Meet Michael Frost! In 1982, Michael suffered a spinal cord injury while body surfing in Mexico, leaving him a complete C5-6 quadriplegic. Following the injury, Michael came to Atlanta to undergo extensive rehab at The Shepherd Center and later attended the Tommy Nobis Center community rehabilitation program to become job-ready. From that point on, Michael thrived in sales and eventually established his own business, TelPlus Communications, here in Woodstock. Michael and his deceased wife Pam (Pam died in 2010) were married for 16 years, served as Foster Parents in Cherokee County for six years, and were mentors to other foster parents in the DFCS program. They adopted a beautiful daughter in 2010 who is now 19 years old. Michael has been recognized for his extensive community service, including serving with The Shepherd Center, Woodstock Jaycees, The Hope Center, Next Step Ministries, Camp Dream in Warm Springs, GA, and the Tommy Nobis Center. Michael enjoys camping, fishing, reading and working in his yard.
It was incredibly energizing to talk with Michael, as we discussed everything from family to music to a shared passion for community service. Thank you so much for your time, Mike!
Question: What inspired you or led you to your current career?
Answer: Truly just the fact that I was looking for work! After my spinal cord injury, I needed to be able to work using my brain, and I love making connections with people, so sales was good for me. Through various rehab programs, I found employment at MCI, a start-up phone company. Then after 15 years with MCI, my wife and I started a payphone route, but we all know where payphones went, and if you don’t continue to change with the times, you’re done. So, we started doing project management for larger companies. Like Verizon for example- they’ll outsource a project to us based on the resources they need for the specific job. So, we do a lot of project management work for providers. I’ve done that for 21 years, but again, you’ve got to keep in step with the changes, so about 2 years ago I acquired another company, a cyber-consulting firm out of Minnesota. Now I do a lot of work in cybersecurity.
Q: What is your favorite restaurant in Woodstock, and what do you love there?
A: Taste of Italy on Hwy 92- they have awesome pizza
Q: How long have you lived or worked in Woodstock?
A: I’ve been here for 31 years. Mine was the first house in a new subdivision.
Q: Who is the most interesting person you’ve met here in Woodstock?
A: David Rogers- former Mayor of Woodstock. He was an incredible individual- he was just a visionary! The way that the city is thriving and growing today is exactly what he wanted it to become. He loved his town, he told people about it, and you were a better person if you knew David Rogers.
Q: Who would you like to see nominated as a Face of Woodstock?
A: Stacy Walls- She works with me and she’s one of my best friends. She constantly puts other people first- always. She started the 9/11 event in downtown Woodstock and ran it for years! She also always makes sure that hundreds of foster children have Easter baskets every year. She loads up my van and drives them up to DFCS. Upon herself, she gets people to donate toothbrushes and soaps and the like and takes them to veterans in nursing homes. She’s on the advisory board for Next Step Ministries- she’s just constantly giving!
Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would it be? And why?
A: Iceland- I want to see the Northern Lights, and I’m going there next year!
Q: What is your favorite movie OR what is the first movie you remember seeing in a theatre?
A: ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ and ‘Shawshank Redemption’ are my favorite movies. The first movie I saw was at a drive-in theatre and it was ‘Bambi’.
Q: What advice would you give a crowd of people?
A: Let’s get along- whether you’re conservative or liberal, whether you’re Christian or Muslim, let’s just respect each other. It’s like we don’t want to stop and listen to the whole side. Immediately we know our side or opinion is right and we shout it out without listening to the other person. Let’s respect each other enough to listen to each other.
Q: What is something on your bucket list?
A: To get a patent, which I’m actively working on!
Q: What is your favorite music/ 3 bands you would like to see (dead or alive)?
A: That’s real easy- The Birds, CCR (Creedence Clearwater Revival), and Supertramp.
Q: What current/former local business makes you the most nostalgic about Woodstock?
A: The Dean’s Store. It’s the welcome center now, but it’s been around since 1906 and was a general store.
Q: Choosing anyone alive and a non-relative: with whom would you love to have lunch? Why? Where in Woodstock would you have lunch?
A: Warren Buffett, for his wisdom and insight to the business world. I would take him to The Century House Tavern, cause he looks like one of those kind of guys.
Q: What is your favorite thing or something unique about Woodstock?
A: Seeing live music at Madlife. I’ve seen a lot of great tribute acts there, like ACDC, CCR, Pink Floyd, STYX, ABBA… They feature a great variety of music.
Q: Where do you see yourself in 5 or 10 years?
A: I see myself happily married, semi-retired, traveling and volunteering
Q: (Even for friends or family), what is something interesting that most people don’t know about you?
A: I’m a history buff. I love studying medieval times, the rise and fall of the Roman Empire, the Civil War, and the Vietnam War.
Q: What 3 words or phrases come to mind when you think of the word HOME?
A: Love, family, and warmth
Q: If you were cast into a major motion picture and had your choice of anyone to be your co-star, who would you choose?
A: Denzel Washington
Q: If you had a full-time staff member that was fully paid for, who would you choose?
Chef, Housekeeper, Driver, Coach, Physical Fitness Trainer, or Nanny?
A: A driver- I hardly have patience for the way people drive sometimes.