Gordon Hartman on the Power of Being Inclusive
This episode is sponsored by Gusto.
When Gordon Hartman saw his daughter, Morgan, struggling to socialize at the pool one day, he set out to find a place where she and others with special needs like her could have fun. When he couldn’t find one, he decided to build it for himself. Hartman talks with SUCCESS.com’s Shelby Skrhak about the vision behind Morgan’s Wonderland, a $36 million San Antonio theme park that welcomes all.
Since Morgan’s Wonderland opened in 2010, the park has welcomed 1.1 million people, including children with and without special needs, from more than 69 countries. “There is no such word as ‘can’t’ within the 30 acres of our park,” Hartman says.
Inclusivity was what drove Hartman to create Morgan’s Wonderland, Morgan’s Inspiration Island and Wonderland Texas so that children of all abilities could enjoy the park.
The parks have given Hartman a new purpose in life. “When I ran numerous companies, I’d come home at the end of the day literally exhausted from the stress,” Hartman says. “Now I come home with an enormous amount of energy. The reason is because before it was just about trying to hit a bottom line all the time, whereas now it’s about fulfillment.”
Favorite quote from this episode:
“When you give the opportunity of inclusiveness to special needs individuals, you’ve helped their self-esteem. And when you help their self-esteem, it gives them the desire to want to do more because they feel they can do more.”
— Gordon Hartman
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