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SCREEN PRINTING SEPTEMBER-OCTOBER 2022
Owner | Tshirts for Hope, Fortson, Georgia
“I am an encourager and connector of people, and I think that’s where I can give back the most.”
Q: Your nomination form lists at least 20 organizations you’re involved in, including being a founding member of U.N.I.T.E Together, donating your time with adults and students with disabilities in the local schools and community, and advocating and speaking for Al Anon and Alateen. Why is philanthropy and giving back to your community paramount in your life and business?
AM: When I spend time where I’m passionate, I’m much better with my time management. It’s just something I’ve always done, so I don’t really look at it as being a big deal. I find joy in supporting other people’s passions and what they are excited about.
Q: You were the only female judge in the screen printing category at SkillsUSA Nationals this year and are now mentoring four students who competed in the competition by connecting them with other printers in their area. You’re scheduled to volunteer at schools moving forward to help encourage and prepare the students for the competition and to join the industry. Why is mentorship and training the younger generation important to you? How do you think this has impacted the screen printing industry?
AM: I love asking questions, so people end up mentoring me not necessarily by the normal teacher/student route, but because I keep asking questions and they keep answering. I’m lucky to have so many people in the industry who just keep replying! As a former teacher, I know what the student to teacher ratio is, and teaching screen printing is no easy task. I want all creatives to see how they can be part of the screen printing industry. I am an encourager and connector of people, and I think that’s where I can give back the most. I’ve been able to connect students with local shops and printers or provide them with social media resources. There are so many exciting things going on in our industry.
Q: Your nomination form states: “Tshirts for Hope does not have a storefront and is located on eight acres outside of the city limits. Although they do not have set hours, they welcome people to visit and often have other printers come from out of town. On a monthly basis, Amber welcomes people with a serious interest in screen printing to come into the shop to get hands-on experience before they make financial investments. She also welcomes graphic designers once a month to help educate them on how they can get the best product and simplify the process of working with screen printers for their brands. Amber loves to visit shops in whatever town she’s in to learn more or provide suggestions of what they may find helpful.” Why is it important for you to give back and to educate yourself and others in the screen printing industry?
AM: I serve and give back because scripture says to love our neighbor and when I give back, that’s the closest I feel to God, and as Christians we are called to serve like Jesus did.
We should never stop learning or being curious. I’m so excited about pretty much everything related to printing and I like to share my excitement with others.
Q: Your shop’s mission statement is “We believe we can make a positive change in the world one print at a time.” You do not take income from your shop, instead you put that money back in to create a better print and to invest in the future. Your nomination form says: “She is not intimidated to jump in and learn new things to be a better printer… Tshirts for Hope is a small shop with a big heart and big goals to make local and global impacts.” What has been your biggest accomplishment to date?
AM: Seeing people locally and globally wearing our shirts is just humbling. “Boundaries Are Beautiful” and “…. instead be filled with the Holy Spirit” are two of my favorite projects that show support for people affected by addiction and alcoholism. Working with Jason (my sole employee) and our other friends with disabilities makes printing much more impactful!
Q: What does being a woman in the screen printing industry mean to you?
AM: It means everything! I absolutely love it! I get to share my joy, compassion, and a different perspective with my fellow male printers. It allows me the opportunity to encourage and inspire other women to join our industry or other industries where there aren’t a lot of women.
“I get to do what I love every day: print shirts that inspire people, support their passions, and celebrate their memories and adventures,” says Amber.
PRINTING UNITED ALLIANCE
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