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Plugging in Hernando: Family electrical business finds success in many phases

Hernando Today correspondent

Published:   |   Updated: July 3, 2013 at 02:54 PM

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Clyde and Debbie Hady know how to manage their priorities. Raising a family with seven children meant putting their own needs second to building a foundation around their brood - one that would support them while ensuring they understood the values of family and work ethic.

And that meant being flexible and creative with how the couple would bring in enough income to raise their children in a proper environment.

While living in Wisconsin, Clyde pulled from his education in electrical engineering and applied it to several jobs where he answered to a boss. Debbie worked in different industries including health care, applying her own skills in a variety of formats.

But Clyde learned quickly that he couldn't fit into the confinements of a normal 40-hour work week.

"She (Debbie) used to tell me to slow it down," he said, displaying the boyish charm that is such a prominent facet to his warm and approachable nature.

They purchased an inexpensive ice business and entertained the kids on deliveries to circuses and fairs.

"We would get in free," Clyde remembered, which allowed the family to build memories without breaking the bank.

Clyde still worked as an electrician, his "brain work," he said. The ice business was his muscle job.

The children benefited from the business beyond the excitement of impressing their friends.

They also learned the values that come with growing up in a family business.

"They knew that when we had a delivery, we had to move fast before the ice melted," Debbie remembered.

Today, Clyde and Debbie own and operate DC Electric, a business they built out of their home in eastern Hernando County, along with two of their adult children, Joshua and Stephen.

Their 16-year-old granddaughter, Autumn, often helps Debbie run the inside aspects of the business while "the boys" run the calls.

DC Electric responds to commercial and residential jobs, typically generated by word of mouth or repeat customers.

His belief system is grounded in a traditional work ethic based on integrity and honesty.

And Clyde is a solid master of his trade, advocating for higher education, top licensing and building better colleagues through apprenticeships.

His crew, which includes his two sons and an apprentice, runs the jobs on a case by case basis. Every job receives the company's specialized attention.

But not all electricians are created equal, Clyde explained. His crew is heavily educated, completing full apprenticeships and receiving the highest qualifications available.

Clyde is a master electrician, the highest license ranking, and his sons are both journeymen.

But there is much more to Clyde and Debbie Hady's story that, when told, becomes a reminder that dreams can come true as long as the dreamer is willing to be flexible.

While Clyde got his masters degree in process machinery, built a steady income as a skilled electrician and raised his family, his true passion was in creative writing.

In fact, the family moved to Florida so Clyde could pursue his ambitions as a writer.

He has recorded several CDs of his original music and published a few of his poems.

Clyde is humbled by attention, shrugging off his accomplishments that his family is quick to praise. Autumn recalled poems he'd authored that were read to her as a child, impacting her values growing up under that kind of presence.

One poem, titled "Mom's Clowns," is matted and framed on his office wall, with pictures of each of his seven children in clown faces.

Debbie was in the hospital at the time, she explained, having their youngest child. Clyde had taken the other six to an event where they got their faces painted.

"They visited me in the hospital that way," Debbie chuckled at the memory.

He used the pictures of his children in their clown makeup as the backdrop for his poem.

Clyde's creativity and skill as an electrician may have inspired the one piece of work that will get him the most acknowledgment and finally help the couple take the anniversary cruise they've been wanting to go on.

After years of tinkering on designs, Clyde has perfected his Lay-in Electrical Support device that he developed to "provide a safer, more cost-effective method to secure electrical device boxes within lay-in ceiling grids."

The device, which took some time to meet his quality standards, is really taking off.

The LES-I is being marketed through Garvin Industries and appears in their catalog. The device is also available through

Clyde recently sold his first lot of 100.

The Hadys are an inspiration from several different fronts - a tightknit family unit that built a business around their values while still holding firm to their dreams is the truest measure of success.

The couple has proven that dreams come in many different styles. Sometimes it is only a few adjustments that can make take the dream to a lucrative reality.

"A dream is just a vision," Clyde said. "It's what you do with it that matters."

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