurship. I imply, when you would have mentioned entrepreneurship to me at 15 years previous, I believed you had been talking Spanish.”
When Jevon was the CEO of Headspring, a software program firm, he introduced children from a midway home to go to. It was the primary time they stepped in an workplace setting, even the elevators and clear flooring left the youngsters speechless — it modified their life.
“They noticed code on the whiteboards. They noticed the double displays, a desk laptop computer, simply issues they hadn’t seen earlier than,” he mentioned.
“One child took a liking to it. And we gave him Jimmy Bogart e-book. And this child ended up getting his highschool diploma within the juvenile system. He ended up going to group school, he ended up getting accepted to a four-year school. He obtained a level in laptop science. This child now makes about $150,000 a yr. And he’s obtained $50,000 saved in his 401(ok) as a result of he obtained to see what was doable,” McCormick mentioned with an enormous grin and proud voice. “How do you aspire to be one thing once you don’t even know what exists?”
JeVon’s inspiration sits proper behind him at his workplace desk. He retains a jar of peanut butter and jelly on the bookshelf subsequent to his desk. It’s a reminder of his youth when his household didn’t have sufficient to purchase it. Proper subsequent to it’s a framed $10 receipt, a reminder of the quantity his mother might pay towards their $145 month-to-month lease.
He shared these tales in a e-book that he says was by no means alleged to be revealed.
“I wished my youngsters to have a legacy piece. I’ve no legacy, no background. It was essential for me that my youngsters knew how I obtained right here,” he mentioned. “My dad was a black pimp and drug supplier within the Nineteen Seventies, he fathered 23 youngsters. My mother is white, she was an orphan raised in an orphanage.”
That memoir, “I Received There,” revealed how his upbringing made it laborious to develop relationships with ladies. It wasn’t till his late 30’s when he realized he wanted a change.
“I regarded within the mirror and needed to admit out loud, ‘Wow, you’re rather a lot like your dad, you similar to him.’” After which the ‘a-ha second’ kicked in. “I keep in mind saying to myself: Okay, you taught your self the best way to become profitable. You’ve taught your self the best way to navigate the enterprise world. However you’ve by no means taken the time to show your self the best way to have a relationship.”
He’s been married for 10 years now and has 4 youngsters. JeVon calls it his biggest accomplishment in life.
These robust life classes made JeVon who he’s right this moment. He calls the ups and downs, errors and classes “progress alternatives and inspiration.”
“I made a dedication to myself years in the past that I used to be by no means going to cease making an attempt, he mentioned. “You solely fail when you cease making an attempt.”
Jose Torres is a morning information producer with KXAN. His weblog will deliver tales of hope and willpower from others who’ve fought by their very own well being struggles and life challenges. He appears ahead to sharing these conversations in future blogs.