Few people can say they were the first employee at a company unless they were an owner or founder. Even fewer people can say that they were a key part of getting the business up and running and on a path for growth from the beginning. In this blog post, you will meet employee #1 at Pro Athlete and learn a little about his journey and how that journey has lead him to his dream job.
Meet Dave Baker, Parkville, MO native and Pro Athlete’s first ever employee. For thirteen years Dave worked at Pro Athlete while holding every job you can imagine. He answered phones, shipped products, planned events, bought bats and gloves, and even painted the walls. He was the definition of a true team player. Pro Athlete was like home for Dave, and he made sure that all of our business partners felt the same way about Pro Athlete. He was a master at building relationships.
Throughout his time working at Pro Athlete, Dave also coached football and baseball on the side to feed his passion for coaching and working with kids. As the years passed, that passion for helping kids on the field became a big focus for Dave. At that point, he knew he was meant to be in education and as amazing as Pro Athlete was, he had a bigger calling. In 2013 he left Pro Athlete in pursuit of his dream to become a full-time teacher/coach. He went back and finished up his education and worked some part-time teaching jobs here and there at the same time.
With all of the experience and education behind him, he was able to land his dream job as a Middle School Special Education teacher within the Platte County school district. In addition to his time during the school day, he’ll also assist in the coaching of both varsity football and baseball. Dave credits Pro Athlete and is thankful for the time he was able to spend in the early years of what was then Pro Athlete Sporting Goods.
“My time at Pro Athlete really did help me get to where I am today. I learned a lot; I learned the most about chasing your dreams and figuring out what you really want to do. From the beginning, I knew I wanted to serve a purpose to local athletes, and my community. That’s exactly what I’m able to do.”
In 2016 Dave was inducted into the Pro Athlete, Inc. inaugural Hall of Fame class. Dubbed The Giver in his Hall of Fame bio, Dave’s legacy at Pro Athlete will live on forever. We want to congratulate Dave on his recent Hall of Fame induction and also for landing his dream job. From employee #1 to Hall of Fame member and now to educator and coach. What an amazing path for an amazing person!
Once A Pro, Always A Pro is a saying we use around here a lot. It’s pretty easy to see why!