We've all heard stories of how an agency was started from scratch at the kitchen table or in a spare bedroom, in a tiny cubicle, or a few hundred square feet of office space. They would have seven-day work weeks pleading with carriers, cold-calling jitters, and the first sale that made all the blood, sweat, tears, and toil eminently worth it.
That was the challenge that faced Efrain Ferrer when he came to this country more than 10 years ago from Cuba through Panama. Desperate to escape the Castro regime and experience freedom, Ferrer paid $2,700 in 1989 for a work visa to Panama, where he labored selling fish on the street. In Panama, fish have to be fresh, and before people purchase them, they have to look at a fish's eye to know the fish is fresh.
In 1991, at age 29, Ferrer finally achieved his dream of freedom. With help from a Miami-based organization that assists Cubans who want to immigrate to the United States, he obtained a visa to enter the country. After settling in Miami, he began preparing to become an American citizen. People who were born in America, England, or France were born knowing what it is to live in a liberated country. In order for a Cuban to be free, they must leave their country and find liberty themselves. With an appetite for freedom, Ferrer was able to overcome these obstacles and start his own company, Strong Tie Insurance Services, Inc.