New Business Development Manager
George is our Sales, Marketing, and New Business Development Manager. Originally from New York, George moved to South Africa when he was 18. He immediately fell in love with this part of the world.
George spent the first part of his career in luxury hospitality, working at some of South Africa’s finest retreats, hotels, and venues, before establishing his own entertainment company. But working 24/7 in the entertainment industry, George soon found himself living a party lifestyle, which eventually took its toll. George sought help from Jeanine and Giles Fourie for addiction.
“Going through recovery was without question the best thing I’ve done in my life. It gave me hope; it gave me strength; it gave me the ability to want to live, to want to persevere. Most of all, it gave me the desire to help other people.”
Following his recovery, George trained as a recovery coach. Keen to utilise all his skills, he fell in love with the idea of being able to combine his recovery experience and coaching with his hospitality expertise. George found his ideal position at White River Manor. Not many people can boast such an extraordinarily well-matched skillset, but George can!
“I have the perfect job. I get to help people whilst simultaneously expanding a business that is designed around helping people, and for me, that’s a truly beautiful thing and a blessing.”
George’s role is incredibly varied. He could be spending time abroad at an Expo speaking to some of the world’s most revered psychiatrists and psychologists or in the office on-site at White River Manor, putting together the next marketing strategy. One thing that is abundantly clear about George is his passion for the extraordinary therapeutic environment he feels privileged to work in.
“Being part of this team is my passion and purpose. It gives me an understanding of who I am and what I’m supposed to do. This is a really beautiful venture for me because I get to see people move from despair to hope.”
“There’s nothing like White River Manor in the world. It’s a therapeutic environment. It is one of the most serene and beautiful places set in the most beautiful surroundings, and the clinical team is second to none.”
George is incredibly proud of the fact that so many clients (70-80%) ask to stay on for additional time, which he says is testimony to the holistic and personalized programs, the exceptional multi-disciplinary team, the luxurious facilities, and the incredible surroundings.
“We’re not offering a 12-step-based program like many other centers in the world. We find out what makes people tick and then design a program around the individual. If a client doesn’t want to participate in equine therapy, we’ll supplement it with something they do like. I love that we take our clients out into the real world on weekends and teach them how to have fun again.”
George says the greatest thing about his job is seeing people arrive broken and watching them leave with an insane amount of hope. It is, he says, “…a completely different version to the person that arrived, which is quite an amazing thing to witness.”
Outside of work, George loves keeping fit at the gym and playing basketball. But most of all, George loves taking his two golden retriever dogs out on hikes and spending time with his family.