Average students take heart. If Dan English could do it, so can you.
Dan pulled C’s at Coeur d’Alene High School in the late 1960s. He didn’t know what he wanted to do after graduation so he worked at a gas station for awhile.
Now, Dan is 43, has a master’s degree in counseling psychology, serves on Coeur d’Alene’s City Council and runs a non-profit credit counseling service. He has even served on the Coeur d’Alene School Board.
“That surprised some of my old teachers,” he says, laughing. “They wondered how I could be on the board when I couldn’t even write a term paper.”
Dan went to North Idaho College to please a girlfriend’s mother. He entered the law enforcement program on a whim and found he liked working with young offenders.
Momentum pushed him through college, but he had to volunteer at the sheriff’s department until a job as a juvenile detective opened. Dan quit after two years to work for Youth for Christ, where he could more directly help kids.
He returned to county work a few years later, but lost his job when money was short. By then, he had a wife and four children. His family lived on food stamps and his unemployment checks for nine months while Dan brainstormed Anchor House, a group home for troubled boys.
For 11 years, Dan ran Anchor House. He counseled angry and abused boys heading for criminal life. He scrambled for grants and state contracts. He found his calling.
Still, he left a year ago to try the mortgage business with his sister. An advertisement for a credit counselor beckoned him back into social work within nine months.
Credit Consumer Counseling demands all of Dan’s life and work experience now. He still doesn’t know where he’s going, but he knows he’ll make the best of whatever comes.
“When I was in high school, I would’ve never seen myself in this job,” he says. “I guess I had more potential than anyone thought.”
If you’ve ever been tempted to visit the Coeur d’Alene Greyhound Park, Thursday is the day to go. That day you’ll see eight real estate agents instead of dogs on the track and they’ll be chasing a picture of a house rather than a rabbit. There will be cheerleaders, too.
Sound weird? It’s all to raise money for the Kootenai County Substance Abuse Council. Fill your pockets with kibble and don’t miss post time. Call 762-2697 for details.
If you forgot about National Public Health Week last week, the Panhandle Health District still wants to see you. You don’t have to get vaccinated, although you can, while you’re there. You don’t have to get a pregnancy or AIDS test, your cholesterol screened, a breast exam or sign up for help quitting smoking or losing weight.
You don’t have to tell the nurse your health problems, (although if you do, he or she will listen and find help), or ask about home health services or senior companions for your housebound neighbor.
Just stop by and check out all the programs Panhandle Health offers. Your taxes pay for them.
Serve ‘em up
I’ve heard several people complain recently that the standard of service is slipping, that employees no longer act as if the customer is always right.
I’m loyal to several businesses in Coeur d’Alene because the employees make me feel welcome, treat me like a friend. If service is friendly, I don’t care if it’s slow.
Where have you found the best service in your area? Share those people and places with the rest of us. Boast about them to Cynthia Taggart, “Close to Home,” 608 Northwest Blvd., Suite 200, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, 83814; fax to 765-7149; or call 765-7128 and I’ll do the writing.
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