Dr. Charles Quick knew what he didn't want and had a vision for what could be. After leaving academia and setting up his own private practice, he realized what he missed most was the consultative nature of the academic environment. He knew he wanted to create a business where he could work with other professionals who shared his passion for veterinary medicine and the animals that they serve, in an environment that supported his ideal of work/life balance.

As a specialist in radiology, the idea of a specialty hospital came to mind. The idea was a big one, and an expensive one, but one he thought about often during his morning run near I-59 and Highway 6 in Sugar Land. In fact, it occurred to him that the very spot he ran past each morning would be a perfect place to open a facility. And so the seed was sown.

He said his first task was to convince his wife. "I don't do anything without her blessing and approval." He then contacted other investors to share his dream and help provide seed money for the new venture. Surprisingly that was the easy part. It was harder to find a bank that wasn't feeling the pinch of the banking industry's shakeup. He did his feasibility study, prepared a three-inch binder-sized business plan and thought he was ready for the loan when the local bank, which funded the land acquisition, refused to fund construction . After talking with numerous banks, he eventually found a bank in Colorado who saw the potential and was strong enough to help with his multi-million dollar vision. His banker there suggested Community Business Finance to help Dr. Quick and his investors get through the Small Business Loan maze.

Preparing the paperwork for the SBA is not an easy task. The paperwork seemed unending, but he says Bill Ebersole worked with him to get it all pulled together. "Bill is a very knowledgeable individual and gave us some good advice," said Dr. Quick. "Shirley Christenson also worked closely with us and together they helped us every step of the way."

The hospital opened in December 2007 after two years of planning and construction. The Sugar Land Veterinary Specialists facility has nine examination rooms with areas for internal medicine, diagnostic imaging, radiation therapy, and nuclear medicine. It includes a surgical unit, isolation ward, chemotherapy room, CT scanner and all the equipment necessary for emergency and critical care. Today, the practice is thriving. Dr. Quick is adding more staff, an MRI suite, and is looking to expand the treatment areas to the upper floor.

"We planned with the end in mind," says Dr. Quick. "It was a tough time, but Bill is a good guy and has given me good advice. I still call him for advice from time to time."