Mayor Foxx made a visit to small business owner, Chris Finley of Computer Functions. Chris has a remarkable story of perseverance from homelessness to small business owner. Mayor Foxx stopped in to see how the City of Charlotte can be a better resource to small business owners. Below is a news story that WBTV ran on the Mayors visit in South End.
Local man transforms into small biz owner
CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) – It wasn’t all that long ago that Chris Finley was unemployed and homeless.
But you won’t find him on the streets of Charlotte anymore.
You’ll find him behind the counter of Computer Functions in South End.
And he doesn’t just work there.
He owns the business.
So, how does one go from being homeless to owning your own business?
“Just appreciating life,” Finley says. “Going after something that maybe you always wanted or something you didn’t think you could do.”
Finley says he wouldn’t have gotten anywhere if he hadn’t mustered that spirit, but he needed some outside help too.
So he turned to the city’s employment resources.
Today, Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx says those programs are working, to a degree.
“Overall, yes, in the sense that we are at a lower level of unemployment this year than we were two years ago for sure,” Foxx says. “But one of the things I think we can do to strengthen our ability to get people hired is to help promote small businesses more.”
Which is why the mayor toured Computer Functions today. He also wanted to ask Finley how the city can improve its job-creation programs.
Finley said entrepreneurs need clear access to grants the city has set aside for them, and Charlotte’s job creation web sites need to be easier to navigate.
Foxx said he’ll take the suggestions to city council.