Achieving excellence in the world of the entrepreneur is not as rare as one might think.  For those of us who are business owners, there are endless opportunities to show one’s virtue in the midst of what some might think of as a self-centered vocation.

Our company, High Cotton Ties, produces bow ties, cummerbunds, pocket tee shirts and polo shirts in the state of North Carolina, when possible out of cotton grown in the state.  Our mission is to be at the heart of the textile revival in our beloved state of North Carolina, an industry that has lost over 100,000 jobs since NAFTA.  Everything we do as a company is a result of our deep conviction to be as true to that mission as possible.  The motive behind our mission is that we want to see the people of North Carolina return to using their God-given gifts of cotton farming, knitting, spinning, dying, weaving and sewing in greater and greater numbers.  If you look at the work of the entrepreneur as a means to engage people to more fully express the image of God by bringing out their God given talent, then that is an excellent and worthwhile purpose.

High Cotton Ties has made a decision to put their money where their mouth is and purchase North Carolina-grown cotton for its polo and tee shirts; to not only buy the cotton, but gin, spin, knit, dye, sew and embroider the shirts here in NC.  That decision to employ our neighbors instead of manufacturing overseas, where we would easily quadruple our current profit margin, is a decision that speaks to the motive behind our mission.  As a business colleague of ours, Eric Henry of TS Designs says, the new bottom line is not just profit, but a triple bottom line of people, planet and profit.

We are trying to live out our lives in the midst of this business with integrity and honesty with an eye toward the people of this state.  We have always said we want to be able to sleep at night, knowing that we have made a genuine product through a genuine process.  It is our hope that we would have an impact on the economy of this state and the people of this state for good, the ultimate purpose and hope being that we would bring pleasure to the one who made us.

Judy Hill is Founder of High Cotton Ties.