This month, Gulfshore Business’ WINK News partners honor their 40 under 40s. Forty people who are rising stars in their industries but also have a profound impact on the community.
About a third of those honored were born and raised in Southwest Florida. Then there’s a whole other group whose family or work put them down.
For one man, making the blind leap from South Dakota to southwest Florida was only part of the adventurous risk.
If it’s fishing rods, kayaks, and My Little Pony underwater sea scooters, chances are the “Kayak DIY” YouTube star has tried it, reviewed it, and published it.
Justin Lammers’ studio is on the canal just behind his Cape Coral home.
“It’s hard for me, you know, to keep quiet. But a few times a week I film content, you know, in the backyard,” Lammers said.
The internet really has a spirit of its own. Lammers never knew his rise to YouTube fame would begin with Photoshop DIY and buttons.
“I used to teach people how to love getting rid of acne in pictures of old people. Why? Because I had acne in college. And it was something that I found helpful, like, I was embarrassed about it,” Lammers said.
Now companies ship all kinds of water products directly to him. All are craving for his video reviews which reach thousands of people online.
But the journey to success has sometimes been a trying one. This forced him to move from South Dakota to Southwest Florida.
The warm weather, sun and water allowed him to start a kayak rental business and create content all year round.
“And so we ended up buying this property without seeing it. He was a repairman. A 100 year old lady lived here. And we had to put a lot of work into that dream,” Lammers said.
Lammers went to school to become a nurse, then reinvented himself and now lives in the moment.
“And I love the feeling that with this career, it just keeps surprising me and I can keep growing,” Lammers said.
Reaching his 81,000+ subscribers on YouTube hasn’t always been easy. At some point, doubt began to creep in and her family questioned her choices.
“You know, they were definitely skeptical. I still have family members saying, you’re not giving up on your healthcare career, are you? You know, no matter what you have to keep doing, I’m like, well, I love it. I love what I do in the healthcare field. But like, it creates family time. And I can do much bigger things,” Lammers said.
This is perhaps Lammers’ greatest message. This family moment. Precious moments with your children are truly priceless.
“My sailor daughter, I just want to be able to watch her grow. So, you know, everyone thinks with YouTube, you know, it’s about the money. It’s about, you know, the fame and all of that. But for me, it’s really a matter of time that it creates,” Lammers said.