SALISBURY GENTLEMAN GEORGE TAYLOR '80 SHARES HIS STORY WITH THE SALISBURY COMMUNITY
I grew up in Richmond Virginia and went to a local private school. At the time, Richmond was a “small” city and my world was made up of a relatively small group of people who I had known since kindergarten. I was rebellious, unchallenged and had become bored with school and life in general.
I came to Salisbury in my junior year looking for a place that was academically challenging/interesting, had a geographically diverse student base, and would provide a structure that would prepare me for the independence that would come with college. And Salisbury delivered.
When I arrived on campus, I was incredibly fortunate to have roomed with two great guys—Steve Hart and Andy Rutledge. These guys had already been at school for a couple of years and were awesome at catching me up to speed quickly. Everything from campus protocol to extracurricular opportunities in the woods.
My two years at Salisbury were two of the most influential years of my life. So many teachers poured into me and helped shape and grow my independent entrepreneurial nature which eventually lead to my career in startup companies (mostly software).
I’ve spent the past 35 years leading startups and have been fortunate to have been part of companies that changed the world just a bit. Today I’m part of National Speed and TRU Colors. The former is scaling speed shops across the country (I’ve had a bad car habit for decades) and is working to elevate and standardize the automotive performance industry. You can check out National Speed here: www.NationalSpeedInc.com.
TRU Colors is different than my other startups. Like the others, it’s an investor-backed for-profit venture, but unlike the others it’s an Impact Venture. TRU Colors is a large for-profit brewery I founded with rival gang leaders (think Bloods, Crips, GD, etc.). In addition to producing great beer, the business has a tightly integrated social mission to stop gang violence and unite communities across America.
TRU Colors is a financially sustainable solution to one of the country’s most challenging social problems. The Company has spent 2-years in “R&D” developing its unique social mission platform, completing market studies, and developing corporate, media and gang partnerships that will help ensure it quickly grows to a national brand. TRU Colors is currently completing construction of its 64,000 square foot facility and will launch beer into North Carolina and Virginia in March of 2021.
You can learn about TRU Colors story here: www.TruStory.Life
A lot has happened in my life since graduation, but there’s no question Salisbury played an important role in forming the foundation for my entrepreneurial career. In particular, Salisbury taught me independence and to think big, to take risks and not be afraid to fail, and the importance of passion and a solid work ethic. For that and much more, I will always be grateful.