What These Men Learned

What These Men Learned


As we reflect on 100 editions, we thought we’d check in with a few of the men we’ve highlighted along the way. From winning the U.S. Open to receiving the James Beard Award for the best chef in the Southeast – these men and their stories have grown and progressed since we first featured them. We asked them what they’ve learned in the process.


Sid Mashburn
Initially featured in Edition No. 2
“As I have gotten older, I realize how little I really know. I’ve learned that the most gratifying things are the easiest ones to forget or take for granted: working hard, being kind and taking care of people. It really is blocking and tackling – our customer wins (and we win) when we take care of the simplest, humblest, most-routine tasks.”

Jonathan Baker – Monday Night Brewing
Initially featured in Edition No. 15
“Putting everything I have into creating a great beer business (my time, my money, my energy, my liver) is a tiring and unsustainable endeavor. In our first year in business, I’ve had to teach myself – or rather, be taught by those around me – how to keep things in perspective. If I don’t make time for my family, my friends and my faith, all of this is for nothing.”

Victor Lytvinenko – Raleigh Denim
Initially featured in Edition No. 38
“I’ve learned that’s it’s a good idea to look for the humor in tough situations. I’m not always very good at finding it – hell, it’s not always there – but it’s never a bad goal to be positive and keep things in perspective.”

Matt Eddmenson – Imogene + Willie
Initially featured in Edition No. 50
“Many times, my day generally has no beginning and no end. It takes a lot to just try to turn off work so that you can turn on your life. When my wife Carrie and I started imogene + willie, we had such a clear vision of our brand that any outside influence was usually ignored. Now we have a team that consists of 18 people, and with any group, there are a lot of opinions. The most invaluable lesson that I have learned in the last year is to trust and lean on our amazing team. At the end of those long days, it’s really nice to know that 17 other people are all driving in the same direction.”

Hugh Acheson
Initially featured in Edition No. 51
“Over the last two years I have learned that Atlanta is immersed in an important era for great restaurants. It’s a time of authenticity, of finding our true food culture, of celebrating what we have in a wonderfully diverse city. Southern food is such a hot commodity right now, and I feel blessed to be involved with continuing to define what it means to me.”

Otis James
Initially featured in Edition No. 56
“Over time your passions and ideals can change, sometimes drastically. When this happens, it’s always best to embrace and adapt to the new direction rather than trying to force yourself back into an old mindset. Integrity comes from following your heart, not history.”

Phillip Nappi – Peter Nappi
Initially featured in Edition No. 70
“Early in life I noticed the people I admired and aspired to be like shared certain principles. I took the time to define these principles and pledged to do my best to live by them. Every day is as new and unpredictable as the last, often carrying many different challenges and demands. It is during these challenging moments where I have learned to constantly remind myself of those principles forged long ago, and vowing never to lose sight of or become complacent in them.”

Jim Chasteen – American Spirit Whiskey
Initially featured in Edition No. 71
“Those of us who grew up in the South have always been proud of our way of life, but as our company has grown over the past year it is exciting to discover that the rest of the country is watching what’s happening here. From food and white whiskey to music and fashion, Southern culture is influencing trends. I’ve learned to have a greater appreciation for not just Southern tradition, but Southern innovation.”

Emil Congdon – Emil Erwin
Initially featured in Edition No. 73
“Over the past year, with the addition of our third child, I have continued to learn that one must make a concerted effort to prioritize one’s family. It’s easy to get caught up in the momentum of work and the minutiae of the scene. You can get pulled in so many directions with matters that feel like they will further your success. These could take up every second of your day, but you have to realize that reading that extra story to your kids at bedtime or taking time for your wife is far more important than any interview or party, etc.”

Webb Simpson
Initially featured in Edition No. 74
“I have experienced great worldly success this past year but having a family and raising two children has been far more fulfilling and joyful than playing good golf.  So I’ve learned that there’s nothing more important than having the right priorities and keeping it all in the proper perspective.”

Dolan Geiman
Initially featured in Edition No. 75
“Here’s something I’ve learned in the art world: A little Southern hospitality goes a long way, especially now that I live in Chicago. I was always raised to open doors for women and help older ladies carry their groceries, and while most of my peers think those behaviors are reserved for Boy Scouts, I believe that being nice never goes out of style. So, set a good example and be the nice guy: you may finish last, but you’ll be in good company.”

Chancellor Warhol
Initially featured in Edition No. 92
“This year has been full of monumental experiences and a great transition for me. I learned to appreciate hard work and the paths and doors that open from it. Success and heart defines us. Success isn’t always money, but the value gained from the journey.”

GET YOUR Bearings Logo
A bi-weekly guide featuring
enriching stories and
distinct products