SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - By now, most everyone is familiar with the beginnings of Paula Deen's rise to fame.
As a single mother, Paula - with the help of her two young sons - started a bag lunch business in the summer of 1989. She fundamentally ran that business out of the trunk of her car.
But there's another story you may not be a familiar with. About a year before Paula Deen started her empire, another single mom with an idea, a dream and a car with a trunk started her business.
Last week Diana Morrison celebrated the 30th anniversary of her business "Ad Specialty". While Paula's focus for the past three decades has been on building her brand, Diana's focus has been on building the brand of others, one logo'd chachki at a time.
The secrets to Diana's success is her desire to see others succeed. It's a philosophy that's easier said than done, but one she's perfected to the benefit of countless others.
But that's only half the story. As Diana's business grew, so did her involvement in our community. She was just the third woman ever named to be Chair of the Chamber of Commerce. Her involvement and marketing expertise has been invaluable to the United Way. And I challenge anyone to find an organization or business in this area that Diana hasn't touched in one way or another.
Consider this: small businesses, and more to the point, small business owners are the heart and soul of any local economy.
As we consumers make our buying decision, we must understand that when we buy local, our dollars go much further than just on the items we're buying. As Diana Morrison has shown us for the past 30 years, we're also investing in our community. So, cheers to 30 years for Diana, and here's to another 30 more.