LUBBOCK, Texas - If you can say, "Howdy," you can work at Howdy Homemade Ice Cream. That sounds easy enough if you’re a neuro-typical employee, but for someone who has Autism or Down Syndrome, it can be the difference between independence and a life of dependency.
Owner Tom Landis is changing the face of Texas businesses, thanks to a book written by legendary football coach Gene Stallings. Tom is not only hiring folks with disabilities, but also putting them in the front of the business and giving them the keys to the store.
The Tex Factor takes you from West Texas for the grand opening of Howdy Homemade Ice Cream in Lubbock, to East Texas at the home of legendary football coach Gene Stallings, who knows first-hand the benefits of putting people with disabilities to work.
He and his wife raised a son with Down Syndrome and later watched him thrive as an employee at the Bear Bryant Museum.
Young Johnny Stallings became not only an inspiration to football fans nationwide, but an inspiration for those with disabilities who want to work.
This isn’t just a local story about an ice cream store, it’s a Texas story about the needs and benefits of hiring those who have been overlooked most of their lives.