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Wednesday, Oct. 15, 2008

Let It Ride

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When Glenda Carter was growing up barefoot in a small Mississippi Delta town, she and her friends had a favorite expression: “Let it ride.” “It meant, ‘Let it go, move on,’” Carter says. “If someone hurt themselves playing, the other kids would say, ‘Let it ride’—shake it off and move on.”

After graduating from high school, Carter moved on. She eventually settled in Milwaukee and started a small business, Let It Ride Transport Inc. In four years, Carter has grown her business from one passenger van to three, and recently added a school bus.

Carter began her business while working for Wings Academy, a charter school with a large special-needs population. She saw that the school contracted for student transportation. “I thought this might be a good business to be involved in. There certainly was a need out there,” she says.

She paid cash for her first van, a Ford Windstar, with money she had been saving for years. “It was my life savings,” she says. “I’ve always been a saver. Even when I was a kid, I remember saving the change that I earned for doing chores. If somebody bought me candy, I’d save it for later when I could sell it to the other children.”

Carter’s plans call for securing a city contract, adding more vehicles and drivers, and offering health benefits to her employees, of which she currently has two. “It’s not easy working for yourself, but I wouldn’t have it any other way,” she says.


Definition of the Week
Debt Forgiveness Canceling or rescheduling a borrower’s debts to lessen the pain of the debt burden. Debt forgiveness is increasingly viewed as the best way to relieve the financial problems facing poorer countries. (Source: Economist.com.)

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