Welcome to Your Stories. I will kick off this section by telling you our story. I grew up in rural Illinois. I followed the rules, stayed out of trouble, and did everything I was supposed to do. I went to college and got a degree. I then moved away from home and got a job. My first job was in the mortgage industry. In fact I got the job a matter of months before that industry collapsed. I then got a job working with mutual funds. Well, then the market tanked and my company laid me off, even though they had enjoyed record profits. I then spent a great deal of time unemployed looking for work.
My compatriot and cofounder James grew up in the same town me. He also was raised in a two parent, middle class, blue collar working house hold in which both parents worked. His Father served in the Marine Corps from (1967-2009) which he retired highly decorated. Half of that time his Father was a member of the United States Marine Corp Reserves, while serving his country he also was a reservist county deputy and city operation manger of the small town we grew up in. His Mother was an assistant manager of a small dry cleaning business in town while holding the family together through deployments. He joined the Air Force at 18, and served for twelve years with distinction in several fronts in the War on Terror. He found work in North Carolina, but has found the security and satisfaction elusive.
We were both raised in typical middle class, Midwestern households. At home and church, in school and scouts, we were taught midwestern values and work ethic. We were also taught that those values and work ethic would allow us to do better than our parents. Yet, as we have moved into adulthood we have found that, despite our best efforts, the American Dream has proven elusive. Our upbringing has given us the ability to understand that we did not lose the American Dream, it was snatched away from us.
We started this website to tell the story of how, for younger Americans especially, the American Dream has been lost. In this section we encourage you to email us your story of how the American Dream has eluded you, and we will post it in this section.