Helping to Invent Whole Foods

Battles with my mentor made me wiser, confident, and determined never to work for anybody again.

I could have been a real estate mogul. I could have been the Donald Trump of Boston (without the bankruptcies). I could have bought and sold land, developed properties, and built shiny skyscrapers filled with the offices of financial companies willing to pay outrageous amounts for each square foot. In 1978, I had everything in place for a career in commercial real estate. I had the contacts. I had the certificate. I was on my way. But I knew I wanted to make my millions in another field.

There were two things wrong with real estate: (1) it was boring, and (2) I wanted to work in an industry with heart and ...

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