What inspires you? Who’s your inspiration? You may be inspired by someone close to you, or perhaps it’s someone famous you admire. Others may be inspired by acts of courage or valor. For me, my lifelong inspiration was my grandmother. She embodied all that I’ve aspired to be. She was successful in life and in business and she was driven to do or produce the absolute best, always. Not because she necessarily had to, but because she wanted to.

My grandmother, Catherine Hanusik, grew up when times were tough. She came over from Prague as a child, leaving some of her brothers and sisters behind, some of whom she never saw again. She ended up quitting school at 13 to help support her family and worked extremely hard her entire life with little complaint. She purchased an apartment building despite having no experience in how to run one; she paid off the mortgage in five years (“Never carry debt,” she would say.). She then opened a deli and ran it from dawn to dusk while also managing her family.

Some of her proudest moments were when one of her 12 grandchildren would accomplish an educational milestone. Perhaps it was because her own formal education was cut short, but she always felt strongly about the importance of education, about learning and striving to become smarter about the world around you.

Years later, she “retired” and moved with us to Georgia and then to North Carolina when she was closing in on 85. It’s at that point in her life that she decided the time had come to finish what she’d started all those years ago and earn her high school diploma. It was a very proud moment for her and all of us. So what do you do after finishing high school? You go to college, of course! She took some community college courses, before her health issues made it too difficult to continue. She died in 2003.

The Healthcare Design Expo & Conference will offer you amazing opportunities for learning, networking, and discovering what’s next. I encourage you to take advantage of all this great event has to offer to help inspire you and your business. After all, as my grandmother demonstrated, you’re never too old to learn.