Lance has been an ATP at the Tifton, GA branch for the past eight years and in the industry for the last 25 years. Getting his start at just 19 years old, Lance began his career as a sales representative for a medical equipment company and quickly realized he had the most familiarity and passion for powered mobility. “I was the guy they would send in to do seating assessments for customers, prior to needing a degree, and found I had a real knack for seating and positioning custom wheelchairs,” said Lance. “I became a member of NARRTS and a seating specialist, and then eventually became an ATP a few years after.”
Lance knew early on in his career that he wanted to be an ATP. “I can’t imagine doing anything else,” said Lance. “I feel really good about my abilities and I feel really good that I can provide an outcome that will change our customer’s lives for the better. Success stories are what keeps me going.”
Lance added, “It’s a hard job and a stressful job – our customers are sitting and waiting for you to be their hero, and most of the time you are their only hope. You have to come through for them so they can live their lives.”
One customer in particular that made an impact on Lance in the process of providing her with much-needed mobility is Karen. Karen was recently diagnosed with ALS and her mobility is slowly deteriorating. Lance, who works with Karen’s nephew, was called in by her sister to see if he could fit Karen to one of her son’s older wheelchairs.
“Karen’s sister called me and said that Karen had tried to get a chair through another company but they wanted to charge her a crazy amount of money,” said Lance. “I went out to Karen’s house and tried to fit her to her nephew’s older chair and it just wasn’t going to work. So, I sat there and tried to figure out a way to make a new chair work for her.”
Lance worked with his team at the Tifton branch, including his CCC, Buffy, to quickly identify what her insurance would cover. “My customer care manager, Luke, called her insurance company and they told him that the previous company got her numbers wrong,” said Lance. “She had already met her deductibles and the cost of a new chair would be substantially less than originally thought.”
While Karen was skeptical at first of Lance and his team actually being able to find a solution, she soon realized that a custom powerchair was a very real possibility and was about to change her life. Lance was able to secure her additional funding from a local ALS clinic and expedite the order so Karen could receive it four months earlier than expected.
“Karen’s story is a great example of what it’s like to be able to go into a situation where there is no hope and provide hope,” said Lance. “I work with some first-class people and that makes it rewarding.”