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Moving Forward with Joey Landis

Joey Landis
Joey Landis
Bicycling requires a specific mentality. It demands you accept sole responsibility for your momentum. Wind and incline contradict you. Every agonizing second of that contradiction pings your resolve. You either respond with a willful decision to move forward or you let resistance stop you. If you don't let it stop you, the willful decision to move forward becomes second nature. Resistance becomes irrelevant.
This is the independent, self-directed mentality that propels cyclists. Its also the mentality that propels entrepreneurs. Unsurprisingly, it is the mentality that drives a cyclist to be an entrepreneur. 
Joey Landis is co-owner of the downtown Detroit-based bike messenger service Rock Dove Couriers. Joey founded Rock Dove with Tim and Melissa Sargent. The trio noticed downtown legal and accounting firms needed someone to deliver signed contracts. They collaborated to meet that need. Doing so also met a need for Joey.
"I've had a couple of jobs with terrible bosses," Joey said. "That convinced me that, eventually, I would have to be my own boss. I love it."
Even so, Joey's entrepreneurial path has not been unimpeded. Business has declined as many downtown legal and accounting offices have started to use electronic transfer for many of their documents. In response, Rock Dove has broadened the scope of their delivery services to include food and other non-legal, non-accounting related packages. 
A little wind. A bit of an incline. Nothing a determined cyclist can't peddle through.

Photo essay by Noah Stephens for The People of Detroit, a photodocumentary project founded in 2010 as a counterpoint to media fixated on despair and disrepair in the storied birthplace of American auto manufacturing. For additional portraits, visit www.thepeopleofdetroit.com.

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