At the end of last summer, LiveRez’s Juston Clarkston made a big decision.
He laid out this crazy idea to LiveRez CEO Tracy Lotz: an extended road trip across the United States to get some quality time with his family before his oldest son entered high school.
Lotz, who is first and foremost a father of three, has always pushed his team to put their families first. And, upon hearing the idea, he said "Go for it."
So, Juston sold his house outside Boise, bought a Ford F350 and a fifth wheel, packed up his wife and four kids, and embarked on the road trip of a lifetime.
Since then, he’s been touring the United States, visiting partners and preaching the gospel of LiveRez to unconverted professional managers.
So far, he’s explored the western part of the United States, and just this week the Clarkstonmobile broke into the great state of Louisiana.
Along the way, he’s had some awesome experiences with the LiveRez family and added more than a few VRMs to the fold.
“My wife and I always wanted to give our kids the experience of seeing the world first hand,” Clarkston said. “But, it’s not every day you work for a company that supports your dreams like LiveRez has.”
Juston and his wife, Emerald, home school their four boys. And, letting them learn through experience has been a great blessing, they said.
Another blessing is that Juston happens to work for a cloud-based vacation rental software provider that has partners spread out all over the United States and that already has many remote employees. To keep on top of his work, all Juston needs is a computer, an internet connection and his cell phone.
Plus, he’s got the added bonus of getting to see partners and prospects face to face, outside of the normal get togethers at industry conferences.
In the coming months, we’ll further chronicle his great adventure. But, for now, let’s look back at some of the stops on his trip so far.
Boise (leaving home)
The Clarkstons are all loaded up and ready for the trip of their lives.
Measuring up their new "big rig" - at 66 feet tip to tail, the Clarkstonmobile is almost as big as some 18-wheelers.
Washington and British Columbia
Biology class at Orcas Island.
Forestry class at Olympic National Park.
Juston prospecting in Whistler. He has a secret weapon...
He leaves them food! #TheWayToVRMsHearts
Portland Timbers game with Matt Tesdall of Family Time Rentals.
A few hours down the road outside Sisters, OR.
Juston had to see Tesdall's new branch in Sisters, which he recently bought from another LiveRez partner.
Down the road in Bend, OR.
Juston was "lucky" to find these folks. (@ Lucky Vacation Rental)
And he even got to meet the office mascot.
San Francisco, CA
San Diego, CA
Oceanography class on the beaches of the Pacific Ocean.
The Clarkstons took a break from the fifth wheel and stayed with our longtime partners at Nancy's Vacation Rentals (a classic photo of Juston and Nancy above).
Palm Springs, CA
Food also works for partners, too.
Biology class at Joshua Tree National Park.
Hoover Dam (outside Las Vegas, NV)
Science class at the Hoover Dam, where the Clarkston kids learned about hydroelectric power.
Geology class at the Grand Canyon.
The Lost Dutchman State Park in Arizona
Tales of the Old West and the legend of secret gold mine near The Lost Dutchman State Park at the base of the Superstition Mountains in Arizona.
Partner Conference (Phoenix, AZ)
Can't miss the Partner Conference and great friends like these.
More friends (and a reunion with Matt Tesdall...a 1,000 miles later).
Santa Fe, NM
In a prime location right off the plaza downtown Santa Fe, AdobeStar Assistant GM Anne Ritchie keeps very busy tending to guests in their luxury condominiums, as well as walk-in traffic interested in their services. They recently had Joel Cohen stay with them for a few months while in Santa Fe for a film. And Annie was super prepared for Juston's visit with 27 questions printed out for him!
Juston with the crew at Casas de Santa Fe.
Hollywood? (no, still Santa Fe)
Back to Portland for VRMA West
Note: He took a plane this time.
Somewhere along the way, Juston grew this epic mustache -- which is only rivaled by Vince's Chuck-Norris-esque beard.
Tyler State Park
You can't go to Texas and not get some BBQ! (@ Stanley's Famous BBQ Pit)
Next Stop: Louisiana
Now, it's time for some crayfish, and to sign up a few more partners in New Orleans. Louisiana, get ready for the Clarkstons.