With 26 years of experience behind him, there’s no doubt that Chuck Fitzgerald knows the ins and outs of the payroll world. Yet, when Chuck came to ConnectPay four years ago following a merger, he found himself learning more about the industry than ever before.
“When I came here, it really opened me up,” Chuck describes. “It felt like I just started doing payroll again. I had been on autopilot for the past five years and I was finally able to use my brain again to help my clients. I really enjoy that I can learn new things every day in order to better help our clients.”
Chuck goes on, “I don’t really have a high level of thought for what success is. It could be a small thing in my life or a very big thing. But at the end of the day, if I’ve been able to help my clients, that’s the most important thing to me. I love helping my clients get just a little better each day.”
Yet, despite his modest nature, if anyone knows the meaning of success, it’s Chuck. Not only is he a skilled payroll professional, but he’s also a 9-year Muay Thai kickboxing veteran and a passionate drummer with a taste for heavy metal. In fact, Chuck used to play the drums for the metal band Sacred Reich, touring with them all across the U.S. and Europe.
“It was so out of my comfort zone. Back then I was really shy,” Chuck confides. “The fact that I hopped on a plane and flew to the other side of the country was big for me. I almost didn’t do it, but I knew that if I didn’t try, I’d regret it for the rest of my life. So, I went and jammed, and the rest is history!”
Beyond the music, Chuck was eager to travel the world with his band. “Getting to see different cities and states, seeing the landscape when we were traveling from city to city, walking around and seeing different people. I got to experience so many beautiful things,” Chuck continues. “I learned a lot – every day we were in a different city or different club. I learned how to work with all types of people and adapt to new situations daily – a skill that I still use to this day. It opened my eyes and helped me break out of my shell.”
And breaking out of his shell is exactly what Chuck did. Drumsticks in hand, Chuck went on to play one of the biggest shows of his life, drumming with Sacred Reich in front of 65,000 people during a music festival in Holland. “Another band canceled, and they called us to play the festival the night before it was supposed to happen,” Chuck explains. “It wasn’t even planned, but we didn’t have time to be scared about it. We didn’t even have time to think about it!”
Chuck continues to look back on his touring days with a lot of pride. “It was a fun time and a lot of my friends were jealous. They were all settling down with their families while I was touring,” Chuck reminisces. Yet, as time moved on, Chuck also began to seek a more family-centric life. “It took me 48 years to find my wife and 51 years to find my son,” Chuck reveals with a smile. “But now I’ve got the house and the family too!”
For Chuck, no matter how many stages he’s played on or people he’s met, his biggest inspiration will always be his son. “He just turned eighteen months old and he inspires me to be better every day. I want to give him a good life and make sure he’s happy,” Chuck says earnestly.
Chuck dedicates his time at ConnectPay to accomplish just that. “Basically, everything I’ve achieved in the last four years was from working here,” Chuck admits. “ConnectPay has treated me very well and everybody is so supportive. There are so many things I like about this company – my coworkers, the environment, the culture. Hopefully, I can retire here – that’s the ultimate goal!”