Step into Rosie’s World: Love, Family and Office SuppliesMadison - The Heartland That Holds My Heart
That saying holds more truth for me than most people can imagine. For me, that home is Madison, WI. I was born and raised right here in this beautiful state of Wisconsin, and I even chose my own backyard to attend college at UW-Madison. After earning my undergraduate in 1987, my intentions were set on attending law school. As luck would have it, I landed a job that I loved at Rayovac (now Spectrum Brands) in customer service – talking and talking and talking to businesses all day long. The good thing about this was the job was right here in Madison. What could be better? Eventually, my career took me outside of this wonderful city. But something in my heart, whether it was the desire to be closer to my family or the insatiable urge for some great cheese, our glorious fall, Schoep’s ice cream, and a farmer’s market that’s second to none, had Madison calling me home.
New Beginnings Come from Some Other Beginning’s End
Simply put, I love to work. Always have. And my love to talk paid off. To diversify, Rayovac started a new Office Products division – a channel focused on office products resellers — just like EZ Office Products is today. I stayed with Rayovac for 7 years. After leaving Rayovac, I continued my career in the Office Products channel by going to work with industry wholesaler, United Stationers (now Essendant). Bidding farewell to MadTown, I headed for warmer weather screaming, “Hello Dallas!” While I didn’t know it then, my stint in Texas would be rather short (two years). An industry acquisition relocated my role to the east coast and my new home would soon be the “City of Brotherly Love” — Philadelphia. This is where it gets interesting, because brotherly love was not the only love I found on the East Coast. Hence, a new beginning blossomed right before my eyes.
Love is a Song That Never Ends
“Everything happens for a reason,” right? During a presentation at a business function in East Orange, NJ, I met Gary Molz. Once again, Lady Luck was whispering, though I wasn’t listening. Randomly, Gary and I sat next to one another during lunch and I didn’t talk with him for two years after that. Fast forward to a phone call in my office. It was Gary, ever so sweetly asking me to lunch. “So sorry,” I said politely and in my best business manner, “I don’t date customers.” However, a business lunch was agreed upon. Fast forward another two years and I found myself at the altar saying, “I do.”
There’s No Place Like Home
“If I ever go looking for my heart's desire again,” (better opportunities, taller ladders, brighter lights), “I won't look any further than my own backyard” because if it isn't here, it isn’t anywhere. And trust me there is nowhere in the world that has better cheese and ice cream than Wisconsin. Now you all know what to get me for my birthday! However, like so many, I had to find it out for myself. There was never a doubt that I would come back, it was just a matter of when and how. So Gary & I packed up, headed home, and started our own company – EZ Office Products.
Be the Change You Wish to See in the World
With Madison as my home, helping our local community is something Gary and I share a great passion. We are blessed to be part of so many outstanding, committed non-profit and charitable organizations. There are so many to name, and we like to support as many as we can. We are also very involved in the Buy Local and Sustainable movement, having been members and supporters of Dane Buy Local and Sustain Dane for many years.
I’ve learned many things over the years, but one thing holds true: You can only be as great as the community around you. That holds true from both the professional and personal sides of life. Find your community. Support it and it will support you. It’s a beautiful thing to watch everything in it grow and know you were a part of it.
I hoped you enjoyed learning a little more about me. Maybe one day I can learn a little bit more about you too. Until then, I hope you come back and delve into Rosie’s World again!