A Valpo native for most of her life, Erica George has raised a family, become a member of her family's successful business, and continues to do everything she can for the community around her.
For the past fifteen years, George has been working with her mother, Donna Flanagin, and sister, Monica Decker, at their long-time Valpo family business – Flanagin's Bulk Mail Service. At Flanagin's Bulk Mail Service, George has many responsibilities from secretarial to operating forklifts to loading and taking mail to the post office. The family works together, filling in wherever needed.
"There are many perks that come with my job," George said. "When I first started, I knew that working with my family would give me the most 'freedom' to raise my kids and still be able to work. When they were young, before they were in school, I was able to bring them to work with me, and now I get to watch my two nieces grow up. I have also been able to pursue other passions of mine while still being able to work full time. I have truly been blessed in my work and my life."
Through her job at Flnaign's Bulk Mail Service, George does a lot of volunteer work for many years. They hold annual garage sales to raise money for different non-profits, charities, and causes. All year long, George helps her family collect items that are needed by the local non-profits. She and her family also take part in the local Popcorn Parade as "The Flanagin Fairies," where they dress up like fairies for the children to have a one-of-a-kind experience – much like one might have at Disney World.
"We know that not everyone is able to go to Disney, so we bring our own little take on Disney to Valpo," George said. "We also attend charity events and fundraisers as 'The Flanagin Fairies.' I love being able to give back to the community, helping others and putting smiles on the young kinds' faces."
When George isn't working or volunteering with her family, she enjoys a wide variety of hobbies. Exercising, lifting weights, and kickboxing are some of her favorite pastimes. She has competed in bodybuilding/figure competitions and even won her IFPA Figure Pro Card in 2011. Another interest of George's is "junkin" or "pickin."
"I have always been artistic and loved to build different things," George said. "Recently, I have taken my hobby and turned it in to a new adventure. I take items that are garbage or broken and I fix them up or turn them into something different. I am able to give items new life and keep them out of the landfill."
George also enjoys spending time with her husband, Tony, her two children, Riley and Reese, and the rest of her family. Whether working, volunteering, or just relaxing, family is the most important thing to Erica George, and she wouldn't have it any other way.