Denise Stoppleworth – President – IRONCLAD Marketing

Denise Stoppleworth

As I sat around a table laden with turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy and finished off my Thanksgiving dinner with pie and wine, I couldn’t help but reflect on all the blessings in my life this year. To explain, I’m going back to grade school projects with something I am thankful for represented by each letter:


TTime. Though there is never enough, and I’m always wishing for another hour or another day or a little more time to finish that project, I’m very grateful for each day I’ve been blessed with.

HHandfuls. Yes, when I was kid I was a handful. Now I have three wonderful “handfuls” of my own. Many days, this business is a “handful,” but as my grandmother would always say, a full hand is a blessed hand.

A – Adventure. No matter how old I get, I am still in awe of all around me. I am inspired by the beauty I see in nature and the exciting things I learn and encounter in business, from packaging plants to quarries to salt mines. There is so much to learn, and every day is a new adventure!

N – “No.” How many people are thankful for the word no? But, as with anything in life, it’s all about how you look at and frame it. I am a glass half full kind of gal. Therefore, the no’s I am thankful for are the ones that came from my parents, who taught me there is NO mountain so high I can’t climb it and NO challenge so large I can’t meet it. It’s that motivation that kept me striving for my dreams, eventually forming IRONCLAD. Of course, I am SURE there have been several no’s along the way that I haven’t appreciated so much, too.

K – Kevin. When it comes to a partner in life, I can’t ask for a better one. I am blessed with a “stick together no matter what” approach. When he said for better or worse, he meant it, because there has been plenty of better and more than enough worse. As thankful as I am for the big things, I’m also thankful for the small, everyday things, like the way he brings me my caramel latte when it’s been a tough day. Or the way he’ll drive out of his way to pick up a breakfast sandwich for me and leave it on my desk when he knows I raced out without my morning fuel.

F – Fun. My motto – you need to love what you do and have fun doing it or it’s time to find something else. I’ve lived by it and I have never had more fun than I have raising my family and “living the dream” at IRONCLAD.

U – Unity. That’s right. I’m thankful for teamwork. In family, at work and amongst clients, I have the best group of people surrounding me and a “stick together and get ’er done” attitude envelops us all. It’s what makes every day fun and every year memorable. It’s why I am so richly blessed.

L – Laughter. No matter how difficult the challenge or frustrating the circumstance, the laughter and sense of humor of those around me keep spirits bright. I’m thankful for all those in my life that continue to bring humor, light and joy to each day!

This list could go on and on and on, but the basic truth is we all have a choice. As for me and my family, we choose a life of gratitude.

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