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Thomas Monaghan…visionary, entrepreneur, Catholic philanthropist, founder of Legatus, Ave Maria Town, and Ave Maria University.
Thomas Monaghan was born in 1937 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. At the age of 4, his father passed away. Two years later, his mother put Thomas and his brother into the St. Joseph Home for Children in Jackson, Michigan. The orphanage was run by the Felician Sisters of Livonia. It was here that Monaghan was instilled with devotion to the Catholic church. In high school, Tom entered the Grand Rapids seminary where he studied to become a priest.
Tom: “I wanted to become a priest at that early age.”
Interviewer: Why didn’t you become a priest?
Tom: I got kicked out of the seminary. I went into the seminary in the 10th grade and lasted till Easter.
Interviewer: And because what did you do?
Tom: I was a little mischevious, pillow flights, talking in study hall, and things like that. I got good marks, I was very serious about being a priest. I was crushed when I got kicked out.
When Monaghan graduated from high school, his yearbook bore the caption “The harder I try to be good, the worse I get; but I may do something sensational yet.
In 1956, Monaghan, believing he was entering an Army recruiting center, enlisted in the Marines. In 1959 he received an honorable discharge and enrolled in the University of Michigan. His formal education ended early when he left school to work full-time in the pizza business.
An opportunity arose to buy a pizza business. For five hundred dollars down in Ypsilanti (Ipsalanti) Michigan.
Interviewer: Did you have any experience of running a restraunt or fast food service?
Tom: Uhhh not really.
After buying his first store, Tom Monaghan would discover a gaping hole in the pizza business of the 1960’s…free delivery service…a gap he was eager to fill.
Tom: I was the first one to focus on delivery. I saw the potential of convenience for people, and I thought it could be built into a big business.
The pizza business also allowed to Tom to meet his wife. After delivering a pizza to a college dorm, he met a girl and later would ask her out on a date. Three dates later, Tom asked Marge to marry him. They have been blessed with four daughters and eight grandchildren, and in August of 2012 they will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary.
Tom continued on and kept busy in the pizza business, and after a few years, the little business based on a big idea became Domino’s Pizza.
Domino’s rapidly grew, and in the mid-1980’s, there were three stores opening every day. At one point, it was the largest pizza chain ever.
Continues on....will send rest of the script, this is pretty much half of the script.
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