Mike and Sharon’s journey to start and grow Double Time Express exemplifies the idea of American persistence and grit. Mike grew up with his mother on a farm with dreams of making a living working the land. That all changed when his mother died, sending him to the city to live with his father, far away from the agricultural community that was all he knew.
At 18, Mike joined the Marines, which is where he first started driving trucks. After being discharged, he went to work as a truck driver for a domestic freight company, which is where he stayed for the next 14 years until the business shut down. Mike saw this as an opportunity rather than a setback, buying up his former employer’s old equipment and using his connections from years of working in the trucking industry as a cross-country deliverer to provide a ready client base.
Sharon, Mike’s wife of 29 years, joined him in running the business. She eventually learned to drive a rig, too, accompanying Mike on long hauls until they started fostering kids.
Running a business is not all roses and sunshine, as Mike and Sharon will tell you. After overcoming skyrocketing fuel prices, cumbersome State regulations, a sour economy and exploding engines, Mike and Sharon were forced to lose their home in order to keep their business, following bankruptcy proceedings caused by a large client’s default.
Once again, Mike and Sharon persevered, and now their business is on a firmer footing than ever due to the growth of a loyal client, Stone Brewing. They will use their Kiva loan to buy a trailer to allow them to meet the demands for their services. With this last bit of investment, Double Time Express is poised to become a sustainable business that Mike and Sharon can pass on to their kids.