Described as a "rising tide couple," Lance and Julie Turner of Aledo were recently honored by Express Employment Professionals as Franchisee of the Year at the company’s recent International Leadership Conference in Washington D.C.
The Turners own two Express franchise locations in downtown and northern Fort Worth.
“There are so many amazing franchisees in the Express system, so being chosen as the 2023 Express Franchisees of the Year was very special,” Julie said. “We will be forever grateful to be part of this company and the opportunity it has provided us professionally and personally.”
The Turners first joined Express in 1995 and for nearly 30 years hey have sought out volunteer projects and initiatives that help all franchisees, working to develop and mentor the next generation of owners while lending a hand to established offices.
“This thoughtful couple has been seen as regional leaders and connectors, and like a pebble in a pond, their positive influence continues to expand outward to this day,” said Bill Stoller, Express Employment International CEO.
In fact, it was Express that brought the Turners to Aledo. Lance had a background in human resources and Julie was formerly a teacher.
"Joining Express has been a huge blessing. They have a very good support network for their franchisees," Julie said. "Being Express franchisees has allowed us the best of both worlds — being locally owned, but also having a strong international company behind us."
As for highlights during their time with Express, Lance noted, "Being able to help good companies find good people."
Julie added, "The relationships we have made with other franchisees around the USA, they are some of our dearest friends."
The same enthusiasm they brought to Express, the Turners brought to their new hometown, first Fort Worth in 1995 and Aledo in 2004 before their oldest son, Will, started kindergarten. Lance is originally from Amarillo and Julie is from Temple.
They are active members of Aledo United Methodist Church. Julie has also served on the school board since May of 2017, though when her second term is up in May she will step aside as she is not running again.
"It was difficult to make the decision not to run for another three-year term. This team is very passionate about public education and our opportunity as a board, district, and community to make positive impact on the lives of future generations. I will always be a supporter of Aledo ISD and will find to help the district navigate during this tremendous time of growth.
"My youngest child (Brett) graduates in 2024 and I felt it was time to get someone in with children still in school. Work is another reason. We have become increasingly busy and I also took on a new role as franchise developer (18 offices). Also, becoming empty nesters, we want to travel more."
And, of course, both sons played football and won state championships as Bearcats. Will, a 2018 graduate, was a kicker and also played soccer as a defender. He will graduate from Texas Tech this summer. Brett is a junior at AHS was a fullback on last season's state championship squad.
Ironically, the Bearcats' run of success — 26 consecutive seasons with at least one playoff victory — started right around the same time as did the Turners'. Like the Bearcats, Lance said none of it happens without working together.
"The biggest reason of our success is that we work as a team. We each have different strengths and weaknesses and work together to ensure we are meeting the expectations of our clients and internal team," he said.
"I was thrilled when Lance and Julie were recognized by Express International. They have both worked so hard to create an organization that not only supports job seekers in the area by helping thousands of people find jobs but also for their internal employees," said Jan Riggins, General Manager at Express Employment Professionals of Fort Worth. "After over 20 years of working for the Turners, I see how much they truly want their employees to flourish and thrive in their personal and professional lives."
When they aren't working or cheering on their sons and the Bearcats, the Turners love to travel, visit the mountains, spending time at Possum Kingdom and, of course, enjoying family and friends.
As for what lies ahead...
"We are continuing to grow our business year over year and develop employees," Julie said. "Not sure what being an empty nester will look like next year. We have been so busy with kids activities, it will definitely be a change."
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