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Network Connected

Young entrepreneurs, John and Jamie White are  “online” with the community



The White’s strive to be positive role models and desire to give back to the community by giving our youth a safe place for social interaction and events.

McCreary County natives, John and Jamie White, do not regret establishing their now successful computer business in McCreary County.  The husband and wife, both in their thirties, love the natural beauty of the area and consider the opportunity to work at home in McCreary County, surrounded by family and life-long friends, as worth more than any additional money they might have made had they left the county and established “Computer World” in a bigger city.

“I’m infinitely blessed,” Jamie said sincerely.  “With the natural beauty, my home, and the wonderful people here, how could I not consider myself blessed?”

Both will tell you it takes a lot of hard work for a young person to establish a successful business in McCreary County.  The two were dating in 2004 when they decided to start their own business to help pay for college.

“We were very responsible kids at a young age,” Jamie remarked.  “John’s father passed away during the first year of college so we needed extra money for college and to help with family-especially with John’s younger brother.”

Hoping to earn some extra cash, the two started working on computers out of Jamie’s grandmother’s empty house.  It wasn’t long before the two took their business to town-locating in Whitley City and subsequently changing locations several times as the business grew and needs changed.

“Before we located in our present location (next to Dolen’s Appliances), we were at the old dry cleaning building,” Jamie remarked.  “That’s where we were when we started doing the gaming for kids.  The kids were coming in the store looking for things to do at home.  We wanted to provide social interaction for them, so we started having gaming nights.  Gaming went over so well, we outgrew the building-we didn’t have enough space for parking.  We have a lot more space and parking here at our current location.”

The Whites recognize computer repair as Computer World’s “bread and butter.”  Although some new technology is sold to customers, the couple recognize selling technology is not the most profitable approach to take in McCreary County.

“We could make tons more money from selling if we were elsewhere in a larger city,” John remarked.  “But we love living here, so our primary business focus is on technology repair.”

The gaming aspect of their business is motivated, not by profit, but rather by the couple’s desire to give back to their home community.


Friday night Magic has become a weekly event where kids of all ages and backgrounds hang out and play.

Friday night Magic has become a weekly event where kids of all ages and backgrounds hang out and play.


“Kids were always coming in to find something to do,” Jamie shared.  “We saw a need for them to have social interaction and decided gaming would be perfect!”

As evidenced by the many gamers congregated at Computer World on regular Friday game nights, the gaming aspect of the business quickly became popular among many of McCreary County’s youth.  During larger gaming events, it is not unusual for Whitley City’s Computer World to host as many out of store players from all across the United States as other gaming facilities in larger cities such as Knoxville.  Although gaming does not produce a lot of profit for the business, the Whites are excited about it because it helps so many local young people.  Along with the gaming, the couple go the extra mile by incorporating special parties and events to make sure the youth of McCreary have a positive and safe recreational environment.

“All kids deserve a chance,” Jamie declared.  “It’s hard for kids around here who have health issues or who are more academic oriented to find something to do socially.  When we saw the need, we couldn’t turn away.  I never dreamed we would get this involved with the gaming, but it really boils down to doing something greater than yourself.  It’s doing something for the greater good.  When I see these kids blossom with confidence, it means so much to me.”

The Whites are extremely proud of the youth they reach through their business.

“We’ve got awesome kids,” Jamie said enthusiastically.  “We have no problems!”

In addition to helping youth in the community, the Whites work diligently to use their business in a way that positively promotes the community.

“When we have big events, parties, and holiday gatherings, we draw people from outside of McCreary County,” Jamie remarked.  “We help promote local businesses and attractions by getting the names of those places out to our visitors.”

The Whites shared some basic advice for young people wishing to establish a successful business in McCreary County.

“We did lots of different types of work to get started,” John remarked.  “In the end, we chose our own job-we saw a need for this sort of business in McCreary County.  This is something we have a talent and passion for doing.”

“You also have to be responsible,” Jamie added.  “Know that you can do it on your own.  You can’t get a job and quit.  You can’t be lazy.  You have to want to be at your job and give more than 100%.  Be proud of yourself and what you are doing!”

The Whites think back to when they were just starting out in business.

“When we started, we paid our bills and put what was left back in to the business,” Jamie remarked.  “If we made $35.00 a day, we budgeted twenty dollars toward bills and fifteen dollars back to growing the business.”

John pointed out how important customer service and customer relations are for a successful business in a small county such as McCreary.

“This is a small place and word of mouth has helped our business immensely,” John stated.  “Jamie and I complement each other in the business.  I’m quieter and really get into the repairs.  Jamie is more outgoing.  She’s really nice and good to the customers.  We both know the most important thing is to be kind and treat people right.”

The Whites warn young people to be patient and to also realize establishing a successful business requires taking a leap of faith.

“Life doesn’t always stick to a plan,” Jamie warned.  “You may fail.  But, it is OK to fail.  You have to be flexible.  As long as you are happy, small dreams are fine.  Be OK with your dream and know that you can make it happen!”


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