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Damian’s Story

As a person who recently came from a news background, I have a deep down desire to tell stories. Heck, it may even be more than desire, it may just be written into my DNA. I believe that is why I fit in so well at Goodwill: we all want to tell stories, specifically the success stories of our clients.

Damian McGowan, Goodwill’s trusted Surveillance Technician, is responsible for the installation and maintenance of every single surveillance camera at all 30 retail locations, 18 Career Solutions Centers, our storage facilities and our corporate headquarters. He monitors activity on the cameras to ensure everyone is able to evacuate an exit safely in the case of an emergency. He makes sure that cashiers count out change to our customers. Damian basically makes sure we are all safe and honest. He is a crime fighter.

At first glance, Damian’s current job as a surveillance tech would not prove newsworthy. But when I introduce one key, unpredictable element, the story becomes interesting. It is a story of redemption, conquering obstacles, personal setbacks and overcoming a negative stigma.

You see, Damian has a past. He was a drug dealer. Damian preyed on the addictions and shortcomings of people. As a drug dealer, Damian was a criminal. When he left jail, he came to Goodwill, knowing that finding work could prove nearly impossible for an ex-offender.

Damian’s story, in a television news environment, is considered gold.

Without the criminal element, the story lacks intrigue. But with that element, the story thrives, it becomes interesting, and most importantly it represents what Goodwill is capable of doing for folks who want to work, but struggle doing so.

Damian McGowan isn’t just a story for us to tell. He is a result of what Goodwill does best.


Cam Murray is Goodwill Industries of Middle Tennessee’s on-staff Video Production Manager. He considers it a privilege to spend time with the clients of Goodwill as they share their stories.

1 Comment
  • Anthony Boyum
    Posted at 17:25h, 22 June Reply

    Damian is a Outsatnding Young Man he has gone through a lot and in the yreas I have known him he has always tried to do the right thing he is a quick learner and always willing to go the extra Mile to help someone I am Proud to call him a Friend

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