1967 Horatio Alger Award Winner
"Don't let a difficult beginning dictate your path."
Lewis Phillips was reared by his immigrant grandparents on a farm in Upstate New York. He walked more than a mile to his one-room schoolhouse and carried his shoes to make them last longer. Before and after school he performed farm chores and assisted his father in making deliveries. When his father's business failed, Phillips helped out by delivering newspapers. In 1936, he was forced to drop out of school because his family had financial difficulties. He got a job as counter clerk at Nedick's, earning $18 a week at 30 cents an hour. His industry, intelligence, and ability were soon recognized, and he received regular promotions in the business. He interrupted his career for four years to serve in the Army during World War II. In 1945, he was awarded a citation for "outstanding performance of military duty." By the end of his career, he was president of the Nedick's chain of 86 stores in seven states.* Deceased