The Value of Relationships
A Message from Board Chair David Masin, Selden's Home Furnishings
“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” ~ Thomas A. Edison
It was a humid day on July 21st, 1921 when my great-grandfather stepped onto American soil for the first time. Getting off the boat on Ellis Island, with his wife and his son (my grandfather) he held only a beat up suitcase and a couple of dollars, having no idea where he would end up. He had a friend in a far away and unknown place called Seattle who was in the jewelry business. Hearing that Seattle was full of opportunity he decided to make the cross-country journey to the Emerald City, toting his wife and son and his tattered suitcase with him.
Once reaching Seattle, he wanted to figure out exactly what he would do, he realized that he didn’t really care for the jewelry business, but really enjoyed repairing damaged furniture that had fallen from trains. While repairing a chair one day, he met a friend who managed the Frederick and Nelson furniture department in Seattle. Seeing how passionate my great-grandfather was when it came to repairing furniture, his friend came to him with a proposition. The manager had received an entire train car filled with damaged furniture and wanted to see if my great-grandfather would be interested in buying the entire car-full. With much hesitation, he decided to part with his life’s savings and bought the whole lot. After repairing all of the goods he purchased, he opened a store in what is now the Central District in Seattle, establishing Masins Furniture in 1927. What followed was three more generations of Masins in the furniture business.
While the example of my great-grandfather’s story is nearly 100 years old, his journey isn’t unlike that of many people that do business in Bellevue today. While Bellevue isn’t as unknown as Seattle was back then, the chance at garnering success has led us to this city with the expectation that success is attainable.
We have all come to Bellevue for new opportunity, to make connections and to grow our business. What unites us all together and allows us to make these connections, is the organization that I am proud to represent as the Chairman of the Board in the coming year, the Bellevue Chamber of Commerce.
While we live in a world where exchanging Twitter handles has replaced shaking hands, or FaceTime conversations have taken over for face-to-face conversations, the Bellevue Chamber stays relevant knowing relationships matter, people matter and interpersonal relationships are not a thing of the past. While we continue to embrace technology, we will not lose sight of these values taught to us by generations that have come before us.
I hope you will join me at the Eastside Annual Dinner on October 6 at the Hyatt Regency Bellevue so that I have the opportunity to meet you and learn how the Chamber can be of help to you and your business in the coming year.
Selden’s Home Furnishings
Bellevue Chamber of Commerce