Subject 2 Change Custom Design & Apparel, LLC (S2C)
Q & A with Jamie LaMont Patterson Co-Owner, Operator and Graphic Designer
February 27, 2007
By: Tiffany D. Tucker
I have the absolute pleasure of interviewing one the greatest emerging graphic designers in North Carolina. Jamie Patterson is always coming up with innovative and creative ideas. Patterson received his Bachelor of Science degree in Sport Management from North Carolina Central University and also obtained his Masters in Athletic Administration from the same. Patterson is a contributing member of the Iota Tau Chapter of Phi Beta Lambda Business Fraternity Inc, Tau Psi Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc, Life member of the National Eagle Scouts Association, Board member of The Sons of Durham, heavy supporter of North Carolina Central University Athletics and is the self proclaimed biggest Little Brother (Captivating Hip-Hop Group in which childhood friend Phonte Coleman is a member) Fan.
TDT: From what I understand there is a very interesting story behind the ground breaking of Subject 2 Change LLC, how did it all get started?
JLP: S2C started in March of 2004 with three partners, Nykia Evly and two other people that should remain nameless. I met Nykia at a Duke Barn Burning where she told me about their company and I wanted to get involved. Nykia informed me that there were already three partners and four at this point would be a little much. I then began to think and research my own business but before I got my plans off the ground in June 2004, Nykia informed me that one of the partners decided to leave the group and that there was an open opportunity to join the S2C team.
TDT: What is the meaning behind Subject 2 Change?
JLP: Just when you thought you had it all figured out, God has ordained you to do something better. You are just the vehicle that He uses to make a difference.
TDT: Knowing that “you have to crawl, before you walk,” what were some of the challenges you all faced in the beginning?
JLP: Learning! I had to learn how to talk and handle customers. I had to do the proper research and know what I was doing, as advised by my friend Maurice Spencer. I had to realize that in order to make S2C a success, it was going to take a lot of time and effort on my part. I could not be afraid to fail, but be accountable for my mistakes and learn from them.
TDT: As the co-owner, what are your personal strategies in making S2C a household name?
JLP: Spreading the word to my friends, producing a high quality product, letting the product speak for itself, providing excellent customer service, networking, and making S2C available via internet.
TDT: Durham is named the “City of Medicine,” and S2C is not medically based, so how does S2C fit the culture of Durham, NC?
JLP: Simply, S2C is Durham! I have lived in Durham for 12 years and I have seen a multitude of changes in Durham. I feel as though I became a man in Durham. I have worked at the Durham Parks & Recreation and the Housing Authority with the youth of the city, also with the Durham Bulls Baseball Team. Durham has evolved and is steadily growing, so is S2C.
TDT: S2C provides a vast array of services for many clients, who are some of your noteworthy customers?
JLP: This is a tough but easy question- I just do not want to leave anyone out.
North Carolina Central University Marching Sound Machine, NCCU Law School, The Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc, Alpha Lamda Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc, Kompleks Creative Design Company, Ideas Coffeehouse, Common Ground Coffeehouse-Brooklyn NY, Little Brother, SoNi Events, John Hope Franklin Center-Duke University, Phi Beta Lamda Inc, Durham Eagles, NCCU Eagle Club, Center for Health & Healing, Sheppard Middle School, ItsDoable.org, Go Help Others Inc and the United Tae Kwon Do Academy to name a few.
TDT: Who was your first customer?
JLP: The Neal Middle School Cheerleaders- with a slight chuckle
TDT: Lately S2C has been expanding in many different ways, what are some of these ground breaking expansions?
JLP: We have moved in to promotional products such as pens, pencils, coasters, bobble heads and etc. These products provide customers and groups with an added quality. In the fall, we are looking for 2 Sales Interns in the Durham area and 1 Fashion and 1 Design Intern in the New York Area.
TDT: What project has given you the most satisfaction?
JLP: I would have to say that it was our first big project with the North Carolina Central University Marching Sound Machine. I was so happy that Mr. Reid believed in us enough to trust that we would provide him and the band with high quality merchandise.
TDT: What is your drive? What fuels the fire to keep you going?
JLP: Knowing that through me I can provide for so many people. One by one we can change the world. We are in a position to give Durham a name and people will take pride in wearing the Subject 2 Change label.
TDT: What should others know about you?
JLP: I am everyday people (as we began to sing the 1992 song Everyday People by Arrested Development). I am willing to work with my customers. I firmly believe in my product. Although, I realized while in Boy Scouts that I was, indeed, different; cut from a different cloth as some may say, when others quit- I didn’t because I liked it! I shop at the dollar store and goodwill. I like hot wings and pretty girls.
TDT: What advice would you give to others in your shoes?
JLP: Be prepared! A valuable lesson that I learned as a scout, college student and as a man- you can not receive your blessing if you are not prepared. Know your business! Take ownership of your shortcomings and mistakes. Most importantly, chase your dreams.
I knew early on in life that I was not fit to work for another person. I heard Bishop Eddie Long say that ‘if you use an alarm clock then you are not living your dream.’
TDT: What are YOUR plans for the future?
JLP: I am going to own an arena football team right here in the Durham/Raleigh area. In graduate school I did a research paper on the owners of National Football League and other Professional teams and I discovered that the majority of them were white. I had the opportunity to intern with the Carolina Cobras Arena Football Team and found that most of the owners had their own businesses that supplied them with this type of money to be able to invest in their own team. This dream became a reality and gave me hope that I can achieve my life goal. I would like to also get into real estate.
A person that I have learned a great deal from is James “Jim” Goodmon owner of Capital Broadcasting Company, Durham Bulls and countless properties in the Triangle. While in meetings and small interactions with Mr. Goodmon, I observed how to talk to people and be prepared for your blessing.
Bottom-line- I want to make a difference in the City of Durham!