(photos taken by Travis Levius)
We’ve all heard triumphant “rags-to -riches” success stories in our lifetime- but have we witnessed a riches-to-rags story…and still consider it a triumph?
It may be difficult to believe, but author and Starbucks barista Michael Gates Gill challenges millions of people about what a great, inspiring life looks like. Best-seller “How Starbucks Saved My Life” is an autobiography by Gill who was raised in the highest social circles on Earth- meeting Jackie Onassis, Queen Elizabeth, and Ernest Hemingway, going to Yale, and landing a six-figure ad agency job immediately after graduation. He was living the high life in New York City and made no apologies for it…then situations rocked his entire life.
He was fired from his prestigious job because of his older age, went through a divorce due to his adultery, and ran his own consulting company only to see it crash and burn. This “born rich” man became unemployed for 10 years, and during this time discovered he had a brain tumor.
Through desperation he sought out an open position at Starbucks Coffee near Harlem, serving customers, cleaning bathrooms, and handling the register- not exactly the glamorous life he’s experienced since birth. Continue reading