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12-21-04 Oconee Native, Joe McCart, Has Come A Long Way Since Farmington

Joe used to go ‘coon hunting’ (raccoons) at Eastville with Harry and Ronnie Thomas and others.  Like most of us he did farm labor and operated farm machinery as a teenager in Oconee County.

AVOC

 

December 20, 2004

 

Joe McCart Started from Meager Beginnings and Became Very Successful

 

By Wendell Dawson, Editor, AVOC, Inc.

 

Like many of us farm boys of the 1940’s and 50’s in Oconee County, Joe McCart had a modest existence growing up.   He was in the Class of 1959 and came through the Oconee County High School system with me and my OCHS 1958 Classmates.  In fact, he married one of us, Nancy Middlebrooks of Farmington.

 

Joe used to go ‘coon hunting’ (raccoons) at Eastville with Harry and Ronnie Thomas and others.  Like most of us he did farm labor and operated farm machinery as a teenager in Oconee County.

 

Years later, and after attaining tremendous business success, I heard Joe credit the late Jeff Cain, OCHS Vo-Ag Teacher for our generation, for changing his life.   Apparently, Joe was struggling with High School issues.  He says that Jeff Cain came to a Murrow Brothers field where he was operating a tractor one hot day.  Mr. Cain asked Joe if he wanted to do that for the rest of his life.  He told Joe that he could go back to school and do better.  Joe credits that visit and advice with turning his life around.

 

When we were finishing High School in the late 50’s, many of us were planning to attend the University of Georgia and other colleges.  I do not remember Joe being one of the college- bound students.  He was personable and blessed with tremendous native intelligence.  He and a friend, Alton Burger, also of Farmington, “went to Atlanta’ and got in the ‘insurance business’.  If I remember correctly, they started with a modest debit route.

 

Joe’s personality, character, intelligence and willingness to work carried him a long way in the Insurance Business. He has one of the largest multi-line insurance broker operations in the state.  At the same time, he has continued to insure many local Farmington friends who helped get him started.  Remembering his friends and origins is much of the secret of Joe’s success.

 

We kept up with Joe over the years, at Class Reunions and many Funerals.  His business grew and his three children became successful.  He and Nancy, who became an R N, made sure all of their children went to college and obtained professional degrees.   Some are involved in the business.  A daughter, Kathryn M. Schrader,  is a successful Gwinnett County Attorney.

 

Joe has a large office building near Discover Mills on Satellite Blvd, which parallels I 85 near Gwinnett Place and the Mall of Georgia.   He was a founding member of a Gwinnett County bank and is involved with a number of professional and civic associations in Gwinnett County.   Joe caused us all some concern a couple years back when he underwent very serious heart related surgery.  After a lengthy recovery, he returned to work and his smiling, cheerful lifestyle.

 

To most of us, Joe has not changed.  He is still a friendly fellow from Farmington.  He and Nancy attend a lot of funerals in Oconee County, especially in recent years as we and our friends age.  They attend our annual OCHS Class of 58 reunion in June, usually at the Farmington Community Center.  Our 1958 Class (57 graduates) has had a reunion every year since graduation in 1958.  We have maintained a close bond of friendship.  I have publicly stated that it is my lifetime favorite club although I have been involved in many activities since.

 

Joe and Nancy also attend our Class of 58 Christmas social at the Blue Willow Inn in Social Circle on the first Monday in December.  I like to tell the story of how  ‘some of the girls’ from the class (my wife Betty, Sarah, Jeannette and Annette, Ernestine, Nancy, Frances and others) started getting together  to eat out several years back.  One year, Nancy brought Joe and he paid for all the meals!  After that husbands were invited and the event has grown each year.

 

We congratulate Joe McCart on his tremendous business and personal success.  He is also a very nice guy.  I am pleased to call him a friend.


Gwinnett Business Magazine

 

 

Special Edition           Who’s Who 2004

    

 

Who’s Who in Gwinnett

 

Pg 30

 

 

 

 

The McCart Group

 

Joe McCart

 

President

 

2405 Satellite Blvd. Suite 200

Duluth, GA  30096

 

770-232-0202

www.mccart.com

 

Joe McCart certainly lives up to our county motto “Success Lives Here” proving that anything is possible in Gwinnett County.  In 1971 he established his insurance agency with initially a staff of two.  Today the company has grown to be among the most highly respected risk management and insurance firms in the nation employing over 80 people.

 

 

“Try not to become a man of success.  Rather, become a man of value.”  Albert Einstein


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