It truly is crazy how many stories you’ll hear about the connections between people in the
Maple Street family, and Brandon’s Maple Street story is just one more.
I am a Jacksonville native, and my wife Betsy were living in Nashville, Tennessee and had come home to visit family, and all his family could talk about was this new biscuit restaurant in Murray Hill. So, being the ‘foodies’ that we are, we knew we had to try what everyone was raving about.
From the moment we walked into the Murray Hill community store, we fell in love. The food, the coffee, the atmosphere; none of it disappointed. We loved it so much we came back the next day, and the day after that. Maple Street was quickly a MUST of every trip home and even led to some day trips to Chattanooga, just for Maple Street.
Like I said, our story is a story of connection and during one of their first visits to Maple Street, I recognized a familiar face, that of Michael Burden. We had worked together for a few years before Michael became a part of the Maple Street family. As they were catching up, Michael told Brandon about the amazing culture and mission of Maple Street, how different it really was working for Mr. Moore and Maple Street, and how much he loved working there. Michael’s words stuck with me a long time, over 2 years to be exact.
By early 2017, I had been working in the restaurant industry for nearly 8 years, and while I loved where I worked and who I worked for, I knew I wanted to be a part of a somewhere that was more than just another business. I had a passion for serving others and developing leaders and where he was working just was not focused on those things anymore. I was searching for something different, something more. While on a trip home for my sister’s wedding, sitting in the Murray Hill Community store, the thought crossed my mind that maybe Maple Street was what he had been looking for all along.
I knew Michael had been running a community store in Tallahassee, Florida and gave him a call a few days later. Michael’s words still stuck with me from our conversation from 2 years prior, and he had to know what it was really like. So after a long conversation with Michael about my current job, the mission of Maple Street, and the life of a Community Leader, Michael helped me in beginning the process of becoming a Community Leader.
As part of the process, I had to work a few days in a restaurant, trying it out. From day one I had already made up his mind, I wanted to be a part of the Maple Street Family. What truly sealed the deal for me was the mission and environment of Maple Street. Helping people, serving others, and being a part of the community were some of the exact things my wife and I were looking for in life.As life sometimes goes, my Maple Street journey did not go exactly has he expected. When I began the process of becoming a Community Leader it was with the intention of going to a different city, but when we were asked if we would be willing to move to Johnson City, Tennessee, we knew we could not say no. Betsy and I took the evening to talk, think, and pray over our decision before saying yes, and both of us will tell you it was one of the best and easiest decisions we ever made together.
So shortly after agreeing to move, us two packed up everything we owned and headed for East Tennessee. In a short time after moving from Nashville to Johnson City, we fell in love with the little town and it’s tight knit community.We are so excited to begin this new chapter in life, and so honored to serve such an amazing community. We wouldn’t have it any other way. Johnson City is such a perfect fit for Maple Street and we can’t wait to see how this community will continue to change and grow.
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