By MORGAN MANNS
As the well-known entrepreneur, movie-producer, amusement park creator Walt Disney once said, “If you can dream it, you can do it.”
For 23-year-old Adam Daunhauer, his dreams are becoming a reality.
Three years ago, Daunhauer started his own business, AD Digital, LLC. AD Digital makes DVDs out of VHS, makes CDs out of cassettes and records, creates digital scrapbooks, PowerPoints, slideshows and more.
Daunhauer said he is working on copying 1,380 slides (used in a projector) and putting them on DVDs for a customer who lives in Findlay and traveled to China, India and Africa.
According to Daunhauer, his interest in technology was one of the two reasons he started his business.
“I was writing applications out around town for jobs but I never got called for a job interview,” he said. “That’s the reason why I decided to prepare getting my own business.”
When Adam was 18 months old, he had a serious reaction to an MMR shot that caused him to have a seizure. As he grew, his mother, Gena Daunhauer, noticed her son was unable to answer questions or hold conversations, he had trouble sleeping and had erratic behavior.
When Adam Daunhauer was 4-years-old, he was given a brainwave bio-feedback test, similar to an EEG, according to his mother.
The test alerted Gena Daunhauer of her son’s unbalanced brainwaves, which was caused by traumatic brain injury sustained during his seizure. Adam Daunhauer then began bio-feedback training.
“This was the first thing that changed our lives as far as he was progressively,” Gena Daunhauer said. “It really brought him out of his shell.”
When her son was 8 years old, he started working with NACD, the National Association for Child Development.
NACD provided a different kind of therapy for Adam Daunhauer, according to his mother. This nonprofit organization allowed her to home-school her son in order to help him to “become a functioning adult.”
“It’s all about processing,” said Gena Daunhauer, a former third-grade teacher. “The more input you give the brain, the better the output is going to be. Typically in classrooms we give a little bit of input and expect a lot of output. Part of the problem is the way it goes in; if your brain isn’t organized correctly, the information goes to the wrong side of the brain, like putting a file in the wrong drawer, and you don’t know where to retrieve it.”
She said NACD has been helpful in her son’s development.
“We’ve come a long way; we’re not going to give up any time soon,” she said.
Now that Adam Daunhauer has successfully begun one business, he said he wants to embark on another path and start a business in dog care.
According to Daunhauer, he started caring for dogs after his sister, Amanda, went away to college and could no longer care for the dogs she was dog-sitting.
“My favorite part is I like their company,” Daunhauer said. “Sometimes I take them upstairs and they watch movies with me and they’re so quiet. But when I leave them, they start barking.
“I said to mom, I said ‘I want more; more business.’ So we got an idea of doing dogs. I think the dogs would love to have a place.”
Daunhauer works from home, when caring for dogs and when working for AD Digital. He said he works upstairs but that space is too crowded. He said he feels a place of his own would benefit both him and the dogs.
Adam and Gena Daunhauer discussed many ideas for his new business venture, AD Canine Care, including the construction of a building in which the entrepreneur would work. They said they want to have individual rooms for every canine, as opposed to kennels.
According to Gena Daunhauer, because her son — and their family — are a Disney lovers, each room will have a Disney character theme. For example, one room may be dedicated to Cheshire cat from “Alice in Wonderland,” decorated in pinks and purples, while another room may be dedicated to Goofy, with oranges and blues. In addition to the selective colors, a distinct characteristic from that character may be added to the wall, such as Cheshire’s floating smile.
With the current layout, there is enough space for multiple rooms, a play area, a small store, a grooming center and a movie room as well as a fenced-in outdoor area. In addition to the canine area, there will be a space where Adam Daunhauer can live; a bedroom, a kitchen, and a place for him to complete work for AD Digital.
“I’ve been going on Google searching for style ideas,” he said. “I had a dream about the plans I wanted for my place; I dreamt about it.”
As Walt Disney once said, “All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.”
Daunhauer’s dream is to run both of his businesses, AD Digital and AD Canine Care, from his new place, which will be built on his parents’ property, roughly four miles south of Fostoria off of U.S. 23.
“If you would’ve asked me 10 years ago if I would be running or helping run a business I would have said ‘no way, are you kidding me?'” Gena Daunhauer said. “It’s a challenge but we’re pleased and proud that he’s willing to do it, that he’s found two things that he has a passion for.”
“I’m feeling better now that I have found a place to live and work,” Adam Daunhauer said. “We’re going to do the best we can with what we can do.
“I don’t find anything hard. I’m learning as I’m doing it. It’s really fun and I’m looking forward to (running both businesses) for a long time, probably until I’m 61.”
AD Digital and AD Canine Care can be found on Facebook. While there is not yet a website for AD Canine Care, AD Digital can be visited at addigitalmedia.net.
To contact Daunhauer directly, email AD_Digital@yahoo.com.
For more information on NACD, visit www.nacd.org.
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