Joyce Verplank Hatton’s life has embraced community and political leadership, entrepreneurial success, love and family, and worldwide sailing adventures. Writing with courage and candor, she shares her life’s journey following a trail from a small harbor town on Lake Michigan to Aspen Colorado, New York City, Washington, D.C., and beyond, while skiing the Rockies and sailing the Caribbean.
Hatton’s entrepreneurial drive became evident in 1957 when she developed the first nursery school in Western Michigan, the first child care company to go public in 1970, and the first multi-state computerized USDA child care food program in 1976. Encouraged by a supportive family and a dynamic mentor, Hatton also established herself in media ventures that included FM radio, UHF television, and cable networks.
Hatton brought her leadership experience to state and national politics as well: she was a candidate for Michigan’s new State Board of Education in 1964, Republican County Chairman in President Gerald Ford’s Fifth District, and a delegate to the 1968 GOP national convention in Miami. And she logged over a decade of ocean sailing, charting the course with a talented lifelong sailor.
In this personal narrative, Hatton hopes to encourage other women to value independent economic status, be entrepreneurial, take risks, and march to their own drum.