I started in this business in 1995, more less as a hobby. Little did I know just 5 years later, this would turn into a full time career.
In 2000, as I ventured out into the “national” aspect of this business, I entered many preliminary contests in places anywhere from Louisiana to Canada. I am proud to say I met many good friends along the way such as Danny Dale and his family from Louisville, Kentucky. They are such a top-notch caliber of people and would do anything for you. I’d also like to mention The Fary’s, Todd Martin, Jason Sikes, Courtney Amador, Arik Christopher, Danny and Pat Haywood, Marc Woodward and Terry Price. Really the list could go on and on...there are too many good people to list.
My first memories of a helping hand in this business are of Jackie and Doc Franklin and Michael and Bobby Hoover. In 2001, they allowed me to participate in the Elvis Birthday Celebration and they were very encouraging. Later on that same year, I was fortunate enough to place 3rd in the Images of the King contest. I consider this my first milestone. I have been fortunate to have won many preliminaries on my journey but don’t get me wrong, I am no stranger to defeat! But, I never let that get me down..in fact, I think I must hold a record for finishing 2nd (just kidding!).
I would like to thankfully say that my journey ended this past summer. In July, I won the Canadian Grand Championship at the Collingwood Elvis Festival in the Concert Years category....Collingwood is the World’s Largest Elvis Festival. In August in Memphis (which is, of course the MECCA of Elvisness), I completed the final goal I’d set for myself, which was to win the International Images of the King Contest. To be the first person to win both major contests in the same year, was more than I could have hoped for.
Now I will start a new journey in this business and set new goals for myself, which for the most part will involve being able to put more into my shows now that the contest stage is behind me.
I’ve never done this for the money or prestige. I do this simply for the love of Elvis and to keep his memory alive. After all, I’m really just a big Elvis Fan!