The organization Enitiative, located here in the Syracuse area, is starting a monthly speaker series focused on business entrepreneurs who have made a success of themselves in our area. The first presentation will be April 23rd at 5PM at the Syracuse Technology Garden, and the guest speaker is none other than Art Zimmer, one of my favorite folks around here. A link to the notice for the presentation is here; it's a Word document.

Art Zimmer is one of the first people I met at the Syracuse Chamber of Commerce. He's the kind of guy you're just drawn to, or at least I was drawn to, because he was the first, and still only person, I've ever met who wears an ascot. He always dresses very colorfully also, which helps him stand out. Talk about businesses; this guy seems like he's done them all. The main two I know about now are his Zimmer Motor Cars, custom made cars for high dollars that he only makes after the cars have been paid for (the car he made for Shaquille O'Neal was outstanding), and he's the owner of the Syracuse New Times, known as one of the top alternative newspapers in the country.

I remember him telling me a story on how he got money to start all his different ventures. He said he decided he wanted to be an entrepreneur but didn't have any cash, so he set up a three year plan of working, period. For three years he worked three jobs, some weekends, and put almost all the money away except what he needed to pay the few bills he had. He didn't spend money on anything else. After three years, he bought his first business, something he knew nothing about, and has never stopped.

This guy is fascinating; I plan on attending, and if you're in the area, you should also. Below is a picture of one of his cars, with the man himself: