Family: My parents are Melanie and Carey
Howell. I have one sister, Polly, who is married to Buck Robinson. I have a nephew named Hudson Robinson.
Years in Golden Isles: I have lived in McIntosh County my entire life.
Occupation: Founder of the online store, WillPower Ties.
Tell us about how WillPower Ties got started: Two years ago, my dad read an article about the founder of John’s Crazy Socks, who has Down syndrome. That article planted the seed that one day, my dad and I could work together. Then, last May, I graduated from high school. My doctor reminded my parents that I needed more than a job; I needed “a purpose.” In the car, on the way home from that appointment, we decided to open an online store to sell ties.
Where do you want to see WillPower Ties in the future? My mom’s goal is to grow WillPower Ties to the point that we could hire people with other disabilities, but she says to hire people with “varying abilities.” My goal is to increase what we can donate to AMBUCS. Right now, we give 5 percent of sales to AMBUCS, but as we grow, I want to increase that percentage. AMBUCS provides adaptive bikes to people with physical challenges.
How has your family helped your business? My whole family helps WillPower Ties. My mom and sister work on the computer side of the business. Dad and I pull all of the orders and take all of the packages to the post office together. My dad is also teaching me to print the packing slips. All of the thank you cards I sign all by myself. I’m good at it.
Describe your perfect Saturday: I love to get up early. I meet my grandparents every Saturday for lunch. A perfect Saturday ends with the announcer saying, “Touchdown Georgia” on my TV.
Favorite part of the Golden Isles: I love the pier! I love looking in everyone’s bucket to see what fish they have been catching.
What is your favorite tie, and why? Today, my favorite is the tie called “Off the Hook.” It has fishing hooks on it.
A local you admire: Marion Moore – he is my Papa. He laughs all the time, and we always have fun together.