Timmon Smith: Finding sobriety and executive presence

A DUI on his son’s birthday gave Timmon Smith the wake-up call he needed. Now, he’s helping others change their lives inside and outside.

Presented by: Our York Media
Written by: Anthony Machcinski
Timmon Smith (Photo by Ken Bruggeman/Our York Media)

Timmon Smith talked to his son two weeks after his 10th birthday inside a holding cell at the York County Prison, charged with his fourth DUI.

“You could just hear that he was so embarrassed,” Timmon says. “I kept thinking about him going to school, saying his dad is an alcoholic, and that crushed me.”

Timmon thought back to his own childhood, when he’d see his mother asleep on the couch smelling like alcohol. It sent him on a bad path: He dropped out of school at 15, sold drugs, and even took a bullet to the shoulder.


Timmon spent the year after his fourth DUI on house arrest watching hours of motivational videos.

One day, he just started crying. “I realized, ‘Damn, I’m finally changing.’”

It’s important to look good, not because it makes me feel good, but because of the feeling it leaves others.

Timmon Smith

Not long after, Timmon met local “positivity guru” Kevin Jackson. He helped Timmon become a motivational speaker and taught him the power of dressing well and “executive presence.”

“It’s important to look good, not because it makes me feel good, but because of the feeling it leaves others,” Timmon says. “When a positive, well-dressed individual walks into a room, it makes everyone feel better.”


Timmon’s been clean the past four years since the DUI. He started Mr. Hollywood’s Bowtie Collection, a custom bowtie retailer, from his basement and grew the business into a full-time gig.

He repaired his relationship with his mother, who also found sobriety.

“I resented her so much until I found out that my mom was the best mom she could be,” Timmon says.

He’s still working on his relationship with his son. They had a painful but necessary conversation months after the DUI.

“I made him a promise I would never drink again,” Timmon says. “He sees the accountability I have now, and I want to show him that no matter what you go through in life, that you can become successful as long as you have the right tools.”

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